New Requirements for Bringing Foreign-Plated Cars into Mexico: Banjercito

The Mexican Ministry of Finance and Public Credit has issued a new decree affecting expats bringing foreign plated cars into Mexico: “New Requirements for Bringing Foreign-Plated Cars into Mexico: Banjercito”. From the Banjercito website:

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT
The Ministry of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP) has issued a decree which states that beginning on June 11th, 2011 anyone applying for a temporary import permit for vehicles must make a deposit in the amount determined by the following table:

Vehicle Year Model:…….Amount to be paid in Mexican Pesos*
2007 and later…….USD $400
2001 until 2006…….USD $300
2000 and earlier…….USD $200

*Peso amounts are based on applicable exchange rate

This deposit is compulsory and can be paid by credit card, debit card, or cash (in US Dollars only).

Users must keep in mind that if the deposit is charged to a credit card, the charge will be made in Mexican Pesos and will be calculated based on the exchange rate of the day on which the payment is made. This deposit will be refunded to the same credit card on the next banking business day after the vehicle is fully returned and based on the exchange rate of that day.

Other Fees:
There is a one time $44 USD fee for getting a Temporary Import permit plus the IVA tax (typically about 16%), that can be paid on the internet or at the border. A number of web-reports from expats describe that their online payments were assigned to the wrong person or wrong vehicle, and they report that they had no way of recovering the money. This means that it may be worth it to stand in line at the Aduana/Banjercito lines at the border and apply for your Temporary Import permit in person, to avoid being permanently mis-charged.

Other Requirements:
The vehicle must be returned on time and within the time period stated on the temporary import permit. If the vehicle is returned after the stated time period, the entire deposit amount will be transferred to the Office of the Treasury on the day following the expected return date, as allowed by current law. The Temporary Import permit is kept from expiring by notifying Aduana of every INM visa renewal or change in residency status. The law requires notifying Aduana, in person, of INM visa status within 15 days of the renewal or change. See: Moving to Mexico: FMM, FM2, or FM3 Subsection: Added Rules for Keeping A Foreign Vehicle in Mexico: for the specific application letter and documents needed with the Aduana application to update your visa expiration date and visa status. (In reality Mexico does not issue visas, FMM, FM2/FM3 Inmigrante/No Imnigrante, Inmigrado are actually residency permits.)

Last Item:
Another clause in the new updated regulations requires FM2 Rentista and FM3 holders to notify Aduana within 15 days of when they renew their FM2 or FM3, otherwise Aduana is allowed to confiscate/keep these “new” deposits.   Aduana’s address is listed in Yucalandia’s main article on cars in Mexico: “Importing & Driving a Car in Mexico”

June 22 Update:
Spent yesterday afternoon talking with 3 different Aduana officials (including 30 minutes with a supervisor) and with a Banjercito supervisor and agent at the Chetumal / Belize border. The Banjercito officials were very emphatic about encouraging people with Temporary Import Permits for vehicles that they start updating their INM permits process as early as possible (30 days before the expiration date), and they said to notify Aduana of the extension of the car permit expiration date by AT LEAST a week before the expiration date, and 2 weeks if possible. They said that the system between Aduana and Banjercito for updating expiration dates is not always working rapidly, and the STRONGLY ENCOURAGED notifying Aduana in person with an official letter long before 15 days after the issuance date of the renewed INM permit.

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This post is meant as a public service announcement (not meant as legal advice), so, we here at Yucandia will keep the post updated with further understandings and clarifications as they develop.

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Feel free to copy while giving proper attribution: YucaLandia/Surviving Yucatan.
© Steven M. Fry

Read on, MacDuff.

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126 Responses to New Requirements for Bringing Foreign-Plated Cars into Mexico: Banjercito

  1. Eric Chaffee says:

    Thanks for the heads-up on this, Steve.

    I’ve now got a Capital One Platinum for such transactions, as it charges nothing for international transactions (no foreign funds fee). Of course, for stays longer than a month, the user will need to pay off the balance before it is refunded on departure, or interest will be charged.

    ~eric.

  2. TJ Mexico says:

    I wonder what you are supposed to do if you had the Permiso prior to June 11, 2011 and a deposit was not requred. Is the notification to Aduana upon renewal of FM2s and FM3s only for purposes of the deposit. If so, it seems as this does not affect those of us who were not required to pay the deposit.

    I am remember, the deposit was always “on the books” but it was not enforced. I simply paid the $400 peso (or whaever) fee for the permit and was on my way.

    Do I have this right?

    • yucalandia says:

      TJ,
      Fun, fun, fun… The old requirement for notifying Aduana of FM2/FM3 renewals (prior to June 11, 2011), only applied to people who made cash deposits. Now that they have clarified/updated the requirements, the new language makes it sound like the letters to Aduana are still needed on cash deposits and now also on credit card deposits made after June 11, 2011. We’ll keep monitoring reports from across Mexico on how the new rules are actually implemented.
      steve

  3. Doris Knoblock says:

    We have been coming and going into and from Mexico for over 12 years. We will be driving into Mexico on or around Nov. 11, 2011 and will obtain a tourist visa and car permit for 6 months. BUT, on Nov. 22 we will be FLYING to Los Angeles for 2 1/2 weeks and returning by air to Puerto Vallarta. We will have to turn our tourist visas in at the airport but our vehicle registration will be linked to that number. What can we do to insure that we will be able to cancel out our vehicle when we leave before the 6 month original permit expires. We will only be in Mexico for about 4 1/2 months total time. We will have to get new tourist visa when we reenter Mexico from Los Angeles.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Doris,
      A strict interpretation of Mexican law does not permit your plan. Are you planning to drive the car out of Mexico when you return to the US the 2’nd time? You can stop at the border and have Aduana (Customs) remove the sticker at that time, which will allow you to bring in a vehicle in the future. We’ve heard about several hundred traffic stops from expats where the police did not ever check the sticker with the visitor’s FMM, so, it is unlikely that you would have a problem driving a vehicle with a Visitor’s Visa that does not match your sticker’s Visa number. If you did have an accident or problem where the police checked the sticker vs. your visa, they do have the right to permanently confiscate your car permanently. Based on history, this is very unlikely, but possible, especially with their new computerized registration systems.

      There is one additional legal option: If your car becomes illegal due to visa changes or whatever reason, you can apply for a free temporary permit that gives you 3-5 days to remove the vehicle from Mexico. Check out Aduanas website for instructions on how to apply: “Safely Returning Autos”
      steve

  4. Jerry and Margie Wegner says:

    My husband and I obtained our FM3 last March. We have driven down, from Wisconsin, for the past 12 years. This year we plan on driving down in Oct. We have tickets to fly home (US) in Nov. and fly back to PV in Jan. From then on it is our plan to leave our 7 year old car in Mexico. Is this legal? Do we have to pay the car deposit? Thank you for any information. Jerry and Margie

    • yucalandia says:

      Hey Jerry and Margie,
      The New Law on Immigration does not specify how Aduana must handle their policies on vehicles or importing household goods, because INM and Aduana are separate govt. agencies governed by different laws and different regulations. Aduana’s current official policy is that FM3 holders may keep their foreign plated cars here, where the car’s permission/sticker to stay is valid as long as the FM3 holder’s visa is valid.

      Clearly, you guys are fine for another year (until your FM3’s expiration next March), and before next March, it looks like FM3’s will convert to Residente Temporal, which Aduana should recognize as a valid resident visa – allowing you to keep your foreign-plated vehicle under your new visa. “Surviving Yucatan: New Immigration Law Published for Mexico – The Article”

      I will give myself one “out”:, though. Mexican govt. officials can certainly exercise their own personal judgment, and they can always upset our communal apple cart via some unexpected future rulings and future Regulation updates, but I doubt it in this case.
      steve

  5. Robert E Roller says:

    I drove into Mexico through Nugalas, and was not stopped for a sticker to register my car, I have my car here in Mexico without a sticker and without being registered. What option do I have now? I do not want my car conficated if I get stopped.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Robert,
      First, Aduana does not stop anyone to make them get a sticker. Instead, when you cross into Mexico, you have to ask Customs or Immigration officials where the Banjercito office is for registering to import your car (each border crossing has the office in a different place, with some being 2-4 blocks from the crossing point).

      You have 2 options to correct the problem:
      1. Return to the border, hope that you do not get stopped by the police while driving, and hope that the police do not confiscate your car during a traffic stop. or
      2. Make an application to Aduana for a free 3-5 day permit to return to the border, and get your temporary importation permit and sticker. If your car becomes illegal for whatever reason, you can apply for a free temporary permit that gives you 3-5 days to remove the vehicle from Mexico. Check out Aduana’s website for instructions on how to apply: “Safely Returning Autos”
      steve

      • nicole says:

        Aduana’s website, clearly states that you have to have an expired Temp Import Sticker to apply for the Retorno Seguro. Is it possible to get one without the TIP? I am in the same situation.

  6. Carole says:

    All this says nothing about motorhomes, trailers and 5th wheels that were/have ten year permits on them. We turned out 10 year permit in just in case we did not bring our motorhome back.
    Can we still get another 10 year permit?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Carole,
      I don’t know. I’ll do some research and report back on what I find.
      steve

      • John Daniels says:

        Hi i live on the border of Columbus NM and Las Palomas,Chihuahua called Puerto Palomas.I was in the Aduana just today.The $200 to $400 deposit applies to cars and trucks but NOT to RVs or Motorhomes.This is incredible!! and from head of aduana hereCYou can still get a ten year RV permit on motorhomes for just under $50 no deposit makes no sense but good for RV people.Again deposit on cars trucks but not RV ten year permit very odd!But head of aduana should know.No communication problem speak good Spanish.Hope this helps.John bigjohn1@rediffmail.com feel free to email me if you wish

      • yucalandia says:

        Hey John,
        WONDERFUL NEWS !

        We love current, factual, up-to-date clear reports from knowlegeable posters of what’s actually happening and how knowlegeable officials are enforcing the rules.

        Great post !
        steve

  7. Pingback: JUNE SERAPE | Serape

  8. Ellis says:

    If you get your vehicle permit on-line with Fed-Ex delivery to your home before you leave, how is the permit number linked to the FMM which you get sometime later at the border?

    • yucalandia says:

      Ellis,
      The linkage comes when they enter your personal information for the FMM into the Mexcian Govt’s. database. Both the FMM number and the vehicle permit get registered with your passport # and personal info as the vehicle’s owner. Have you registered online? We have not included the on-line registration information because of the number of problems ex-pats have reported. A number of ex-pats are finding that when they reach the border, their payments are not properly recorded (lost / mis-assigned to another unknown person), and the applicant has to pay twice.

      We’ll include the online option in our instructions when it is working better.
      steve

      • Ellis says:

        I originally got the 10 year permit for the motorhome on-line–delivered right to the door. But this year we are towing a car so need to get a 6 month one for it.
        Just our luck. They are doing everything they can to discourage tourism!

  9. Carole says:

    On the banajerito website it still has the classification for the 10 year permit for a motorhome. It has the same fee schedule as a car so I assume it is up to date. It seems you can still bring a motorhome for 10 years. I am going to apply on line this season. I know someone who did for their boat and they got the sticker within 4 days!

  10. David Bruce says:

    We have the new FM-3 plastic cards.
    In the past, prior to June 10th, 2011, we have never made a deposit either by cash or credit card to bring our car into Mexico …. we have paid a flat fee of $400 pesos for the car permit and used our credit card to pay this fee.
    This year we are going back to the US in August for a few months and plan to return with a different ( traded up ) car. We will of course turn in the sticker and permit for our current car when we cross the border..
    Am I reading this new law right …….to where it means we will now have to make a deposit of $400 US to bring the new car in ?
    If yes,
    1) Can we make this payment with a credit card.
    2) Is the charge of $400 debited to my c.c. immediately, or is it just a hold ( guarantee ) to insure that I eventually take the car back to the U.S. ……. If I default, then and only then do they actually debit my c.c.
    3) The law ( 106 ) states that my car permit is valid as long as my FM-3 is valid so am I bound by the other part of the new law that seems to say I must notify Aduana within 15 days of renewing my FM-3 every yuear.
    4) If I dont notify Aduana of the renewal am I in violation of the law and subject to losing my deposit. ……… how would the other govt agencies know whther I have or havent ?
    5) If I do notify Aduana, do they automatically, by computer notify Immigration and Banjercito that I have complied and under law 106 my car is still legal and I am not subject to losing my deposit
    OR …… do I have to notify them myself ?
    6) …. a bit ouit of srquence, but what happens if you use a credit card to make the deposit and then you get a new card with a different number ? …. when you leave and want your deposit back, …. how would this be done ? This would happen if you wanted to turn in your sticker again to buy a different car in the US
    7) In the past, as long as our FM-3 has been current ( and by association our car permit is also valid ) we have driven back and forth across the border ( came back in nothing to decale lane ) and never asked for any special permission. Whats going to happen now if you get stopped to be checked at the border and you car permit is outdated ? Is this going to be a violation that might cause you to lose your deposit ? We have been stopped by policia many times and we show them our copy of Ley 106 and they send us on our way sin problemas… will this now also change ?
    8) Any updates on how tyhis is going to affect motor homes under their 10 year permits ??

