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Key Points

  • In August 2021, several changes were implemented in all local NII immigration offices within the Mexican Republic.
  • These immigration authorities have increased biometrics requirements for foreign nationals seeking permanent residence, work visas, and other immigration statuses in Mexico.
  • Twenty-two immigration procedures are impacted by this change.


Twenty-two (22) procedures will now require a scheduled appointment to file associated applications (appointments may be scheduled here):

  • Change to the permanent resident by the family unit
  • Change to the humanitarian visitor
  • Change from temporary resident to permanent resident
  • Change from temporary resident student to temporary resident
  • Change from humanitarian visitor to permanent resident
  • Change from humanitarian visitor to temporary resident
  • Change to the temporary resident by the family unit
  • Regularization due to expired documents or unauthorized activities
  • Regularization for humanitarian reasons
  • Regularization by the family unit
  • Applying for a work permit
  • Issuance of the migratory document by the exchange
  • Issuance of the resident card by agreement
  • Issuance of the resident card by renewal
  • Issuance of visitor’s card by extension
  • Notification of change of address
  • Notification of change of marital status
  • Notification of change of place of work
  • Notification of change of nationality
  • Notification of change of name
  • Permission to leave and return
  • Replacement of migratory document

With a scheduled appointment, local attorneys in Mexico may file the process on behalf of the foreign national, once obtaining authorization and once the foreign national appears to have fingerprints. In these instances, immigration documents will be issued. If the foreign national does not appear for the fingerprinting process within three working days (counted as from the date of the filing), the process may be canceled.

Additionally, with a scheduled appointment, foreign nationals may file applications on their own, appear for fingerprints, and receive their permanent or temporary residence card on the same day.

However, local immigration attorneys in Mexico only encourage self-filing in special or extreme cases. This is because immigration authorities request more documentation from self-filing foreign nationals, the authorities may not always speak English, and other logistical errors are common.

What are the changes?

Recent changes tighten biometrics requirements, largely due to medical risks with COVID-19 variants.

Looking Ahead

These changes reflect continued monitoring of COVID-19, its variants, and all associated risks. Employers with Mexico-bound talent should consider all updated procedure requirements, ensure their employees have access to biometrics appointments and avoid self-filing in normal circumstances.

Source: Regional Policy Expertise from Maria Elena Abraham, CDMX | Mexico City, Mexico

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