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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys. I've been searching the forum and various other sites and doing google searches. So far, I have either found conflicting information, a lack of information, or no information based upon the above.

I am moving back to the US, unfortunately, do to being laid off from work. I need to know what to do about my FM3. There is a very small chance that my previous employer here would ask me to come back, but let's not consider that in this thread.

I read an old, closed thread on here from 2008, but it was really confusing, and talked about not worrying about anything regarding my FM3, and I don't think that's the case anymore.

Does anyone know what I need to do if I am moving back to the states permanently? A friend of mine with an FM2, back in the day, went to university in the states. He got a letter from the consulate indicating he was going to be gone for a long time. But that was for his FM2. I have an FM3.

I would prefer to go to the consulate in the states if I can, because my time is quite limited. It's not that I put it off, it's that I just made the decision and I am moving home very quickly.

So, do you know what I need to do? Basically, I have my FM3 (the new card from the 2010 change) and my passport.

Thanks in advance guys!
 

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Hi guys. I've been searching the forum and various other sites and doing google searches. So far, I have either found conflicting information, a lack of information, or no information based upon the above.

I am moving back to the US, unfortunately, do to being laid off from work. I need to know what to do about my FM3. There is a very small chance that my previous employer here would ask me to come back, but let's not consider that in this thread.

I read an old, closed thread on here from 2008, but it was really confusing, and talked about not worrying about anything regarding my FM3, and I don't think that's the case anymore.

Does anyone know what I need to do if I am moving back to the states permanently? A friend of mine with an FM2, back in the day, went to university in the states. He got a letter from the consulate indicating he was going to be gone for a long time. But that was for his FM2. I have an FM3.

I would prefer to go to the consulate in the states if I can, because my time is quite limited. It's not that I put it off, it's that I just made the decision and I am moving home very quickly.

So, do you know what I need to do? Basically, I have my FM3 (the new card from the 2010 change) and my passport.

Thanks in advance guys!
Since you're in Mexico City, it would be easy enough to go to the INM office on Ejército Nacional and ask them what to do. Sorry you lost your job and have to leave Mexico:(.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks so much for the thoughts. I'm going to keep looking when I get home. Luckily, I have a tremendous number of contacts at large corporations, and have worked for a few too.

I have also contacted my immigration attorney to see if she knows, but she's iffy at best, because she's so busy. She rarely gets back to me in a timely manner, which is why I put it out here. My spanish is conversationally good, but when it comes to specific needs such as this, or medical needs and such, I am fairly lacking. That's why I haven't gone to INM up there by myself yet...
 

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Thanks so much for the thoughts. I'm going to keep looking when I get home. Luckily, I have a tremendous number of contacts at large corporations, and have worked for a few too.

I have also contacted my immigration attorney to see if she knows, but she's iffy at best, because she's so busy. She rarely gets back to me in a timely manner, which is why I put it out here. My spanish is conversationally good, but when it comes to specific needs such as this, or medical needs and such, I am fairly lacking. That's why I haven't gone to INM up there by myself yet...
Ask a Spanish-speaking friend to go with you to INM. I've found them to be quite helpful, though I do have the advantage of being a fluent Spanish-speaker.
 

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You will need your visa right up until you actually cross the border. When you do that, ask INM to cancel your visa permanently and give you a receipt for that process.
Otherwise, if you fail to cancel it, and should return to Mexico, you would be fined for every day that you failed to renew, right through the entire life of the visa. When properly cancelled, you will be able to return legally on an FMM and apply for a new visa, if needed or wanted. No fuss, no fines.
Also, don't forget to have Aduana remove the sticker from a US vehicle, if you have one, and keep that receipt, too.
If flying out, Aduana at the airport should cancel your visa. Don't let them tell you 'don't worry', as most agents don't know the consequences and will just assume that you are 'never' coming back.
I'm sure you have very mixed feelings about leaving, so keep your options open.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Ringo.. Ever the helpful!

Dumb questions then.