    A lot of questions but I am sure the answers will benefirt many other people besides me

    Thank you

    David

    • yucalandia says:

      Hey David.
      Good Questions.
      ~~See answers below:
      We have the new FM-3 plastic cards.
      This year we are going back to the US in August for a few months and plan to return with a different ( traded up ) car.
      Am I reading this new law right …….to where it means we will now have to make a deposit of $400 US to bring the new car in ?

      ~~ As the article says above, yes , Aduana/Banjercito will bill your card the $200 – $400 USD fee, at that day’s exchange rate in Pesos.
      ~~ When you return the car the the United States on time, they will re-imburse that credit card in Pesos for the same US Dollar amount at that day’s exchange rate.
      If yes,
      1) Can we make this payment with a credit card.

      ~~ As the article says above, yes .

      2) Is the charge of $400 debited to my c.c. immediately, or is it just a hold ( guarantee ) to insure that I eventually take the car back to the U.S.
      ~~ As the article says above, yes , they bill your card. This change in Aduana policy is why Yucalandia wrote the article.

      3) The law ( 106 ) states that my car permit is valid as long as my FM-3 is valid so am I bound by the other part of the new law that seems to say I must notify Aduana within 15 days of renewing my FM-3 every yuear.
      ~~ yes Under the previous (old) Aduana and INM laws, you have always been required notify Aduana of changes in your visa status. The law was only sporadically enforced in the past 20 years. Now that INM and Aduana both have national computerized data bases that make your data easily accessible to agents, ex-pats may no longer be able to skirt the law. There are internet reports of expats who are being caught and fined for these violations. The bulk of the reports are that the expats who go to their local Aduana office with their letter and documents are not having any problems, even when they are past due.

      ~~ ~~ I realize that this can all sound a bit harsh, but one of the main reasons we started this Yucalandia blog because I could not find current or timely information on the web about how these things are done properly and legally.

      4) If I dont notify Aduana of the renewal am I in violation of the law and subject to losing my deposit. ……… how would the other govt agencies know whther I have or havent ?
      ~~ Yes , they can bill your card, and there are internet reports of people losing their deposit for not following the law. These records either are now computerized in national databases or are being entered, so, the old loopholes for evading the law are closing . I wish it weren’t true, but just like in Canada and the USA, ignorance of the law is not an acceptable excuse.

      5) If I do notify Aduana, do they automatically, by computer notify Immigration and Banjercito that I have complied and under law 106 my car is still legal and I am not subject to losing my deposit
      OR …… do I have to notify them myself ?

      ~~ INM currently does not care whether you have paid your Aduana fees nor do they care if you have notified Aduana of your visa status change. Since Aduana and INM are separate agencies with different functions, it would be like being stopped for speeding, and expecting the a police officer to also check if you had any old unpaid back income tax bills and vice versa (the IRS does not care if you have unpaid parking tickets). Simply notify Aduana of visa changes, and it’s all good.

      6) …. a bit ouit of srquence, but what happens if you use a credit card to make the deposit and then you get a new card with a different number ? …. when you leave and want your deposit back, …. how would this be done ? This would happen if you wanted to turn in your sticker again to buy a different car in the US
      ~~ If you change cards, or your old card expires, then give them your current card to receive the credit/re-imbursal.

      7) In the past, as long as our FM-3 has been current ( and by association our car permit is also valid ) we have driven back and forth across the border ( came back in nothing to decale lane ) and never asked for any special permission.
      ~~ As the Yucalandia’s Article says (Importing and Driving a Car in Mexico): When leaving Mexico, vehicles with Temporary Import permits must stop at the border and either apply for a “Partial Return” permit or have Banjercito remove the sticker. This requirement has only been loosely enforced in the past, but there are internet reports that the Mex. officials are now enforcing this rule, and fining expats when they attempt to return to Mexico.

      ~~ I realize that this can all sound a bit harsh, but one of the main reasons we started this Yucalandia blog was that I could not find current or timely information on the web about how these things are done properly and legally.

      …Whats going to happen now if you get stopped to be checked at the border and you car permit is outdated ? Is this going to be a violation that might cause you to lose your deposit ?
      ~~ Most likely, they will remove your old sticker as you leave, smile and wave. They might bill your deposit fee to your credit card. We have not heard any web reports of how it is currently handled for people & cars who were being tracked by paper records in the past. It is clear that the national computerized databases allow them to easily enforce the rules now.

      ….We have been stopped by policia many times and we show them our copy of Ley 106 and they send us on our way sin problemas… will this now also change ?
      ~~ This is again just like the US and Canada. When a traffic officer stops you for a broken tail light, he doesn’t check with the Tax Authorities (like IRS), to see if you have any outstanding back income tax warrants. The only officer that can legally enforce this would be an Aduana officer, and yes, the Federal, State, or Municipal police (in theory) can hold you and your car unitl Aduana gets there, and Aduana could then confiscate your car. There are internet reports of Federales confiscating expat’s Temporary Import permitted cars, when they did not follow the rules, but this seems to be the exception.

      8) Any updates on how tyhis is going to affect motor homes under their 10 year permits ??
      ~~ Nothing to be updated, the expats with Temporarily Imported RVs are still required to notify Aduana of changes in Immigration status.
      Big John reports in a post (below) that his local Aduana border crossing officials told him that the deposit system for RV’s has not changed, CC number without $$ charges is sufficient.

      ~~ I hope this all helps.
      On the face of it, it may seem harsh, but ignorance of the law is no excuse. For the 25 years that I have traveled internationally, I have been perplexed at why so many Americans and Canadians think it is ok to travel-in or move-to a place, and not follow nor learn the laws that govern their travel, their cars and their visas. Forums and news reports from Canada and the US have decades of routine reports by Americans and Canadians complaining about how “Costa Ricans, Guatamaltecans, Hondurans, and Mexican immigrants MUST follow OUR laws“, accompanied by grousing about how immigrants try to get-by and get-around the laws.

      We personally prefer smooth sailing, especially when we can avoid un-necessary hassles by learning and following the rules up-front. Call me crazy, but I just don’t like looking over my shoulder or waiting for the shoe to drop.

      Except for the occasional confiscation of an ex-pats car, almost all the internet reports show Mexican Officials being very tolerant and even accepting of past US and Canadian offenses in these areas. Now that INM records are computerized at a national level, and Aduana/Banjercito records are similarly being entered into national databases, the days of sliding-by Mexican laws appear to be quickly passing, which is a good thing.

      We all like a level playing field, honest referees, and clear rules that are evenly enforced.

      Yucalandia was started as guide to help us all know and follow the rules, so we can continue to ENJOY “the game”, and not spill our beer over some unnecessary dispute.

      Thanks, Dave, for an excellent post with clear, well-stated, and pertinent questions !
      steve

  11. David Bruce says:

    Thanks for the in depth answer to all my questions Steve.
    There is howvwer one point that still confuses me.
    If we frollow the rules ( which we will ) and notify Aduana every time we renew our FM-3 s and we also apply for ( and get ) a Partial Returns permit ot a multiple entry permit, ……… will the law 106 still apply to where as long as the FM-3 is valid,then so is the car permit.
    For example we want to go to the U.S: for a short shopping trip …. we have a current FM-3 in hand as well the Partial Return Permit and the letter to Adana advising them of the renewal
    ( BUT THE ACTUAL CAR PERMIT IS OUTDATED ) ….do we have to stop on the way ouit and show our papers, or do we breeze right through ?
    Then on the way back in and we get the ghreen light … aqain just keep going. ? If we gert the red light are we stil legal because of the current FM.3, the Partial Teturn Permit and the letter to Aduana …. or are we in trouble abecause the car permit is outdaqted.
    IF YOU ARE ILLEGAL because the car permit is outdated, how do we solve this problem ?
    Despite what law 106 says, do you have to buy a new permit every 180 days ( $400 US,
    or the old $400 pesos ) and do you have to drive back to the border to get it ?

    The old law in theory allows you to have a car in Mexico indefinitely ( without ever having to pay the $400 pesos permit fee again ) as long as your FM-3 is valid and your Partial return is valid and you have your letter to Aduana ……….. so now with the new law is your car permit still valid indefinitely if you have your receipt for the $400 US deposit and a current FM-3 or just what is the situation ?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi David,
      With your current FM3 and current Retorno Partial permit, (neither expired), you can re-enter Mexico in the normal way. As long as you did not allow your FM3 to lapse, your vehicle’s Temporary Import permit remains legal.

      The question about how the new vehicle deposit system with Banjercito works with your situation is a good one, though.
      Since you have a CC number on record with Banjercito to guarantee your promise to take the vehicle out of Mexico before the ultimate expiration date, I understand that you have met the ongoing Temporary Import deposit requirements. Since Mexican officials seem to have broad discretion in how they interpret these rules (due to the varying policies applied at different locations), it is possible that they might ask you to meet the new $400 USD deposit requirements, but I think this is very unlikely.

      Please give us a shout, and tell us how it all worked out when you return. We read some web reports that a few Mexican border crossings are not eager to give the Partial Return permits, and that they just “wave the cars through” and welcome them back on the return trip, with either removing the sticker or getting/giving a Partial Return permit…
      Happy Trails,
      steve

  12. Carole says:

    Thanks very much. It is amazing. Hopefully they will not notice their omision and put it in later.

  13. Sarah Calisto says:

    I am going to be driving a Canadian plated car back to Canada. The vehicle belongs to a fellow Canadian, who brought it in under her FM3 many years ago. She is selling it to me, but as it is illegal to sell it in Mexico, I need to present it in Canada to make the transfer of registration. She is presently in Canada. She has a valid FM3 and so do I. I have a letter from her giving me permission to drive the vehicle, and requesting that it be removed from her name when I drive it out., as well as a copy of her valid FM3. The Mexican Auto insurance is in my name, as well as a temporary “binder” in my name from the Motor vehicle registration/insurance corporation in Canada so I can legally drive it up. I have all her original paperwork- importation permit, registration, sticker (on broken glass, I have the windshield replacement receipt). When I get to the Banjercito module in Nogales, will they just ask for the sticker and the import permit , or will they check it against my name? If so, with all the paperwork I have, how likely are they to make a big hassle or try to impound the vehicle? How likely is it that if I tuck a $50 bill in with the paperwork (if they start to hassle me) that will facilitate the process? I have been in Mexico for 11 years and have always managed to talk my way politely out of any vehicle hassles, and my Spanish is good. Please reply ASAP. Need to leave next week. Thank you for your wonderfull website.

    • yucalandia says:

      Sarah,
      You have made good efforts! I don´t know the exact details of how that can work, but the the letter in Spanish where she formally requests that the vehicle be removed from her FM3 should be the key. If she could include a notarized power of attorney in Spanish (notarized in Canada) that authorizes you to be her agent, representing her in removing the car from Mexico and authorizing you to to take the car out of Mexico, and authorizing you to represent her in abandoning-cancelling the car´s Temporary Importation permit would seem to support the deal if they don´t accept her letter, or if they check your ID- Those suggestions are not meant to be legal advice. You could also contact Aduana to find out what their official policy is for people removing a Temporarily Imported vehicle from Mexico.
      Best of luck, and tell us how it works out – to help others,
      steve

  14. Sarah Calisto says:

    Steve,
    Thank you so much for your reply. Will work on getting that notarized letter in Spanish. I have another question. I have read Article 106 on several websites. The original in Spanish. One version states that in addition to immediate family members being allowed to drive your car, another foreigner with the same migratory status as the owner (in our case FM3s) is allowed to drive it. In another version of Article 106 this option is missing. Is one of these versions outdated, or was that part just accidentally left out?

