Becoming a Mexican Citizen
Acquiring Mexican Nationality in 2013
To acquire the Mexican nationality, two processes can be initiated. The first process is for persons who were born from Mexican parents, in Mexico or in a foreign land or from parents who acquired the Mexican nationality through the naturalization process, this process is called nationalization. The second process is for foreigners who reside in Mexico and want to acquire the nationality using the naturalization process.
This article concerns the process to acquire the Mexican nationality through naturalization and will only be regarding the process for persons who want to apply based on the residency factor (First paragraph of article 20 of the Law).
With the new immigration law in 2012 was born a necessity to change the Rules (Reglamento) of the Law of nationality (Ley de Nacionalidad) Congress approved the changes and now one who wants to acquire the Mexican nationality through the Naturalization process based on residency must proceed as follow:
Present a request indicating his or her will to acquire the Mexican nationality and formulate the renouncements stipulated in article 17. of the Law once the document called “Carta de Naturalizacion” (Naturalization Card) is emitted. Article 19. also establishes that the applicant must be able to speak Spanish, have knowledge of Mexican history and be integrated into the Mexican society This article must be read in conjunction with article 15 of the Reglamento (By-Law) where in its second paragraph one will find the exception to the rule: Minors and adults over 60 years of age only have to be able to speak Spanish, thus no requirement of a written test or knowledge of the history of Mexico. Finally the article stipulates that to apply the established requirements in the article correctly, one must refer to the bylaw of the law and must prove to have been residing at least 5 years in the country as required in article 20. of the Law, again one must read said articles with the corresponding articles of the Rule when one wants the nationality due other reasons.
Article 18 of the By-Law was modified and now establishes the process in the following way:
I.- Be an adult (18 and over) and having the use of his civil Rights;
Present the following documents:
II.- Signed request in original form;
III.- Valid immigration document in original form, emitted by the Secretary of Government, with which it will prove legal standing in México and in consequence, the residency in the country during the immediate last 5 years from the date on the request; said document must be in force for minimum 6 months after the presentation of the request and have the CURP number.
IV.- Certified copy of the birth certificate, duly legalized and translated. In case of Refugee status this requirement could be exempted by the SRE.
V.- Original of foreign passport or valid document of identity and trip;
VI.- A letter, truthful, and with clarity the times of exit from the country and entry into the country as per the requirements of article 21 of the Law;
VII.- A certificate, in original form of no criminal past emitted by the competent local and federal authority where the applicant lives.
VIII.- Two recent face photos in color, of 4.5 x 3.5 cms., with White background, no glasses, wig, earrings or piercings and no hat;
IX.- Manifest under oath that the information is correct and in accordance with the presented documentation and
X.- Proof of payment of the fees in original form.
Article 21. of the Law indicates that the status of residency is not affected, except if they appear during two years previous to the presentation of the request and exceed in total six months.
Article 23. of the Law indicates that the Secretary of External Relations (SRE) will request the opinion of the institute of Immigration.
And very important; article 24, where it is stipulated that the process of requesting the Nationality will be suspended if one is declared responsible of a crime, put in jail or just under investigation either in Mexico or in a foreign land and as per article 25 the nationality will not be given.
The Nationality by naturalization can be revoked by the government, as per article 37.B of the Carta Magna:
The voluntary acquisition of a foreign nationality, because of stipulating in any public document that one does not have the Mexican nationality, to use a foreign passport or using document which indicate that the holder is under submission of a foreign country or be away from the country for 5 years.
This been said, if one who obtains the Naturalization under false documents or acquired by devious means, who cannot speak Spanish etc, after investigation one will lose the nationality and be subject to criminal proceedings.
The next question is where should one file his request? In the event that one applies at the local SRE office one must realize that said offices have only one duty, accept, remit and receive the application. and because only once every 30 days the diplomatic pouch goes or returns to the local delegation the time one has to wait is much longer than if one invests in going to Mexico City to the main offices of the SRE to present one´s application and receive the “CARTA DE NATURALIZACIÓN” along with a lawyer who will assist and supervise the process.
In conclusion, it is recommended that one who resides in Mexico should acquire the Mexican nationality so that he can enjoy being a part of the society and at the same time retain his first nationality. The advantages are numerous, including being able to vote, easier processes in banking, fiscal and legal matters, to be able to work and having the right to acquire real Rights on real estate property and not having to report to immigration each and every year and most but not last in respect of the country.
Lic. J.E. Beaulne, LL.B.
Abogado / Avocat / Attorney at Law,
International real estate investor
Member of Lawyer's college in B.C.S.
Firm´s Senior Partner,
Notaria 8, Planta Alta, suite 4 & 6,
Esq., Allende y Serdan,
La Paz, B.C.S., Mexico. CP 23000.
From outside Mexico: 011 52 1 (612) 348-9793
In Mexico:045-(612) 348-9793 cell