I am flying out. So...

1. What is Aduena, and how long does it take to have them cancel my FM3 Visa?

2. Will Aduena be at MEX (Benito Juarez Airport) or my destination airport in the states when I go through immigration?

3. If they get *****y with me and say "don't worry", what do you recommend I reply with so I don't offend them? They get a bit touchy and all.

4. If they are cancelling my FM3 Visa, and I do come back, will I be reinstating the same FM3 Visa, or will I be getting a whole brand new FM3 Visa?

Thanks Ringo!
 

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Thanks Ringo.. Ever the helpful!

Dumb questions then.

I am flying out. So...

1. What is Aduena, and how long does it take to have them cancel my FM3 Visa?

2. Will Aduena be at MEX (Benito Juarez Airport) or my destination airport in the states when I go through immigration?

3. If they get *****y with me and say "don't worry", what do you recommend I reply with so I don't offend them? They get a bit touchy and all.

4. If they are cancelling my FM3 Visa, and I do come back, will I be reinstating the same FM3 Visa, or will I be getting a whole brand new FM3 Visa?

Thanks Ringo!
It's not really Aduana, Customs, in English. At Benito Juarez, you need to look for the Migración desk, once you check in with your airline and before you head for the departure gate. Ask someone in the airport where it is as the location is not always obvious.
 

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You'll need INM, Immigration, not customs on the way out.
On returning, come in on a 180 day tourist permit (FMM) and then apply for a new visa, if desired or needed, at your destination in Mexico.
 

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You'll need INM, Immigration, not customs on the way out.
It's good you corrected your earlier post, which said that Aduana cancels your visa at the airport. The OP has enough on his plate right now without receiving conflicting advice from us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Okay.

Interesting. I was trying to recall if I ever went through immigration flying OUT of MEX back to DFW, and all I recalled was going through immigration and customs upon entry to the destination country. IE I go through immigration and customs when I return to Mexico at MEX, and go through immigration and customs when I return to DFW.

But I guess I go through immigration before I leave MEX airport, because the website indicates that passengers in transit and departing international flight passengers is on the first floor for terminal 2. I honestly just don't remember going through immigration when I leave to go back to DFW is all.

So just to be clear for my little brain:

When I get to MEX for my flight to DFW in the states, I go to INM and have them terminate my FM3. And upon entering the states, I shouldn't have any issues.

Did I understand that correctly?

Sorry to ask again. I always like to repeat just to be sure that I understand everything just right.
 

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Okay.

Interesting. I was trying to recall if I ever went through immigration flying OUT of MEX back to DFW, and all I recalled was going through immigration and customs upon entry to the destination country. IE I go through immigration and customs when I return to Mexico at MEX, and go through immigration and customs when I return to DFW.

But I guess I go through immigration before I leave MEX airport, because the website indicates that passengers in transit and departing international flight passengers is on the first floor for terminal 2. I honestly just don't remember going through immigration when I leave to go back to DFW is all.

So just to be clear for my little brain:

When I get to MEX for my flight to DFW in the states, I go to INM and have them terminate my FM3. And upon entering the states, I shouldn't have any issues.

Did I understand that correctly?

Sorry to ask again. I always like to repeat just to be sure that I understand everything just right.
If you have an FM3 or FM2, you are required to check in at INM before boarding your flight out of Mexico. If you have an FMM, you don't.

When you get to Benito Juárez airport in Mexico City, once you've checked in with your airline and checked your bags, ask an airport employee where the INM desk is located. Show them your FM3, and they'll know where to direct you. Everything is computerized now, so it shouldn't take very long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I actually heard back from my immigration attorney, which is a miracle. She usually never gets back to me, which is why I posted on here as well. Anyway, not to be contrary or anything, but she provided some interesting information about next year that affects the information regarding this thread. Here is what she wrote to me:

[Me]
This is based upon the question, what do I do about my FM3 if I go back to the states for an undertermined period of time or permanently, and what if I come back because I find another job?