    • yucalandia says:

      Sarah,
      I don’t know what version of Aduana Ley Articulo 106 you have, but the current official version on the web says your ascendents and descendents may drive the vehicle:
      “Los vehículos podrán ser conducidos en territorio nacional por el importador, su cónyuge, sus ascendientes, descendientes o hermanos, aun cuando éstos no sean extranjeros, por un extranjero que tenga alguna de las calidades migratorias a que se refiere este inciso, o por un nacional, siempre que en este último caso, viaje a bordo del mismo cualquiera de las personas autorizadas para conducir el vehículo y podrán efectuar entradas y salidas”

      Adequate Google Translate English Version:
      “Vehicles may be driven in national territory (Mexico), by the importer, his spouse, ascendants, descendants or siblings, even if they are not aliens, an alien who has the same INM visa status, or by a national provided that in the latter case, the same trip aboard any of the persons authorized to drive the vehicle and may make multiple entries and exits. ”

      http://www.aduanas-mexico.com.mx/claa/ctar/leyes/la.html#art106 see Section IV Item a .
      steve

  15. Wes says:

    A supplementary question – can Mexican nationals who are friends be named to drive the foreign plated vehicle as well???

  16. Tom says:

    Hola Steve,
    I hope that some new info has come up in regards to permit acquired prior to June this year!
    I acquired my permit in 2006 and my 1999 car has never been out of MX since then. I, as others, was told that if your FM was current then your permit was current. I have never taken the car and or paperwork to the Aduana’s office for any reason. I renew my FM the end of each year.
    You stated in a earlier response that “Now that they have clarified/updated the requirements, the new language makes it sound like the letters to Aduana are still needed on cash deposits and now also on credit card deposits made after June 11, 2011.”
    So I’m curious about how this will affect an existing permit? If I am understanding all this correctly……when I get ready to renew my FM the end of this year I am now required to go to the Aduana’s office, 15 days prior, with my permit paperwork and tell them that I am renewing my FM as this will be the first change in my FM since the June 11, 2011 new decree start date? The decree states that “anyone applying for a temporary import permit for vehicles must make a deposit in the amount determined by their posted fees”. Since I am not applying for a temporary permit will I be required to pay the new fee ($200.00US)? Or do they consider a “renewal” the same as “applying”?
    Thanks,
    Tom

    • yucalandia says:

      Tom,
      Since you have an existing permit, from before the June 11, 2011 change, Aduana continues to accept the previous deposits made for existing Temporary Import permits as sufficient to meet the requirements. You could register your current INM FM_ Rentista with Aduana now, to get your current proper expiration date into their databases.

      I think you have mis-typed or mis-read the requirement for when to notify Aduana of changes or renewals of INM visas. The rule says 15 days after you are given the new visa or extension:

      “Si su plazo se prorroga por ampliación o refrendo a su calidad o cambio en la calidad migratoria de no inmigrante a inmigrante rentista (siempre que exista continuidad en las calidades migratorias), para que la garantía que dejó no se haga efectiva, debe presentar en cualquiera de las 49 aduanas del país, un escrito en formato libre, dando aviso de dicha circunstancia, dentro de los 15 días hábiles siguientes a aquél en que se le hubiera otorgado la prórroga, ampliación, refrendo o cambio en la calidad migratoria de no inmigrante a inmigrante rentista, debiendo anexar copia del comprobante de dicho trámite, así como del permiso de importación temporal del vehículo y, en su caso, la tarjeta de internación.”
      http://www.aduanas.sat.gob.mx/aduana_mexico/2008/vehiculos/141_11220.html

      I think this answers your questions and issues(?),
      steve

  17. Larry says:

    Thanx for the wealth of information. We brought our car into Mexico, under my name, about 7 years ago where it has remained. I have held an FM-3 for over 10 years (renewing each year). My wife now holds a Mexican Passport. I have never informed Aduana when I renewed my FM3. I will be renewing my FM3 in December. Should I do anything at this point with Aduana ? Do I understand that I will need to inform them within 15 days of receiving my new FM3 in December ? I am presently in the US for a few months (via Air) and will return to Mexico in Nov.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hey Larry,
      Based on expats’ comments from across Mexico, Aduana does not seem to be penalizing anyone (yet?) for not registering their INM visa changes & renewals with Aduana. This would mean registering your new (renewed?) FM3 with Aduana – BUT INM is supposed to be changing to the NEW Residente Temporal or Residente Permanente categories by mid-November, which means NO MORE FM3 nor No Inmigrante Residente. INM has also not announced how they will be handling Temporary Imported Car permits yet under the new visa system.
      steve

  18. David Bruce says:

    Just crossed the border going into the States on August 20th,2011and if I understood the official correctly, old auto permits ( if your FM-3 is current ) will continue to be honored indefinitely.
    The new deposit requirements ( either cash or credit card ) only apply to bringing in autos after July 11th, if they have not entered Mexico previously and have not obtained the old style entry permit.
    Note: even if you have entered Mexico previously and quote: ” established an account by using your credit card to buy the old style permit ” , that does NOT get you out of having to pay the new deposit ( up to $400 depending on year of vehicle ) to bring in a different vehicle
    Scenario: …. if you go back to the U.S. temporarily and surrender the sticker on your auto and while in the U.S., you trade up or buy a new car, …. when you come back to Mexico you WILL have to pay the new deposit.
    The question I forgot to ask was …… if you surrender the sticker, in anticipation of getting a new vehicle and then for whatever reason, you don’t get a new vehicle and you come back to Mexico with your old car, … what do you have to pay, ? …. the old $400 pesos or the new $400
    If anybody has info on this situation, please post it.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi David,
      Your information fits our understandings.
      When you bring a vehicle back into Mexico after having the old sticker removed, you will pay the $400 USD under the new systems’ rules.
      steve

  19. David Bruce says:

    Yucalandia or anyone else …….. do you have an answer to my question posted Sept 4th

    “The question I forgot to ask was …… if you surrender your car sticker when leaving Mexico , in anticipation of getting a new vehicle and then for whatever reason, you don’t get a new vehicle and you come back to Mexico with your old car, ( which was permitted under the old rules 400 pesos )… what do you have to pay, ? …. the old $400 pesos or the new $400
    If anybody has info on this situation, please post it.

  20. Xiquena says:

    My Mexican car permit was obtained when I entered Mexico in the fall of 2010 using my then acquired FMM (180 days). In February 2011 I obtained the updated Visa card, termed “non-inmigrante, rentista”. Following instructions on Rolly’s site, I notified Aduanas in Mexico City, in writing of the change in my visa. This letter, dated within 15 days of my visa status change, but was not dropped off at a Mexican post office until nearly 30 days later. The letter was accompanied by all of the visa and vehicle related documentation mentioned on Rolly’s site.

    I returned to the US in this permitted vehicle three weeks after the original expiration date of the permit (tied in with the original 180 day FMM). Deciding that I’d prefer to have a new permit tied into my “upgraded” visa, I turned in the old car permit at the border at Nuevo Progreso. Immediately the bank agent responsible for cancelling my permit said that I owed a fine. I quickly produced a copy of Ley 106, along with a copy of the notification of change letter mailed to Aduanas in DF, and the guy still said that I owed a fine. I requested assistance of a local aduana’s agent, and that person quickly explained to the bank clerk, that I was indeed in compliance with the law, and no fine was owed.

    When I returned to Mexico in July 2011 I obtained a new permit for that same vehicle using my “non inmigrante” rentista visa obtained in February 2011. I paid the “under $50 US registration (paperwork fee) + IVA for that vehicle, as well as the $200 US (pre 2000 vintage vehicle). It was made clear to me that the $200 would be refunded only if the vehicle permit was cancelled and turned in when the car left Mexico, prior to the expiration date (or that associated with current visas or renewed visas.) Knowing that I might obtain a new credit card with a different number subsequent to obtaining this car permit, I elected to pay $200 US in cash, rather than dealing with anticipated hassles associated with different a different credit card.

    The visa to which my car permit is linked, expires in Feb. 2012, was subsequently misplaced or lost. Shortly thereafter, I did the paperwork and obtained from the Xalapa INM office, a replacement of it, with the same Feb. 2012 expiration date. I did not send “aduanas” in DF notifying them of this replacement, since the expiration date is the same.

    Question 1: SHOULD I, now, even though it has been longer than any 15 days, send a letter to “aduanas” notifiying them of the replacement (same expiration date) non inmigrante visa, or simply do so within 15 days of having my existing visa renewed in February 2012?

    Recently someone smashed a portion of my vehicle windshield while the car was parked on the street. Currently the smashed part is small and in a location that does not obstruct vision of the driver, nor does it allow any water in.

    Question 2: If the windshield must be replaced in either Mexico or the US (I’ll be returning to the US soon for a couple of months), what should be done with the Mexican car permit that is actually “valid” to minimize hassles, if the “windshield” replacing company does not have solvent and the ability to easily remove and readhere Mexican car permit as well as the US state inspection sticker?

    Many THANKS in ADVANCE for suggestions.

    PS: Three days after returning to Veracruz in July, a Mexican postman arrived at the door with the equivalent of either a certified letter, or “return receipt requested” letter from Mexican ADUANAS in DF, for which I had to sign. This letter advised me of “aduanas” receipt of my letter advising of change in my visa status, as linked to my permitted car. THEN, the letter advised me that the “car permit” mentioned in my letter was cancelled in Nuevo Progreso on a particular date.

    So, even though snail mail took nearly five weeks for the “aduanas” letter to get from DF to Veracruz, there computer systems were well linked and they knew that my car permit was cancelled after I mailed the “notification” of change letter.

    • yucalandia says:

      Xiquena,
      First, the current Aduana requirements are that the Temporary Permit holder visit an Aduana office in person, deliver the letter requesting the change in expiration date, fill out a form, supply any documentation they request, and return in a day or two to receive a paper documenting that the change in expiration date (INM visa renewal or change in status) has been registered with Aduana.

      Second, our reading of the current Aduana rules on filing applies to: changes in INM status – or for renewals. Since your case is neither a change in status nor renewal, you simply go to an Aduana office within 15 days of renewing your No Inmigrante visa next February – which will likely be a Residente Temporal visa under the new INM law.

      Third, you must maintain the sticker with the car. In the case of wrecks or broken windshields, take a picture of the broken windshield, and then save the sticker by either removing it intact very carefully or better still, keep the piece of the windshield with the sticker still attached, stored in your glove box. Another expat with exactly this problem report that the police and Aduana are content to see the sticker attached to the remaining piece of the windshield. – use care in handling the broken glass…
      steve

  21. Pingback: Nationalizing a Vehicle in México « Nancy and Barry in Mérida

  22. CM says:

    We applied for and got our permiso a few weeks ago, and made the deposit payment on our credit card. Since then, the card was lost and the company issued a new card with a new number. The VISA company said that any refund/credit applied to the old number will be transferred to the new number (although no new charges are allowed) however, will this be a problem when returning the car. Do we have to actually present the old card (the one that was lost) to get the credit- or will they go off the number on the application, or can we just give them the new card?

    • yucalandia says:

      CM,
      You need to check your Temporary Vehicle Importation-Guarantee Deposit Receipt, because it explains what to do.

      A copy from another person’s receipt states: (Google Translate?)
      “The amount will be reimbursed into the same credit card which was originally used to make the deposit. Should the credit card be cancelled before the reimbursement takes place, I will notify Banjercito of this fact and provide an alternate account number where the money can be reimbursed.”

      This makes sense: notify Banjercito (in writing) of the fact that your card was lost and supply them an alternate account number. I personally would try to do this before reaching the border, to expedite any other issues that crop up. (?)
      steve

  23. joel says:

    All of the comments are very informitive and now i have a question/situation. I have had a vehicle in playa del carmen for 2 years and i see many other vehicles with colorado license plates. Somebody has sold or bought these vehicles, any insight in how it is being done?
    Now for my situation, i brought in my jeep , which is in a company name, not mine. I have letters of authorization to use this and it is imported in my name. would it work to drive into Belize and then have the person that wants to buy it simply import it to mexico with a new authorization letter to them.Leaving the title in the business name. Anybody done this?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hey Joel,
      There are lots of people who write on the internet saying that it’s OK to sell your Temporary Import permit car to other gringos, so, there are people who either don’t know the law or they ignore the law. If buyer and seller don’t care, then they just swap $$$ for vehicles.

