Get Your Mexico Residency Card in 1 Hour
- Last Updated: March 8, 2022 by Ann & Ron Reid
- Expats, Immigration, Living in Mexico, Legal, Visas
GREAT NEWS! Mexico's National Immigration Institute (INM) Goes Digital
Mexico's Instituto Nacional Migración (INM) recently launched a new digital system that allows the resolution of immigration procedures in less than 24 hours. To date, eleven state offices of the INM have implemented the new system that provides a residency visa holder with his or her residency card in a matter of an hour or so. This new INM program replaces an old program that took weeks and sometimes months to process immigration procedures. The system is expected to be implemented nationwide soon.
To obtain residency in Mexico, temporary or permanent, you must first apply at a Mexican consulate outside the country, (you should apply in your country of residence or a country you are legally residing in). This is required for almost all types of residencies. See our article, Mexican Residency Visas.
You will receive a visa stamp on your passport at the consulate. Afterwards, you will need to take your passport, with the new stamp, to an immigration office in Mexico (called the Instituto Nacional de Migración or, INM) to get your residency card.
Prior to this new procedure's introduction, this second step at INM took anywhere from one week to six months to complete. During that time, you were not allowed to leave Mexico without a special letter of permission. This new procedure eliminates that waiting period, completing this second step in a matter of a few hours. You go into the office and walk out with your card the same day.
With this new procedure you will now be able to apply for an immigration procedure, residency, renewals, switching to permanent residency from temporary, etc., from start to finish in 24 hours. We've heard from folks who are saying it is taking about an hour to obtain a residency card.
This means no more waiting weeks and months, no more needing "permission to exit letters" because the process took months.
This new administrative dynamic began operations in mid-August and, to date, provides service in the representative offices of these 11 Mexican states:
It is expected that soon it will cover all of the 32 states of the Mexican Republic. Hooray for progress!