[My attorney]
"Well in Mexico, the law states that our visas are residence-based. Therefore, once you leave, take it with you to exit, and let it expire." (Please note here that the next paragraph is instrinsic to this first sentence.)

"Next year everything is changing. In the past we were based on a population law in which the immigration law was included. A new law was not necessary, but they created a separate immigration law and it was approved this year. If you were to come back under employment you would end up with a new FM3 under the new immigration law."

[Me]
I explained our discussion here and the information provided which made perfect sense to me. I told her I would be coming back as a visitor to visit my aunt and asked if that would cause an issue if I failed to terminate my FM3, even with the new law. She replied (please note she has a sense of humor):

[My Attorney]
"Not true, although you can do that. But certainly your visa will be put in the garbage bin! Better to keep it and save it!"

My take:
Unless her answers are based upon the new law, I think she is wrong. A friend of mine had major issues getting back into Mexico because he let his FM3 expire. He was a prof at one of the universities here. He ended up not coming back in because of the same.

Another close friend of mine had major issues because she didn't terminate her FM3, and it cost her a lot of money.

So, seems to me the safe bet is to have it terminated, even though my attorney says that " can do it but it's not necessary."

M2P (my two pesos)
 

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Your attorney is mistaken & her answer could cause you problems & cost you a considerable amount of $$$ in the future. There IS a monetary fine for failing to cancel & return your FM3/FM2 resident visa when you give up residence in Mexico.

RVGRINGO had the most accurate answer....with one caveat....in order to not potentially negatively impact your departure flight from Mexico by being held up with paperwork at INM, you can turn it in a few days (it's been several years, but I believe it was up to 3 days) prior to your final departure. INM will officially cancel your current FM3 & will issue you a letter which allows you to legally remain in the country until the date specified on your departure ticket. When you clear INM at your final point of departure from Mexico, you turn the letter into INM, just as if you were a tourist who is required to return a 180-day FMM. The paperwork is done in advance & doesn't slow you down while you're rushing to make your flight. The next time you come into Mexico, you'll have to enter initially on an FMM. You lose whatever time you've accrued & would be required to start from scratch with a new FM3 if you decide to return permanently at some future date.

This has been the process for at least 10 years, I followed it when my mother opted to move back to the Pacific Northwest. I sincerely doubt that the new INM regulations will impact the long standing requirement to turn in your FM3/FM2 at the time someone permanently leaves the country.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
La Paz:

Thank you for clarifying this for me, and for everyone else who ever reads this thread.

I would say that this is the official answer for everyone who does this. I GREATLY appreciate your clearing this up. This is exactly what I am going to do.

I also thought my attorney was wrong, as I stated. Again, thank you SOOOO much!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
See La Paz below for Official Answer

My Attorney is definitely WRONG. La Paz' answer should be the most correct answer for those reading here.
 

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I dealt with this once for a client that was moving back north, the INM office here wouldn't accept the FM3 before she left the country, as RVGRINGO mentioned. Years ago they did give exit letters, but I was told that now the policy is turn it in at the INM office at the airport or border when you leave. It may be a policy that is dependent on the INM office as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for the info. I assume I can do it at either place, unless migración has the same rule here in DF. I would HATE to go down to Ejercíto Nacional and wait in line just to find that out. <shudders>.

Do you have any advice on how much time I should allot for INM at the airport to terminate my FM3? I have no issue going even six hours in advance should I need to. I used to travel for a living. Sitting in airports is my forte, I would even say.
 

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I've never dealt with INM at MEX, but here in Cancun I would give it an extra hour.

I have a thing with airports though, I usually show up WAY to early for my flights and end up sitting in the gate for 3 hours before my flight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Yes, I have always been the same way (again, because I used to travel for a living).

Thank you so much for the information. I am just going to cancel it at the airport to be safe, and go very, very early. While I am there, I will ask them about canceling at Migración beforehand.

Once I find out and am back in the states, I will put my findings out here so that people will know what I found out at least for DF.
 
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