      How did you bring in your vehicle the first time? Did Aduana/Banjercito require that you have a letter from your company (the vehicle owner) authorizing you to import it into Mexico? If that worked the first time, it should work for whoever you sell it to – having them exit Mexico and then return – enjoy some shopping or gambling in the “free zone” – and get a permit in their name.
      steve

      • joel says:

        I should have added “legally” after my question of how the vehicles are being sold.
        Yes i had a notarized letter in english authorizing me to drive the vehicle.
        In april I was in Chiapas close to the border , getting into my vehicle at a restaurant, and was stopped by Federal police traveling with Aduana and Migracion all wearing uniforms, and they checked everything. Checked the sticker too. Checked Vehicle papers and mine too. Checked my FM3.
        Maybe found a loophole, Put the vehicle in an LLC before driving in.

  24. David says:

    Just a quick update on importing your vehicles into Mexico.
    We crossed into Mexico on December 14th, 2011 at the Matamoros crossing.
    Our 2005 vehicle cost $300 deposit + the $44 permit fee and was charged to our c.c. with no problems whatsoever. However, when the agent at Banjercito was asked about automatic renewal of your vehicle permit when you renew your FM-3 status he stated ( and was confirmed by Aduana ) that you have to notify Aduana of your change/update of status within 20 days of the change and that it must be done by phone to Aduana in Mexico City ( Ph. 1-800-46-36-728 ) and that it cannot be done at a local Aduana office.
    Doesn’t sound right to me, as you would have no written proof that you have done it.
    Has anybody actually renewed their status and their auto permit since July 2011 ? What did you do and what proof did you get that you have complied with the law ?
    2nd …. when questioned about motorhomes, they are still saying there is no change.
    A motorhome already in the country under the 10 year permit is good and that new entries will also still be able to bring in a motorhome and get a 10 year permit for just the permit fee and NO deposit.
    As you all know ….each office seems to have their own interpretation …. has anyone brought in motorhome for the first time since July 2011 ….. what was your experience ?

    • yucalandia says:

      Our Aduana office in Progreso has been issuing an official letter to every expat who visits the office with their letter and documents that prove their INM renewal and new expiration date – all since June 2011. Several of these people have written exactly how things worked for them, and they are NOT required to call Aduana in Mexico City.

      Any other readers out there hear of a need to call Aduana in Mexico City?

      We have neither seen nor read of any changes in how motorhomes are handled.
      steve

      • Dave says:

        Steve,
        We don’t have to renew our FM-3 ( which I understand will now be classified as something else ) until April and we will be doing it in Tuxpan, which also has an Aduana Office. However they are off the beaten tourist track and may not be familiar with the requirements.
        Would it be possible to post a copy of the ” official letter ” they gave you when you notified them of your status change, so I could show it to the Tuxpan officials to say this is what I need from you.
        If you prefer, you could e-mail me a copy to Dave at cidrni2002@yahoo.com

        Thanks

      • yucalandia says:

        Hey Dave,
        Check your yahoo mail – I sent you a redacted pdf file of the Aduana letter for you to show to your office.

        While the letter is handy to show to the police, when stopped, what you really need is for them to update your Temporary Permit’s expiration date in their Aduana database to show the expiration date of your renewed FM3.
        steve

  25. David says:

    I know it has appeared before on this forum somewhere but I can’t find it right now.
    Does anybody have a copy of the letter required to present to Aduana ( along with your papers from the FM-3 renewal )
    I assume it’s a standard form letter where you just fill in the blanks with your personal data
    Thanks if someone has this
    David

    • yucalandia says:

      From: https://yucalandia.wordpress.com/living-in-yucatan-mexico/moving-to-mexico-fmm-fm2-or-fm3/

      Date
      Address of your Aduana office

      Por medio de la presente me permito informarle a used que El Instituto Nacional de Migración de este país me ha concedido prorroga en mi calidad migratoria por el tiempo de __*__ días para permanecer en México, con vencimiento del día __**____. [*= number of days of your FM3 renewal – usually 365] [**= expiration date of your renewal] Lo que estoy avisando a esta autoridad para los efectos del Articulo 106, fracción IV, inciso a de la Ley Aduanera, con respecto a la importación temporal de mi vehículo:

      Marca:_____________________ [Make of car]
      Modelo: ___________________ [Model of car]
      No de serie_________________ [VIN]
      Efectuada por la Aduana de _______________________ [where you got the permit]
      Amparo del Permiso de Importación Temporal No. _______ [hologram number]
      Fecha de Entrada del vehículo: _______________ [date of entry with vehicle]
      Fecha de Vencimiento del Permiso: ___________ [expiration date of permit]
      Para que pueda prolongarse el plazo del vehículo mientras dure mi calidad migratoria.
      Atentamente,
      [Your signature]
      [Your name]

  26. DAVID says:

    Many thanks for the copy of the form for Aduana

  27. Cash Struxness says:

    Hey there Yucalandia. I have a friend who lives in Mexico and also a resident in the US. We want to leave a van down there at his place, in hopes of flying in and using it on vacations. From what I am gathering, this is highly illegal. Are there any ways around that? Is it possible to have him buy our van in the US, take it over and we buy it back once it is registered? Thanks so much, Cash

    • yucalandia says:

      Cash,
      What is the residency status of your friend who lives in Mexico? If he is a citizen, then he could consider permanently importing the van by paying the appropriate import duties. If you want to leave your van here, you would need to apply for and maintain residency here as either No Inmigrante FM3 or Inmigrante FM2 status and bring the van in under a Temporary Import Permit – and renew your FM3 or FM2 visa every year in the future.
      steve

      • Cash Struxness says:

        Hey there Steve, he is a citizen…If he was to register and pay the duties, could we then buy the van from him and operate it legally? Also, would we need an FM2/3 to do that, or could we use the van under our FMM status? Thank you, I really appreciate the help, Cash

    • Baja Steve says:

      Hi there Cash Struxness. Shoot me an email. I have friends who stay in Baja and frequently cross over the border. You could easily just leave the van at their condo building. The garage is pretty much always empty and nobody really cares who parks there. email is public inbox at hot mail dot com … no hyphens or underscores.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Cash,
      Your post somehow slipped through our reviews of comments – and never got answered.

      If you have an FM2 Residente or FM3, then you can leave the van here, and fly in and out. Note that the FM2 only allows you to be out of Mexico for 18 months out of 5 years. Once any vehicle has been brought into Mexico on a Temporary Import Permit (TIP) it CANNOT be sold in Mexico – you have to take it outside of Mexico to sell it and then bring it back under a new TIP issued to the new owner.

      Our main article on importing and operating a car in Mexico describes these issues and answers at: https://yucalandia.wordpress.com/driving-in-mexico-issues-fun/importing-driving-a-car-in-mexico/Importing & Driving a Car in Mexico
      steve

  28. girlwander says:

    Hi Steve,

    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for the fantastic information on your website! I see also see from the commentary that you reply to questions and give feedback. Thanks for that too!

    I would love some feedback from you just to make sure I really am clear on this whole process. Here’s what I’m thinking:

    I’ve fallen in love with Mexico and would like to return (to the Nayarit area for now) and plan on doing that from Florida (where I’m currently visiting for the next 2 months). I plan on driving to MX in early May.

    I’d like to purchase a used car here in FL rather than in MX since I have mechanics and a car dealer in the family. I don’t have such contacts in MX and given that I know nothing about cars, I’d feel more comfortable doing this here. Or, should I just bite the bullet and avoid importation fees, the trouble of renewing importation permits by purchasing a used vehicle there?

    Okay, continuing with the I BUY A CAR IN THE USA AND DRIVE IT TO MX scenario…. So, I get myself to the border in May.

    1) I pay fill out my FMM basico form and pay 20 USD for my 180 visitor’s permit.
    2) I go to the banjercito with all my docs (registration, insurance (American and Mexican), bill of sale, ANYTHING ELSE?)
    3) I fill out the required forms,
    — pay 44USD fee for the temporary importation permit and 16% tax on that 44USD (?)
    — pay the 200, 300 or 400 USD for the deposit (which will be returned to me when I drive over the border back to the States.
    Steve, what happens if I live happily ever after in MX and not go back over the border to sell that car?
    4) I drive off to Nayarit, set up my business with my Mexican friend, apply for my FM3/no immigrante visa (before my 180 days are up)
    5) Once I get my FM3/no immigrante, I have to notify the banjercito.
    Steve, can it be any banjercito? And do I have to drive to the border to do this?
    Once I notify the banjercito, my car is good for as long as my FM3 is and I have to go through this process every year (renewal, notification)?

    Thanks a bunch, Steve.

    Diane

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Diane,

      1) I pay fill out my FMM basico form and pay 20 USD for my 180 visitor’s permit.
      2) I go to the banjercito with all my docs (registration, insurance (American and Mexican), bill of sale, ANYTHING ELSE?)
      ~ If the car has a lien on it, you need a letter from the lienholder approving you taking the car into Mexico- and originals and copies of all those documents, including the title. ~
      3) I fill out the required forms,
      – pay 44USD fee for the temporary importation permit and 16% tax on that 44USD (?)
      – pay the 200, 300 or 400 USD for the deposit (which will be returned to me when I drive over the border back to the States.
      ~ correct ~
      Steve, what happens if I live happily ever after in MX and not go back over the border to sell that car?
      ~ Follow the advice in the article: notify Aduana with every INM permit change or renewal to get your Aduana letter to carry in the car verifying that your TIP continues to be current. ~
      4) I drive off to Nayarit, set up my business with my Mexican friend, apply for my FM3/no immigrante visa (before my 180 days are up)
      5) Once I get my FM3/no immigrante, I have to notify the banjercito.
      Steve, can it be any banjercito? And do I have to drive to the border to do this?
      ~ Not Banjercito, instead notify Aduana – any Aduana office that is not in an airport ~
      Once I notify the banjercito, my car is good for as long as my FM3 is and I have to go through this process every year (renewal, notification)?
      correct

      Thanks a bunch, Steve.

      Diane

  29. Lowell Carter says:

    Hello Steve,
    I recently drove back to the US through the Laredo bridge, crossing on June 13, 2012. I stopped at the car sticker booth and had my sticker removed, and received the receipt for that, but it has been over one week now and my deposit has not been credited back to my charge card. I tried to ask the man at the booth, showing him my deposit paperwork, and he just waved me on as if to say it would be handled automatically. When we got the car sticker 12/20/2011, they had it expire on the date of my FM3, which was 2/14/2012. I did the correct paperwork with Aduana at the Progreso office and have the paperwork extending the car permit until the new FM3 expiration date of 2/14/2013. My understanding was that when renewing the FM3, the computer systems would notify Banjercito, is that correct? Was I supposed to notify Banjercito myself, as well as Aduana?
    I’m wondering if I have unwittingly surrendered my deposit since the original sticker was to expire only two months after our entry into Mexico (tied to the FM3 expiration date).
    Thanks for any information you may have on this…….Lowell

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Lowell,
      One other article on our website notes that you must notify Aduana in person, delivering a formal letter to Aduana describing all your car’s official information and your official INM information in NO LESS THAN 15 days of the issue date of your new INM permit, otherwise the owner forfeits their deposit at Banjercito. Did you get your new approval letter from Aduana before 15 days after your 2/14/2012 expiration date (before Feb 29, 2012)?

