This article describes what happens when your residency card expires, —whether you are in Mexico, or outside of Mexico— and the process that exists for renewal of expired residency cards.
Permanent Residency Cards
If you are 18 or older and hold a permanent residency card (Residente Permanente) for Mexico, this never expires and does not need to be renewed, but you do need to advise the immigration office of things like change of address, marital status, and job if you work in Mexico.
Minors (under 18 years) with Permanent Residency must renew their cards periodically—see this article for details.
You must be physically in Mexico
All temporary residency card renewal applications must be processed in-person at an immigration office in Mexico. You cannot apply to renew them at a Mexican consulate abroad, and you cannot renew by proxy.
Renewals of Mexico residency cards
To apply for renewal of your Mexican temporary residency card while it is still valid (not expired), you should file the application for the renewal during the 30-day window prior to the card’s expiry date. You cannot apply for renewal before this 30-day window. See this article for details of the renewal process.
Grace period on expired residency permits
If you forget to renew before the expiry date or if your situation prevents you from using the 30-day window prior to the expiry date, there is grace period starting on the expiry date in which you can apply to renew your temporary residency card.
Important note about Temporary Residency to Permanent Residency
Whether you are overseas or in Mexico, if you’re intending to exchange your current Temporary Residency card for Permanent Residency after having passed 4 consecutive years of Temporary Residency status in Mexico, you must not let your residency card expire.
If you do not renew your temporary residency card before its expiry date and renew it within the grace period described here, that process will reset your accrued time as Temporary Resident and issue you with a new, 1-year temporary residency permit.
You’ll need to sustain that new permit for 4 consecutive years (without letting it expire) before you can apply to make the exchange from temporary to permanent residency.
Residency card expires when you are inside Mexico
If you are physically in Mexico when your residency card expires, and you miss the 30-day window to renew the card, you must file for temporary residency renewal within a 60 calendar day grace period of the card’s expiry date. If your card is more than 60 days past its expiry date you cannot renew your residency card and must start over again with the application process.
Residency card expires when you are outside of Mexico
If you are overseas when your residency card expires, you can re-enter Mexico as a resident and apply for a regular renewal of your residency status provided that:
- you enter Mexico within 55 calendar days after the card’s expiry date and
- file your renewal application within 5 calendar days of your reentry date, and
- provided not more than 60 calendar days have passed since the card’s expiry date, then
- you can begin a regular renewal process.
If you arrive in Mexico 56-60 days after the expiry date on your resident card, you can enter a ‘regularization’ process to renew your residency but we don’t recommend you leave it to the last minute as you might run out of time before you can file your application on the system.
Residency cards more than 60 days expired
If your Mexico residency card is over 60 calendar days expired, you cannot return to Mexico as a resident using the card if you’re overseas, and you cannot enter into a procedure to renew an expired residency card if you’re in Mexico.
If you want to continue having legal residency in Mexico you will need to restart an application for residency, usually from a Mexican consulate abroad unless you have certain family connections in Mexico.
Leaving Mexico with an expired temporary residency card
If you have an expired temporary residency card and you want to leave Mexico and not renew your residency status, you can leave but you will need to attend the immigration desk/kiosk before you depart and pay a fine.
The fine depends on the official’s assessment of your circumstances. Contact the INM for details about this, or visit the immigration office/kiosk at your port of exit for further information.
Get assistance with your expired temporary residency card
If you need personal assistance to help you prepare your renewal application, dealing with renewal procedures, or advice with troubleshooting, consider using our Mexico Immigration Assistance service.
Learn more about residency in Mexico
Mexperience publishes information and resources to help you learn about how to apply for and obtain legal residency in Mexico:
- How to renew your Mexico residency card
- Learn about the principal routes to obtaining legal residency
- Here are the latest financial criteria required to qualify for residency in Mexico
- Compare the difference between Temporary and Permanent residency
- Find the latest residency-related fees charged by Mexico’s government
- Our free Mexico Immigration Guide encapsulates essential information about visas and residency permits for Mexico.
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