Change in Mexican Real Estate Laws?

A sunset on the coast of Jalisco.

  A reader writes: “I read that the Mexican camara de diputados approved a bill in April ’13 that would amend the constitution to allow foreigners to own land along the coasts. I haven’t heard anything since. Do you have info on this issue or a link to a site that might?” To my understanding the bill passed in the chamber of deputies, but the senate has not yet approved it. The bill would amend real estate laws so that […]

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Is your Vehicle Illegal in Mexico?

Image of roll of red tape.

  I have received a number of questions, including a panicked message from my sainted mother, regarding the new vehicle importation laws for ex-pats. After developing a near migraine headache trying to unravel the information myself, I turned to Solomon Freimuth at mymexicanlawyer.com for advice. He very kindly wrote a post on the subject, wherein he outlines what the new importation regulations mean for foreign residents in Mexico. Incidentally, his site is a great resource for legal questions regarding living […]

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Penalty for Expired FMM?

Image of roll of red tape.

  Once again, El Codo has been lurking on Lonely Planet’s excellent Thorn Tree Mexico Forum. He directed me to this informative discussion of the penalties for an expired FMM. Be sure to read through to the bottom. I especially enjoyed the following very sound advice from “michoacan”: “I have found that being polite, honest and forthright brings about a lot of pleasant surprises with Mexican authorities. It seems many officials are looking to see if a person is seemingly […]

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Crossing the Border at Douglas/Agua Prieta

  We prefer smaller borders like Douglas/Agua Prieta because the lines are shorter.  This particular border is fairly easy to deal with: lanes are well marked and this time only one car was ahead of us in line. We were stopped by U.S. Customs on the gringo side and enjoyed the usual interrogation from a suspicious customs agent with textbook level attention to grooming and uniform. He peered into our packed ’87 Dodge van with apparent incomprehension. I wasn’t sure […]

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Cheese Smugglers!

My friend Jazmin, who is from rural Guerrero, complains that she can never find really good cheese in the U.S. By really good cheese she means the fresh cheese she grew up eating on the rancho. Evidently she’s not alone in her longing: officials along the U.S./Mexico border are busy nabbing cheese smugglers. According to The Alpine Avalanche, CBP officers assessed $6,097.84 in penalties in 21 incidents. Mostly it sounds like the “criminals” are people returning to the U.S. after […]

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Letter from a Reader: Importing Pets

Renata writes: “I appreciate your website and may be moving to Mexico someday with my soon-to-be husband. We have many animals but only 3 are dogs. Do you have any tips for bringing guinea pigs or parakeets into Mexico?” Carl responds: “I think my only tip is to be sure you have the proper health certificates — the biggest hassle is usually getting birds back into the U.S.” Editor’s note: International health certificates for the export of animals from the […]

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La Configuración Perfecta

Mexican police badge, DF.

Having lived in Mexico long enough to know when to be cautious, I prefer to take time to protect myself against various irritating potential eventualities. Such was the case when I journeyed to a small Mexican city to visit my doctor and obtain prescription medicines. Now, this isn’t a tourist city in the least, more of an industrial one. But I knew the downtown area well and decided to park my large camper pickup truck in front of a trinket […]

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Pre-paid Mexican Divorce

It’s a twist on the gift card that costs less than $500 dollars and is available in Mexico City at your neighborhood Oxxo store (Mexico’s version of the 7-11): the pre-paid divorce. The only catch is that you have to establish residency in Mexico City, be childless, and have no serious disagreements about money, property,  or legal issues with your current spouse.  Which makes one wonder why anyone who qualifies would want a divorce in the first place, but that […]

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