      If you have a document from Aduana dated before Feb. 29, then you should be able to file a valid claim with Banjercito for your refund.
      steve

      Yes, Aduana does notify Banjercito of your approved application at Aduana for extending the expiration date of the car permit. I personally spoke with 2 different Banjercito personnel on this just yesterday, and they said that the system between Aduana and Banjercito for updating expiration dates is not always working rapidly, and they STRONGLY ENCOURAGED expats who are updating their INM permits to start the INM process as early as possible (30 days before the expiration date), and they said to notify Aduana of the extension of the car permit expiration date by AT LEAST a week and as much as 2 weeks before the INM/Aduana permit expiration date. *sigh*

      • cidrni2002@yahoo.com says:

        Hi guys,
        I tried to file my paperwork re the renewal of my FM-3 ( to get my auto permit extended to match ) at a regional Aduana office here in Veracruz state ( Tuxpan ) and was told they had no idea what I was talking about so I filed all the paperwork directly with Aduana in Mexico City, using Multi-Pak with a receipt and everything …. also enclosed a self addressed stamped envelope requesting them to send me the receipt and proof that the extension had been made. That was 2 months ago and to date have not had any form of reply.
        Aduana is ” unbelievably ” slow and I really think they delay the processing on purpose so that you will be late and lose your deposit.
        We are here for the long haul so I look at the loss as merely having to pay a yearly fee for the privilege of having my car here but for others only here for a short time, I think the system is a designed rip-off.

      • yucalandia says:

        Cidrni,
        If you come from a country ruled by a strong central government like England or Canada or Russia, etc, where the government offices in individual States are forced by the central government to do everything exactly as ordered out of London or Moscow, etc, then the functioning of the Mexican Govt. can seem like it may be “out to get” people in a few states. Regional offices of the Mexican Government are specifically given broad discretion in how they enforce Federal rules and laws. Our regional offices of Aduana in Yucatan and Q. Roo have been diligently following and enforcing the rules on registering the annual renewals of the expiration dates. Similar reports come from Guadalajara and many other Aduana offices.

        It seems that your Tuxpan office is either not up to speed, or has chosen to exercise their discretion and chosen to not follow the federal rules. (???) Since the old paper systems did not allow the INM/Aduana/Banjercito systems to easily share individual permit records between offices, previous enforcement was lax or non-existent. Using new national databases, these things are easily tracked by every Aduana/Banjercito office, so, the old days of non-enforcement have passed for most of Mexico.

        Since the rules require filing the renewed expiration date in person at an Aduana office, it’s not clear whether it works to send a letter to Mexico City any more.
        steve

        ** ~ Read more details on how to make the processes go smoothly at http://www.mexconnect.com/cgi-bin/forums/gforum.cgi?post=179364;sb=post_latest_reply;so=ASC;forum_view=forum_view_collapsed;;page=unread#unread ~ **

  30. Lowell Carter says:

    Hola Steve,

    Yes, I did file my paperwork in person at the Progreso Aduana, and recieved the letter from them extending the sticker dated Feb. 13, 2012, actually a day BEFORE my FM3 expired! I did find on the Banjercito website, under the English Contact Us link, a direct e-mail address for the Vehicle Permits. Yesterday late afternoon I sent a letter detailing our issue including many copies, especially the letter extending our Vehicle permit until 2/14/2013. Whether anyone at Banjercito will actually reply remains to be seen!

  31. Dave says:

    An update on the problems with filing your letter to request extension on coverage on your vehicle when you renew your FM-3
    As posted earlier I met with blank looks at the Tuxpan, VER, aduana office when trying to file for an extension with them. Subsequently I sent the entire file to the Aduana main office in Mexico City complete with a self addressed return envelope and after 2 months I still had not received an answer from them.
    Took the bus to Mexico City and went to their office to try and sort it out.
    Turns out they had received the request but it had gone to the wrong dept but they had notified Banjercitio and the deposit was safe but they didn’t know what to do with the receipt so they sat on it ….. go figure ( even with a stamped return envelope )
    Anyway the proper dept contacted the wrong dept and I got it all sorted out and I got my receipt.
    However for future reference, anyone trying to deal direct with Mexico City, the correct address is:
    Administracion General de Aduanas
    Administracion Central de Operacion Aduanera …….. ( NOT,,,, de Planaceon Aduanera )
    Av. Hidalgo No 77, Modulo 1V, primera piso
    Col.Guerrero, Delegacion Cauthtemoc
    Codigo Postal 06300, Mexico, DF

    The previous reference to a guy named Azur Bravo who speaks English and could help seems to be outdated…… they could find no record of him or what dept. he might have worked in.
    The guy to speak to now ( and as he himself said … when the govt’ comes in with the new President a lot of people might lose their jobs to croniism ) is ” ANDRES AGUILAR ” … who speaks good English and he can be reached at the same main Aduana number, then press 7,2,1,1 and ask for extension 49584 to reach him directly.
    ~ ~ ~
    After-the-fact addition by Yucalandia editor:
    Phone numbers from the Aduana website:
    ” Desde la Republica Mexicana al telefono 01800-46-36-728 marcando las siguientes opciones en el menu 7-2-2-1-1

    Desde Esatdos Unidos y Canadá 18774488728 marcando las siguientes opciones en el menu 7-2-2-1-1 ”
    http://www.aduanas.gob.mx/aduana_mexico/2008/vehiculos/141_10028.html

    ~ ~ ~

    Also if you run into blank looks at a regional Aduana Office ask them to call him and he will explain what they have to do

    Dave

  32. Lowell Carter says:

    Hey Steve, wanted to give you an update. I sent a letter to the e-mail address for vehicle permits that I found on the Banjercito website on June 22, and again on July 3. Still no response from them. This morning I sent all of my information to Adriana at YES. She may have better luck.
    I just read your new update article dated June 22. This is amazing….we had our paperwork back from Aduana a day BEFORE our permit expired, so even with a 16 day lead, Aduana still apparently did not notify Banjercito in time. If we had stopped at the Banjercito booth inside at the Nuevo Laredo border to discuss getting the deposit back, we would have gotten nowhere as we are not fluent enough in Spanish to have that kind of discussion. We just drove through the booth to return the sticker and get our receipt for that, assuming (!) that the deposit would be refunded at that point. So it seems like we’d better renew our FM3 LONG before the expiration, or just use a tourist visa next time.

  33. Lowell Carter says:

    Final update: Adriana at YES was able make our refund happen. She was told by Banjercito that they did not have a record that we had left the country. But because I had emailed copies of all the pertinent paperwork including the receipt from Banjercito at Laredo she was able to prove that we had indeed gone back to the U.S. I’m not sure what we could have done differently, and I do believe we followed all of the rules to the letter. We are probably going to enter on tourist visas next year and let the FM3’s lapse.

  34. Elizabeth Doering says:

    I accidently crossed the border coming back from Mexico into the Unites States (Laredo- small crossing) without handing in my car permit sticker. I did not see a place to do this and before I knew it I was in Texas. What a mess! Officials are telling me that I have to drive back to Mexico from Canada and deliver the sticker in person. I even took a video (I was creatively desparate) clearly showing me here in Ottawa with the car and the sticker with the date and officials said this is not acceptable.

    https://skydrive.live.com/redir?resid=F7E19277DBB3AFA8!208&authkey=!AEFhhx2ikLulY_Y

    I have to deliver the car and the sticker to the border and that is my only option. A Mexican Embassy official here in Ottawa said that this is unreasonable and a “joke”, but I don’t see another solution. Has anybody else had this issue? Any suggestions or contacts would be appreciated. Beth in Ottawa

    • yucalandia says:

      Wreck the car – totalled cars allow the owner to document that the car is permanently ruined, and you can send them:
      ~ a letter explaining that the car is permanently ruined,
      ~ the old paper permit, along with
      ~ fotos of the ruined car, and
      ~ a notarized affidavit from a mechanic that the car is totally ruined.

      Aduana processes this application for several months, and then cancels your old permit, freeing you to Temporarily import another vehicle in the future…

      … just kidding …

      But this does point to solutions.

      First, Ignore the advice of the Mex. Consular official (“you have no options”)
      Second, Remember that people who become government employees do so, because they are generally uncomfortable thinking, and they prefer to do what they are told, and to rigidly follow some pre-scribed rules.

      Consider: When you signed the original permit papers, you agreed to turn in the permit and have them remove the windshield sticker when you take the car out of Mexico. You broke your agreement. … OK.. That leaves you with the consequences. But those consequences may be no big deal, and there might even be some tasty consequences you never realized:

      ~ You can either take the car back to Mexico, and allow them to remove the sticker, or
      ~ You can ignore the problem, and simply never Temporarily import another vehicle into Mexico (surrender a relatively minor right), or
      ~ Use your husband’s, family member’s, or gringo friend’s right (a friend with the same INM permit status) to Temporarily Import a vehicle for you to drive during future Mexico travels, where the perpetually outstanding Temporary Import permit causes no problems with INM or other govt. agencies, … or
      ~ Permanently Import a 7, 8, 9, 10 year old into Mexico for/on future travels in Mexico, or
      ~ Rent vehicles in Mexico for whatever future travels you have here, or
      ~ Buy a vehicle in Mexico next time you visit, or
      ~ Get a new passport, and surrender your old Immigration permit and then get a new Immigration permit using your new passport – since your existing Temporary Import permit is tied to your passport number and your previous INM immigration permit, or
      ~ Borrow a car from a Mexican friend, or
      ~ Borrow a car from a gringo in Mexico with the same INM permit status as you.

      So, a quick review off-the-top-of-my-head listing of your options show that you have at least 10 practical choices.

      We suggest that you pick any combination of the 9 that fit your desires and your situation.

      Please come back and tell us what you decided, and what you did.
      Happy Trails,
      steve

      ****
      *Later realizations:
      Beth,
      Do you want to return in the future?

      I inferred from your original comments that you did not want to drive the car back to Mexico. If you shift the context to when you might make a return driving trip, (because there is no urgent need or requirement to resolve the sticker issue any time soon) 2 fresh options pop up:
      ~ Option 11. Drive the car back to Mexico in the future at a convenient time, and turn in the sticker and permit then.
      … No penalties – No problems.

      If you drive the car back in the future, you will likely find that (as long as your INM permit is valid), then:
      ~ Option 12. You can simply drive into Mexico, saying nothing, and keep using the same Aduana import permit….

      … The obvious answer is often a good one.
      God bless William of Occam. Sharp razors are a delight.

      • David says:

        I can personally vouch for one of Steve’s solutions having had a somewhat similar experience.
        We crossed the border with a motorhome without removing the sticker then the M.H. blew up in the U.S. and we had to get a new one. We had signed affadavits testifying that the m.h. had been sold as salvage and a release from the state saying this had been done … transferred ownership to the salvage yard….. made no difference. When we tried to cross the border coming back to Mexico with the new m.h.they would not let it in because the old one was still on the books. Fortunately the registration on the new one was in my name so the solution was I signed the title over to the wife and they allowed it in in her name. Later we contacted Mexico City and after a YEAR of letter writing the old one was finally removed from their computer records.
        Now in theory I too can bring a second m.h. in my name. AAh the joys of being married and the stubbornness of the border aduana

      • Elizabeth Doering says:

        I don’t think I will wreck my 4 year-old Lexus, but thank you for your creative solution. I am in touch with a woman at Mexican customs and will let you know how that goes. If that fails, I will be contacting External Affairs (Canadian Government). This is ridiculous. But then again, I am now retired and have all the time in the world…

  35. Stephanie Moser says:

    We drove to Merida from Colorado in 2007. We currently hold FM3’s. The trailer we brought with our car is “married” to our car. We can’t leave without both the car and trailer together. Problem is: trailer has long since come apart, literally. We need to get it declared “junk” or non-functional so that it can be “divorced” from our car. How do we do that or who do we contact? Can you help? Glenn

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Glenn,
      One friend’s Notario said that it takes a Notarized letter, that you submit to Aduana. Talk to a Notary about drafting a letter that certifies that the trailer is ruined beyond repair, can never be used again, and has been disposed-of. With cars, you get a mechanic or a junkyard to sign the certified letter that the car has been disposed of, so, one route is to get a junkyard or scrap metal dealer to scrap the trailer and sign the letter…

      At least that is how a Yucatecan Notario said to do it. Are you in Yucatan?
      Find a Notario who knows Aduana rules, and follow his advice.
      steve

      post script: I am assuming that you know that you will have to put an information package together for Aduana: A cover letter describing what you want to do, (including your INM NUE number, your passport number, your TIP ID/number, your Trailer’s VIN, trailer make and model, etc) plus, the Notarized letter certifying destruction of the trailer, any Aduana paperwork you have for the trailer, and copies of your ID’s (INM card, passport), etc.

