How to get an FM3
Note: I understand they have made it much easier to get FM3s. I will update this when I find out the new requirements.
The tourist visas are good for 6 months but it you want to stay longer without crossing the border again you might want to get an FM3. This also allows you to legally keep a car in Mexico and apply for the Mexican medical insurance at IMSS. Getting an FM3 can be quite a hassle. It would probably involve no less than 3 trips to the office and I have heard of people going 10 times. If you live in Nayarit you will go to the Immigration Office in Tepic - See map on the bottom of the page.. Not all of the people working in the office are fluent in English so if you don't speak Spanish it might help if you bring a translator. Here is a list of some of the things you will need.
1. Proof that you have enough money to live in Mexico. For a single person, this might be $1000US per month, and less if you own a home. Bring 3 copies of your bank statement for the last 3 months.
2. Proof of residency. Bring 3 copies of your electric and telephone bills. If you rent and do not have these, you can go to the Precidencia in San Blas, and they will issue you a proof of residency paper for around 50 pesos.
3. Three copies of your passport - they want copies of every page including the front and back cover.
4. You need 4 passport size photos. There is a place down the street from the office in Tepic - best to let them do it since they know exactly what is required.
5. They will give you 2 forms at the office that you will have to fill out (and make copies of at the nearby copy offices). The first is sort of a letter - they told me what to say at the office. The second is a long form - I had a copy of my friend's form so I just copied what she had put in.
6. Once everything is approved they will fill out the Forma Fiscals and you will take the forms to the bank and pay. The bank will stamp the form and you bring it back to Immigration Office.
Do not expect to do this all in one day! Go early because the office closes at 1PM. When you are done, celebrate with a nice seafood and cheese stuffed pinapple at Farallon. See Tepic page.
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