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Learn | Essential info

What do I need to sign legal documents in Mexico?

Buyers need an FMT (tourist visa)Essential Info.

USA Passport or Original Birth Certificate is all you need for FMT and Buyers may sign legal documents with FMT or FM3 in front of the Notary.

Sellers must have a valid FM3 to sign legal documents when selling your property. An FMT WILL NOT WORK for a SELLER. A “seasoned electric bill) and a current electric bill along with the seller’s FMT3  will be the documentation you need as a Seller to qualify for a zero capital gains tax designation with the Notary.

How do I get and why do I need an FMT & FM3

A foreign person needs this document in order to sign legal documents before the Notary who requires a copy for his file as part of the Bank Trust Deed and he requires that he see the original & compare the original to the copy. You will need this AT CLOSING!!

FMT: When you enter Mexican Border, get in the far right lane and go under the canopy and park. You will see a small office that says “Migracion” (Spanish for migration). You will fill out a simple form, go to the bank teller next door to Migración , pay $20.00 to the Bank , go back to Migración and they will stamp the FMT and your passport . You’re finished with the FMT now. They are open 24/7 & it takes about 5 minutes (unless you get caught behind a passenger bus!).

Ask for a 180 day tourist visa. You will need this document to apply for your FM3 which is renewed annually which is your legal status in Mexico. To apply for your FM3 you will need the following:

  • Clear Copy of your Passport (color if possible)
  • Clear Copy of your Driver’s License
  • Copy of US or Mexican Bank statement (to show you are capable to support yourself)
  • Copy of Utility Bill from USA
  • Original of FMT

You may apply for this at your local Mexican Consulate. If you obtain the FM3 at the Consulate, then you MUST STOP at Tijuana or Otay Mesa Border Crossing and have your new FM3 stamped by the Immigration Office in Mexico. It is NOT VALID if it is not stamped.
Upon renewal in 12 months, if you used the Consulate, then you need to complete the same process in Rosarito or Ensenada Immigration office and take all the above documents to open your “local file”. It is easier to open your file locally the FIRST TIME, but it is your choice.

Who needs a residency FM3?
  • Foreigners that reside in Mexico for more then six months   
  • Foreigners that own Mexico property throughout a Mexican Bank Trust
  • Foreigners that want to be protected in case of legal issues, while in Mexico
  • Foreigners that want to have a Mexican driver license
  • Foreigners that want to have a  U.S. Vehicle in Mexico
  • Foreigners that want to change from FM3 to FM2 status
  • Foreigners that want to have a Mexican Bank account
  • Foreigners that want to bring their household in to Mexico duty free
  • Foreigners that want to sell or lease their property in Mexico
 
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