  36. Hello to everybody
    I found this side by chance and hope somebody can help us with that question.
    We are from Switzerland travlling with an RV. We entered Mexico at the Columbia Bridge border in Laredo and got the Banjercito. We put the sticker to the windshield, where it still is.
    Then we spend about 3 months in Mexico and left mid of March to Guatemala. Under some bad circumstances we left the rest of our Banjerctio paperwork and can’t find them anymore. The customs officer let us out of Mexico but told us, we have to find this paper when we will come back. Fact is, when we arrived on a campground in Guatemala we turned almost everything upside down but were not able to find this docs. Does anybody of you know, what will be the consequences, when we want to re-enter to Mexico with only the sticker on the windshield and can’t bring by the other papers ? We have to go back to Canada in fall to have shipped our vehicle to Europe.
    Thank you very much for your hopefully encouraging answer. We are quite desperate.
    Esther + Erich

    • Dave says:

      I think you are dependent entirely on the mood or whim of the customs agent ( aduana ) when you try to re-enter Mexico from Guatemala. Logic would dictate that you could not have obtained your sticker without first having paid the fee and received the relevant papers BUT BUT BUT this is Mexico and logic does NOT always prevail.
      You could possibly try re-entering at a different border crossing in the hopes that a different customs official would be more sympathetic but I think you should prepare for the worst case scenario which would be that you have to pay all over again for a permit for your r.v. to enter Mexico

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi Dave,
        Your approach of sneaking back in without the proper permit may work, but we find it better to follow the existing rules.

        From our perspective, travelers to England, Germany, der Schweitz, the Netherlands, Sweden,
        etc are all given papers we agree to not lose. When we lose these papers, is it really Mexico’s fault and is the Mexican govt. somehow out of line or illogical in expecting us to follow our agreements? Is it illogical to follow the rules? When foreigners break the rules in the USA, England, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, NONE of these countries pat our hands and say: “There, there, it will all be OK.“. None of them give us a hall-pass….

        With a lost paper TIP, the TIP stays on the applicants record forever, the deposit is lost, and the holder is never allowed to import another vehicle until the old TIP is cleared, so, slipping back into Mexico without the paper only delays the ultimate problems.
        Happy Trails,
        steve

      • Dave says:

        Steve,
        I agree that doing everything legal is best and I am not advocating that they ” slip ” back into Mexico illegally. I am only saying that if they are lucky and the aduana allows them back in because he see the logic of ” no sticker without papers ” then no harm is done.
        I disagree with you however on the premise that we agree ” not to lose the papers ” and that we should be penalized because of accidental loss. There should be a simpler way of handling this written into the rules and not just have Mexico collect a double fee because of an accident. I also disagree that this would also happen in the U.S. or U.K. or Europe etc. because I feel that in those counties simple logic would prevail and a more equitable solution would be reached.
        As you may recall, I went trough a somewhat similar situation with a rig that blew up in the U.S. and had to be replaced and no amount of notarized documentation satisfied the Mexican authorities that I could not have predicted this would happen ( that’s why I never surrendered the TIP when leaving Mexico )
        It took over a year of absolutely stupid redundant letter writing and unecessary cost to resolve the issue of simply getting the r.v. removed from their records.
        Yes by all means try to do it legal ….. but Mexico needs to learn to accept logic and not just look for ways to make money and create unecessary problems.
        Despite all else we as tourists and residents ( temporary or permanent ) contribute SUBSTANTIALLY to the Mexican economy and this MORE than offsets any privileges they may grant us. ….. don’t bite the hand that feeds you !

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi David,
        You write:
        I could not have predicted this would happen ( that’s why I never surrendered the TIP when leaving Mexico )

        Actually, for 4 years, we have a section describing exactly your common event and other reasons why one easily anticipates big headaches if you take your TIP vehicle out of Mexico without cancelling the TIP. See: Why not just drive out of Mexico, and keep the sticker on my windshield? and Leaving Mexico with the Vehicle: .

        These things have been known and reported on the internet for at least the past 7 years.
        We can choose one of several paths in life:
        We can do the work to educate ourselves on common problems, learn the rules, consult experts, and then choose paths that avoid known common problems….

        … or we can claim ignorance, and later stumble and complain about being the victim of “unfair” and “illogical” rules, when the predictable problems arise.

        You are certainly welcome to advise other people to ignore the rules, and roll the dice on causing themselves additional problems later, but as you found with your year-long effort to cancel your permit from the USA, ignoring the rules did not work out as you imagined.

        You are welcome to remain personally frustrated about how unfair Mexican rules are, and imagine that Mexico should change their Federal govt. policies to fit your personal expectations. Consider though, that England, Germany, Holland, der Schweitz, and the US do not change their national policies to suit the ideas of a few foreigners who did not follow the published rules, and I doubt that Mexico will change her rules in this case.

        Is it easier to swim-upstream for a solid year, (and express frustration for years later), or would most people, instead, choose to take 20 minutes of time to turn in their TIP as they leave Mexico – and preserve their deposit?
        Happy Trails,
        steve

      • Dave says:

        Steve,
        Sounds like we are having a bad day today ….a little testy ?
        You seem to overlook that until most people run into a problem with papers/cars/immigration etc. they would have no occasion to research all the laws in detail, just like anybody entering the U.S. would likewise not be aware of all the laws.
        It’s not a matter of swimming upstream or breaking laws but rather recognizing that things beyond your control do happen and rather than punish you Mexico would do well to treat it’s tourists and others with a little understanding when it is obvious that you are not intentionally trying to cheat them …. I realize that they probably won’t change but I repeat that they would do well to realize the financial contribution we all are making when it comes to deciding whether to be hardnosed or to be flexible..
        Regards the issue of leaving the country without cancelling the TIP, you forgot to mention that r.v.’s receive TIP’s for a 10 year period so why is it necessary or even required, to surrender said TIP when you are only using the r.v. for a temporary visit/vacation to the U.S.
        Likewise your TIP on your car is automatically renewed when your residency status is renewed
        ( and you notify Aduana of the change and get a letter back from them ), so why is it necessary to turn in your TIP for a temporary visit to the U.S. …… if not to just to exact a new fee and/or deposit.
        As long as you turn in your TIP(s) when you permanently leave the country or when you intend in advance to buy a new vehicle while in the U.S. I would tend to think you are within the guidelines ?

        We are probably going to have to agree to disagree on some issues but don’t take it personal. I am not encouraging anyone to do anything illegal but to be cognisant of the fact that Mexican laws are not fixed in stone but rather subject to interpretation by whichever official you are dealing with.
        Happy trails to you too .. we are still friends

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi David,
        You write:
        …you forgot to mention that r.v.’s receive TIP’s for a 10 year period so why is it necessary or even required, to surrender said TIP when you are only using the r.v. for a temporary visit/vacation to the U.S. …

        Did you read our section Why not just drive out of Mexico, and keep the sticker on my windshield?? It describes why people who travel away from the border zones should strongly consider turning in their TIP permits. Your unsuccessful experience of trying to cancel a TIP on a vehicle wrecked in the USA should confirm why it can be better to cancel the permit.

        If I appear testy, it is because your advice may cause Eric & Esther to have unnecessary significant problems with the Guatemala/Mexico Aduana border officials. The Guatemala border crossings historically are operated differently than the US/Mexico or Belize/Mexico crossings. We have 2 separate very reliable recent past reports of 2 different individuals being held up for days at those Guatemala crossings due to TIP issues.

        I believe that your advice is well-intentioned, but it is well off-the-mark from facts and recent reports on those crossings. Your experiences at other border crossings most likely do not apply to Eric & Esther’s situation.

        Continuing:
        Likewise your TIP on your car is automatically renewed when your residency status is renewed

        Our experience and discussions with Aduana supervisors and Banjercito supervisors said this is definitely not true.
        Hiram Cervera’s company has imported over 800 vehicles, and he just said this morning that Aduana does NOT automatically update our residence status, and he further said that Aduana does NOT even update our TIP expiration dates. Hiram pointed out that he can easily import 8 and 9 year old NAFTA TIP cars in Yucatan, for FM2, FM3, and Residente Temporal card holders, as long as the owner had no breaks in the INM permit, and as long as the applicant CAN PROVE that Aduana updated their expiration dates annually. Hiram said: The annual letter we solicit from Aduana is basically the only proof a TIP car owner can show to prove that their TIP is still valid after the first year. Aduana definitely does NOT update our records based on Hiram’s firms direct experience and based on our consultations with Aduana supervisors and Banjercito supervisors.

        I have personally looked Banjercito’s computer database records, and they definitely do not update them, unless we make specific applications to have our records updated.

        If I seem testy, it is because Hiram and myself just spent 2 hours this morning trying to de-bunk myths and rumors like the 3 you have proposed today. (I am smiling….) If I seem testy, it is because you cannot hear my tone, nor see facial expressions. I am more laughing and shaking my head at the vigorous persistence of rumors, myths, and misinformation that swirl around these rather important things.
        Happy Trails,
        steve

      • Dave says:

        Yes Steve I did read the referenced article about ” why surrender your TIP ” and given that the article appears to address the pitfalls of bringing in a a new vehicle in the event of vehicle loss or destruction or theft, and that you don’t have papers or sticker I’m not sure how those comments apply to leaving the country temporarily when you still have the 10 year permit and the matching paperwork/receipt. I don’t recall ever having read any rule saying you can’t leave the country temporarily with you r.v as long as you are in possession of the above referenced documents.
        With regards to a car ( not an r.v. ) you appear to be saying that Aduana will not extend your TIP even if you present a prorraga and proof of having updated your FM3 or 2 ……… yet your forum and the article referenced both provide examples of how to prepare the prorroga to have aduana effect this extension.
        I think you are pointing out that WITHOUT the prorroga, Aduana will not automatically update the TIP but with the proper prorroga and accompanying proof of residency update they WILL extebd your TIP and advise Banjecity of this update to avoid loss of deposit.
        Please clarify this is what you meant >>>
        Going back to my question about the r.v and a law saying you must surrender the sticker when leaving the country ….same question for the car. ….. if all the papers are in order and the TIP is updated by aduana and you have your renewed “Residencia Temporal ” in hand as well, which law states that you must surrender the TIP for temporary visits to the U.S and then buy another one upon re-entry ?
        We pass though Aduana regularly on an annual basis, once at the border and then again at the 50 Km checkpoint with both the r.v. and the car in tow and they scrutinize our papers at both points and have never asked us to buy new TIP’s and are quite satisfied with our papers and pass us through without incident.
        The only trouble we ever had was trying to bring in a new R.V. after the incident with the old one being destroyed in the U.S.

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi David,
        You wrote:
        I think you are pointing out that WITHOUT the prorroga, Aduana will not automatically update the TIP but with the proper prorroga and accompanying proof of residency update they WILL extend your TIP and advise Banjecity of this update to avoid loss of deposit.

        This is correct. According to Hiram Cervera’s experience, and according to what we have seen on Banjercito’s computer screens, Aduana and Banjercito do NOT actually update the expiration dates on the TIPs, unless we provide letters identifying the new INM permit expiration date. If fact, if you imported your car after June 2010, then Banjercito automatically cancels your permit within 15 days of the expiration date and confiscates the deposit on Day 15, if you have not submitted a letter to Aduana in time to stop the cancellation.

        Re Leaving Mexico and Returning Later on the Same TIP:
        The Aduana rules says that to leave Mexico legitimately, you should stop at the border and apply for a multiple exit/entry permit: Leaving Mexico with a TIP Vehicle and Returning Later – Multiple Exit/Entry Permits . The reference link to Aduana’s official rules on this are in this section of our main article on Importing a Car into Mexico. Also read: Partial Returns Program: Multiple Exit and Re-Entry Permit Program:

        This is one of those spots were the rule of the law, (10,000’s of people crossing and re-crossing the border daily), does not fit with trying to get all those day-trippers to get Multiple Exit/Entry permit letters. This is a rule that most Aduana personnel are not aware of, and is only occasionally enforced.

        All the best,
        steve

      • Thank you Dave for this very quick reply.
        It gives me some relieve and takes off some presure…
        We heard so many things from …you have to cancel the existing permit and buy a new one to …you won’t be allowed to re-enter to Mexico anymore and …you will be deep in trouble…
        Normally I have my odds and ends together but…
        So if the worst case would be to buy a new permit I would say “Whew” ! Since it is definitely our fault, that we mislaid those docs, I would be deeply grateful and accept this “penalty”…
        Thanky again…
        Esther

    • yucalandia says:

      Guten Tag, Esther and Erich,
      In theory, without the original paper permit, plan to spend 4 to 6 hours at a border Aduana office that also has a Banjercito office, trying to cancel your existing TIP, and getting a new TIP issued. Banjercito employees can help you start the process, submitting a cover letter and information package, but then you typically get kicked “upstairs” to some Aduana supervisor. Bring a good Spanish language application cover letter, describing
      1. Your name
      2. Your passport number
      3. The original TIP permit number
      4. An explanation that you want to cancel/surrender your TIP
      5. The VIN number, make, model, and year of the vehicle
      6. Title/Proof of ownership of the vehicle
      8. Registration papers for the vehicle
      9. Copies of any/all documents (including your passport’s first pages)
      10. Explain that you lost your original paper
      11. Explain that you want to apply for a NEW Permiso de Importación Temporal de vehiculo (TIP)

      Depending on how busy the Aduana supervisor is, you will likely wait at least 3 hours for him to evaluate your application letter and all your papers. After 3 hours they may ask you questions. Hopefully, after 4 hours they will bring you some papers to sign. They will then give you some papers to take back to the Banjercito office. In those 4-5 hours, Aduana will approve both the cancellation of your current TIP permit and approve/instruct Banjercito to issue you a new TIP. Banjercito will take fotos of your VIN at some point, and will remove your old sticker. You lose any deposit you previously made on the old TIP, because you lost the paper that you agreed to keep. You then pay a new fresh deposit for a new TIP.

      We have assisted others (as a facilitator) in doing it twice, and it does usually require some Spanish language fluency to make the processes work. Bring a book, some munchies, and a hand fan if the waiting area is hot.
      Hier stehe ich, ich kann nict anders….
      steve

      • Dave says:

        Steve has explained it well and this is MOST LIKELY how it will go, BUT as I mentioned before, depending on the mood of the aduana officer you MIGHT get lucky and he MAY let you back in without your papers ( based solely on the ” logic ” that you must have had the original paperwork to get the sticker )
        If you are really lucky and this happens, then DON’T even stop at the Mexican/US border on your way out to explain anything. It doesn’t really matter that you surrender your sticker, if you don’t plan on coming back to Mexico.
        I could be wrong and maybe Steve can answer this, but I think your r.v. permit (TIP) was NOT a deposit, but just rather a NON-refundable fee ? …. at least it was this way in the past.

      • Thank you Steve for your very prescise explanation.
        Seems you speak german fluently 😉
        I wish I could speak enough spanish to explain our bad situatioon to the mexican authorities once we will return to the border by mid of April. I took some spanish lessons in Mexico within the last 2 years and I hope it will do…
        I will prepare all the recommened paperwork and write some short letters/applications and finally I hope we will succeed…

        Nochmals ganz herzlichen Dank für die Hilfe
        Esther

  37. To Steve and Dave – just an additional information.

    “…then DON’T even stop at the Mexican/US border on your way out to explain anything…”
    Our problem is, that we want to return to Mexico with the same R.V. and drive all the way down to Tierra del fuego within the next years. Since the Banjercito is valid for 10 years, have to get rid of it as a proof that we have our vehicle out of the country.
    and… you are right Dave – we didn’t have to pay a deposit for our R.V. – there is still a non-refundable fee only for the “Banjercito”…

    • Dave says:

      Esther and Erich …. given your future intentions, and the fact that you intend to be out of the country for 3 years before returning, then by all means stop at the border and explain your intentions and see whether they want you to surrender the TIP and then buy a new one when you return in 3 years or whether you keep you existing TIP and use it again in 3 years.
      Thanks for clarifying that the cost of a TIP for an r.v. is just an outright fee and NOT a deposit, so if you don’t plan on returning and don’t turn it in, then all you are out is the fee and not a $400 – $600 deposit like you make for a car.
      It would be interesting to hear what Banjercito/Aduana tells you about whether or not you can keep your TIP and use it again in 3 years so PLEASE be sure to send a note to the forum letting us know what happened.
      Good luck

  38. Teresa C says:

    I have a permit that expires in May but would like to keep the vehicle in Mexico. Can I just go to border and return my sticker and then get a new one or does the vehicle have to be out of country for a specific lengh of time?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Teresa,
      What INM permit do you have? If Visitante, then yes, you can go replace both the INM permit and Aduana permit at a border crossing. If you have a Residente Temporal, then you can simply renew the car permit at your local Aduana office without going to the border – simply notifying Aduana/Banjercito that you are-renewing or have-renewed your Residente Temporal permit, and would like to extend your “Permiso de Importación de vehiculo” permit for another year.
      steve

      • Teresa C says:

        We have a visitors visa but they have already been renewed. So do we need to actually cross the border to renew the vehicle permit or can we just go to the place it was issued (Negales border ,a 2 day drive) and cancel one permit and get a new one

  39. Krista says:

    I am currently in Mexico on a tourist permit for 6 months. My fiance and I are waiting to find out whether our fiance visa will be approved so that he can go back with me to the U.S. The problem is that, as with anything involving the government, the fiance visa process will likely take from 8-12+ months. My tourist permit will expire before then, as will my vehicle importation permit. Is there any way that I can renew the vehicle importation permit without having to take it all the way back to the border from Mexico D.F.? Can I fly out for the required 24 hours and then come back with a new tourist permit and simply get a renewal on the vehicle importation permit? Is there any way to avoid taking the vehicle out of Mexico?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Krista,
      The only way to renew/change a visitors visa is if you are married to Mexican, have a Mexican family member, or are a refugee. Otherwise, both you and the car have to go to a border.
      Happy Trails,
      steve

  40. Esther says:

    Referring to my request of March 19th, 11:43
    A little bit late but as promised, I just wanted to give a feedback to what happened with our re-entry to Mexico with resp. without the lost Banjercito Docs.
    I have to say, it was quite easy.
    Seems it was not a too big issue, since we still had our sticker on the windshield.
    So we came to the border in El Carmen, GTM to cross into MEX to Tapachula.
    After having confessed to the customs officer, that we lost the docs, he was very friendly. We had to hand out the title of our truck and he went away, returned app. 20 min later and wanted to check the Nr. of the Banjercito sticker and after again app. 20 min. he told us, that we are fine but have to cancel the old docs and apply for a new one. Of course we agreed and he told us that this cannot be done right away but we have to go to the “Viva Mexico Customs” on “Mex 1” in Tapachula.
    We promised and he let us pass.
    We drove the few km to “Viva Mexico” and went to the Banjercito Office where also there the people were very friendly and helpful without any difficulties to get our problem solved. It took us some time but after about 3 hours all in one we had the old docs cancelled and got the new ones what we had to pay for again and that was it.
    Now we are back to the US again and had officially cancelled the actual Banjercito at the border in Nogales and when we will go back to Mex. for next winter, we can again apply for a new one.
    I hope this description of the procedure could be helpful to someone else and I would like to thank you again for your support.

  41. shelley edson says:

    What happens if you don’t have the windshield sticker? I have the paperwork – but no sticker – and never remember seeing it. Currently NOB and want to return mexico next week (FM3)

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Shelley,
      The sticker is part of the paper TIP permit. Is there a sticker still “in” or “on” your permit?

      There should be a sticker-shaped hole in the paper TIP permit. Does yours have that?

      If they notice no sticker, you will not be allowed to bring the car back into Mexico without the sticker. There are procedures for dealing with this problem, but they take some time. There is a problem with theft, and falsely using stickers to inappropriately bring in cars or stolen cars… which means they take missing stickers very seriously.
      steve

  42. mike says:

    First time poster,,, looks like a very knowleageable site…

    This may have been already discussed, if so excuse the repeat query.
    I have been in Mexico for almost a year now with my 1997 car. I crossed at Ciudad Juarez. After six months I renewed my Import license along with my FMM tourist visa at a Guatemala crossing (out and in) vacationing in Guatemala for a week. I again have to renew and was wondering if I can leave my car in Mexico while I go to Guatemala to renew my tourist visa, then with that go to Banejercito and renew my Import license for my car?

    Thanks in advance…

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Mike,
      Good question.

      Since your current Aduana TIP for the car is directly linked to your current FMM/Visitante visa, then when you cancel/surrender the current FMM – your vehicle TIP immediately expires – and the vehicle is illegal to drive.

      This means that you need to follow your prior agreement to take the vehicle OUT of Mexico before both your INM FMM permit and your Aduana TIP expires. e.g. The vehicle must go out of Mexico when you surrender the old/current FMM visitors visa. You cancel the TIP at the same time…

      When you have your new FMM/Visitante permit, you can also get a new TIP for the car.
      steve

  43. Jim Thompson says:

    Hi Steve
    Everybody I talk to gives me a different answer, Aduana, Banerjito, Customs brokers, can you still bring a RV as a tourist with a 10 year permit? Can you also tow a trailer or boat or do you need another permit? Need to know before we head to mexico next month and what names vehicles have to be in, traveling with 45 old son.

    Thanks, Jim

    • Jim Thompson says:

      The boat is 18′ on trailer with 2 motors.

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Jim,
      It’s rare for us to be stumped, but we personally don’t know of any reports on how Aduana has been handling things this year for RV’s and boats.

      If you decide to do it yourself, then go with Aduana and Banjercito requirements from the specific border crossing you plan to use (policies vary between crossing). If you decide to use a Customs Broker, then follow their requirements.

      For detailed CURRENT general information on your situation, I would cruise on over to the Baja Nomad board – which is chock full o’ knowledgeable folks who do this all the time. It’s a very eclectic web-board, but the people there have provided years of very good advice. http://forums.bajanomad.com/

      Be sure to mention that you will be traveling around Mexico, and not just staying in Baja California (BC) or Baja California Sur (BCS).

      When you have a solid answer – can you come back and give us a report – to help future readers?
      Happy Trails,
      steve

  44. Susana says:

    Steve:
    I a have a TIP that expires February 12, 2014. I was told by an Hacienda officer in Cuernavaca that I cannot renew it, but that I could get an extension of 5 days when the TIP expires to drive the vehicle out of the country. I ask her if I could leave the country and get another TIP for my vehicle? She told me that I can only get one TIP per vehicle per year. I entered Mexico in Laredo but now I am close to Mexico City. My idea was to drive to a Guatemalan border, surrender my TIP and apply for a new one (and get a new FMM at the same time). I am wiling to go to the Mexico City Aduana at the Airport but I do not know if that would help or not. Do you have any advice for me? I need to stay 3 weeks more after the expiration of my TIP and do not want to loose my $420 US deposit.
    Thank you in advance.
    Susana

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Susana,
      Your TIP expires with your FMM visitor visa. When you applied for it, you agreed in writing to take your car out of Mexico by that expiration date.

      You could go to the Guatamala border and surrender both your FMM visitors card and your TIP. One fellow reported last year that they made him exit Mexico for 3 days – but we have heard no other reports of this. At the Belize/Mexico border crossing point near Chetumal, you don’t even leave Mexico. You do it all within the border check-point area.

      We would love to hear people’s experiences from this past year, with the new INM rules, for crossing at the Mexico Guatemala border. Any quirks?
      steve

  45. Dave says:

    Was reading through some of the earlier comments and noticed somewhere that the deposit made on cars is returned to the same credit card used to make the deposit in the first place.
    What happens if that credit card is no longer valid for whatever reason …. like card stolen or compromised and a new one issued with a different number, or you just cancelled the card and got a new one with a different bank.
    How do you get your money back when you leave the country and surrender your TIP ?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Dave,
      Give them a different card. It would seem that in your case, it would be best that the person who received the original TIP should be the same one who surrenders the TIP and claims the refund of the deposit. As a bank, Banjercito should be able to easily make the change of card numbers for re-routing the credit.
      steve

  46. Claudia Rodríguez says:

    Hola alguien me puede ayudar? Lo que pasa que el año pasado (2013) se cumplió un año qe sacamos una teoka para México y no debolbimos el permiso x que se choco mi troka. Y la troka se quedo en México. Y ahora en marso(2014) planeábamos ir a México sólo de vacaciones. Ir en troka y regresar en ella. Mi troka es de déaler y no se sí ya algún problema si la sacamos y que tengo que aser para resolver el problema gracias

  47. DIANE ST-JEAN says:

    Hi,
    I need information please. I am totally lost and cant find clear answers to my questions anywhere.

    I am Canadian and I plan to drive to the Yucatan and live there as a tourist for about 1 year. Since I will come back to Canada every 4 months, I will get a new tourist visa every time.

    The problem is with the car … This is the plan: First, my husband and I will drive down to Mexico. Then, my husband will return to Canada by plane, leaving me in Playa del Carmen with the car. Every 4 months, I will return to Canada by plane. The car will remain in Playa del Carmen during my visits to Canada. Finally, at the end of the year, my husband will fly down to Playa and we will both drive back to Canada.

    First question:
    The car belongs and is registered in my husband’s name. Since he will fly back to Canada while I will remain in Mexico, should the documents for the “Importación Temporal” of the car be in HIS name, in MY name or in BOTH names ? Would it be better if we were to change the registration of the car to be in both names ?

    Second question:
    Are there any issues with my plan to fly back to Canada every 4 months ? With the renewal of my tourist card, the dates will not match the Importacion Temporal permit for the car any more ?

    Third question:
    The “Importación Temporal” permit is limited to 6 months. Since I will have the car in Mexico for one year, I was planning to drive out to Belize and back into Mexico once in a while in order to extend the dates. Is this the best way to deal with the date issues ? Also, I read that the vehicle has to leave by the same border where it first entered. Is this true ? Will it be possible to go to Belize ?

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Diane,
      The answers to all your questions are in our master article on driving and cars in Mexico: https://yucalandia.com/driving-in-mexico-issues-fun/importing-driving-a-car-in-mexico/

      The article has many sections, but each section has a header-title – and all the section header titles are listed in a table – as live buttons you can click – to jump down to the topic you are interested in.

      If you read our main article, you would find that the TIP car becomes illegal to drive the moment you cancel your INM visitor’s visa as you check-in, to board an airplane out of Mexico. You can also read in our main article on cars, that Mexican states have up to $5 million pesos of damages owed per person killed in an auto accident – and that by driving a foreign-plated car that is in the country illegally, you could be on the hook personally for $20 million pesos ~cash~ , and sit in jail until you can pay, if a family of 4 was killed in a car accident with you. Since the insurance companies can claim that your car is illegal, you lose all accident protection – regardless of what the insurance company salesman (aka insurance “agent”) tells you.

      So, don’t fly out of Mexico and come back later and drive your foreign plated car, without going to the border and getting a new TIP. Fortunately, it’s a relatively easy drive down to outside Chetumal to the Subteniente Lopez/Santa Helena border crossing to Belize. You can do it all legally by getting a free Retorno Seguro 5 business day permit (see that main article on cars) from Hacienda/SAT – every time the car TIP holder leaves Mexico – and surrender the old dead TIP at the Belize border, and get a new TIP.

      To preserve the $$ deposit, if you had BOTH names on the registration and title, then every time one spouse (on the TIP) leaves the country, you could make a quick trip to Chetumal, cancel that TIP (to recover the $$ deposit), and get a new TIP in the name of the spouse staying in Mexico. Do this dance every time the TIP holder leaves Mexico… or just buy a good used car here??

      Still, Chetumal is nice – good food, interesting truly Duty Free shopping in the Free Zone of Corozal (Belize), casinos in the free zone. Change both your TIP and get a new tourist visa when you go….

      Re your final question: Any website or persons that says you have to exit the same border crossing that you entered, should be ignored on pretty much all immigration and customs issues. That advice worked part of the time ~ over 5 years ago ~ back in the bad old days when the Mexican government used paper records. The Mexican INM and car permit tracking systems have been in place for years – meaning the people dispensing that bad advice have not bothered to take time to learn the last 5 years of important changes in Aduana (Customs) and INM (Immigration) changes.

      Hope I answered all your questions,
      steve

      • yucalandia says:

        Diane,
        All the answers I gave you are accurate reliable “inside-the-box” solutions – but a bit of a PITA.

        Fortunately, since you will be living in a SPECIAL “free zone” => Quintana Roo, as a foreigner, you can have a foreign-plated car with valid (current) foreign license plates and registration FOR FREE with NO PERMIT needed – as long as you do NOT drive the car outside of Q.Roo.

        So, drive the car into Mexico, and get a TIP associated with whomever owner is listed on the title and registration. When you get to Q.Roo, make a nice trip down to Chetumal, and surrender the TIP to Banjercito/Aduana and collect your $$ deposit, and drive back into Q. Roo with NO TIP, as a legal foreign-plated vehicle in the Free Zone of Quintana Roo… (exactly like the free zone of Baja California)…

        Keep driving the car – exclusively in Q. Roo – with no more trips to the border.

        When it is time to drive back north, then either:
        ~ go to Chetumal and get a TIP to drive across Mexico at your leisure (on your schedule)…
        or
        ~ go to Hacienda/SAT and get a 5 business-day Retorno Seguro permit to drive across Mexico during that 5 business day period specified by Hacienda. (driving on their schedule) …

        Cute and easy solution?
        (buy me lunch?)
        steve

      • stjeandiane says:

        Hey, if you are close enough, I will certainly buy you lunch … What you are describing sounds so much easier !
        I have to admit, I did not understand much about the previous stuff. I find it difficult to know what applies or does not apply to people travelling with a tourist card (FMT). Is this the same as an INM visa ? .. sorry, this lady here is totally confused.
        LOL, I just figured out what PITA stood for (hé … you have to forgive me, I am French-canadian!). The insurance company tells me that the insurance is invalid if the car does not have a valid TIP (another abreviation I finally de-coded !). Just out of curiosity, I havent seen anywhere about Quintana Roo being a Free-zone. Is this a new thing ?

        Thank you soooo much for helping me !
        Diane

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi Diane,
        Like Baja California, Quintana Roo has been a federally designated “Free Zone” for years, but very few gringos know this.

        If you explain to Mexican insurance companies that Q. Roo is a Free Zone like Baja California, they can understand that your insurance coverage does work because your foreign-plated car – with current Canadian registration & current Canadian plates – is fully legal to drive in Q. Roo or Baja California without getting a TIP. If you are trying to use Canadian insurance – you likely want to drop the Canadian coverage for the year you are here and get Mexican insurance – because Canadian policies are not designed for Mexico.

        In Mexico, we need an extra rider on the policy that guarantees a substantially large $$ “fiscal bond” to guarantee cash payments to injured parties (both medical injuries and physical damage). In a car accident in Mexico, many times all parties go to jail unless they can prove they have the $$ cash assets to cover any medical or physical damages. You sit in jail for days, waiting for the police to determine the maximum possible damages for each party, and your insurance company’s local representative negotiates with the police to prove you have that protection. In many/most Mexican jail (temporary) detention, there is no water and no food unless your family or friends bring it – so sitting for 3 or 4 days in jail without food or water is no fun.

        A fiscal bond rider keeps us out of that temporary detention jail – and Canadian and US policies and credit card insurance protections do NOT include this very important coverage option.

        Further, your insurance representative coming directly to the site of the accident to do road-side negotiations with the police and the other parties’ insurance rep is critical. American insurance companies, Canadian insurance companies, and credit card protections also do not send out representatives on-site to resolve things – so, without a skilled representative advocating for you at the scene of the accident, you may go to jail for days until things are resolved.

        Good Mexican insurance companies have claims representatives in the area to come and represent you and keep you out of jail.

        With a good insurance company, an accident means 2-4 hours of waiting around and negotiating with police and other parties – but it also means you stay out of jail. Many times your agent will negotiate a cash settlement on the spot – or offering to hospitalize any injured parties at a good private hospital, ending any problems for you.

        Re FMM/FMT: First, there have been no FMTs since Oct. 2012. Any site or any person who mentions FMT is out of date and untrustworthy. Second, you get a 6 month visitante permit from INM when entering Mexico. FMM is the basic form that ALL foreigners fill out when leaving or entering Mexico. The “FMM” terminology is often used interchangeably for INM visitor permit, but that is not strictly true because FMM is a multi-purpose form (e.g. I as Permanent Resident of Mexico get an FMM every time I leave Mexico, and Permanent Residents give half of the FMM form to INM to log my exit, and I reenter Mexico with the other half of that FMM – strictly as a tracking device for my exits and entries).

        So, yes, your visitante permit from INM, using an FMM form, gives you 6 months of time in Mexico, which Aduana uses to issue you a 6 month TIP.

        All the best,
        and
        Happy Trails,
        steve

        ps. While you are here, and after you turn in your TIP, I can email you a copy of a letter from Aduana’s main federal office in Distrito Federal, documenting that it is legal for foreigners to drive their legally-plated foreign cars, with NO TIP, in Q. Roo, because some small town cops do not know the actual rules, and showing them a printout of an official email from the main federal Aduana headquarters gets them to shrug and let you go on your way.

      • stjeandiane says:

        Steve, you are so helpful ! I thank you so much !
        Diane
        P.S. My trip is in August. So how do I get in touch with you then to get that Aduana letter ?
        Also, I dont want to abuse your kindness but if I have other issues during my one year stay, can I consult with you ? Thanks again

      • yucalandia says:

        Hi Diane, Sure questions are welcomed here.

        Re the email/letter from Aduana, I’ll send it to the email you used to log on here. I don’t like other websites misusing my email (required for logons), so I do my best to not use Yucalandia reader’s emails, until they give permission. Keep an eye on that email address’s inbox.
        steve

  48. Muy buenas tardes Steve,

    Ive been lurking on Yuclandia for various years now and ALWAYS find the info incredibly useful and up to date. THANK YOU.

    My question / situation is similar to Dianes, in that I have a 1993 ford ranger pickup with CO plates that was ALWAYS temp imported in puerto morelos and then in 2011 made a trip to Belize for a week of tourism and got another new sticker/paid 200 bucks. That sticker was never renewed, the truck has stayed in QROO, and now I have the PERMANENT residency and will be selling the vehicle to a north american who comes down every year with TOURIST VISA.

    So, the question is,1) do YOU believe that it is a legal requirement for me to go to cancun and get a SAFE RETURNS permit in order to drive the 6 hours to Belize with this friend, who will then have the original titled signed over to him and get a NEW TIP in his name when coming back into the country?

    OR, since we are in the zona libre, does this requirement change? become more lenient?

    2) For the drive down do you think its imperitive that HE is driving the truck or can I drive (even though I have now my Permanent Residency..of course I also have my American Passport and American drivers license AND QROO drivers license..but in theory I could just show my Passport and US drivers to any cop who stopped me and they would not know my immigration status.

    3) The local AXA insurance had on the vehicle is now expired. AXA will not be able to issue a new policy to this friend until he has the vehicle TIP imported in his name (I believe.)…so does the RET SEGURO give the holder any kind of coverage or “get out of jail free”card if, god forbid, there was some kind of fender bender between Playa and Belize?

    As always, I will be so VERY thankful for you advice and i understand FULLY that it is only advice and that the ultimate responsibility is ours.

    Yours in Health,

    Joseph

    • yucalandia says:

      Hi Joseph,
      Excellent questions.
      It’s clear you understand things well, as you have considered all the key points.

      In legal theory, you would need a Retorno Seguro permit with him (and you?) listed as the drivers to take the car to the border.

      In practice, who knows what the various police may do if you were stopped.

      To invoke the Free Zone privileges, you would need to have current US plates and current US registration. The Aduana folks at the Belize border have given out fresh TIPs in the past to vehicles with expired US registrations, but they have the option of accepting the current (expired?) registration or requiring that you get the vehicle registered (though we have no – zero – reports of them enforcing this requirement), since Aduana’s main concern is that the vehicle is not stolen ~ so your current plan has worked well for other people we know from both Merida and Q. Roo.

      The insurance issue is a mess… Even if you had an AXA policy in force now, are you sure that there is not some fine-print clause buried in their policy, requiring that the vehicle be legally license / legally registered? The Retorno Seguro permit does make the vehicle legal for those 5 business days, making it fully eligible to insure. (a 5 day insurance policy???)

      And as always, our writings are not professional advice, they are just information/educational points.

      Best of Luck!
      steve

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