Mexico Work Visa: How to Legally Employ Foreigners

If you are planning to register a company in Mexico, you will need to follow a number of steps in order to be able to hire non-Mexican nationals. For anyone planning to relocate to the country to run the company, or who otherwise intends to employ foreigners, being eligible to obtain a Mexico work visa will be essential.

A Biz Latin Hub map of Mexico and some key cities, the featured image for our Mexico work visa article.
A map of Mexico and some key cities

Note that anyone from, or who holds proof of residency or a valid business visa for, Canada, the European Union, Japan, the United Kingdom, or the United States — among other countries — does not require a visa to enter Mexico for business purposes for up to 180 days per year. 

The same applies to anyone who holds citizenship or permanent residency from a member of the Pacific Alliance — a ten-year-old economic integration initiative that includes Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru.

Below, a six-step guide to registering your company to be able to issue a Mexico work visa and the subsequent application process for an employee is provided.

If you would like more information on how we can assist you entering the market and doing business in Mexico, contact us today.

How to register your company to be able to offer a Mexico work visa

In order for your Mexican entity to be able to issue a Mexico work visa to foreigners, you will need to follow these six steps:

1. Register the fiscal address of your company 

In order for your company to be able to get a Mexico work visa for foreigners, its fiscal address, and those of any branches, must be registered. 

2. Apply for an Employer Certificate

The next step to being able to get a Mexico work visa for foreigners is to apply for an Employer Certificate, which will be issued by the National Migration Institute (INM). You will need to provide the following documentation to the INM:

  • Proof of enrollment in the Federal Taxpayer Registry
  • Proof of filing your most recent tax return
  • List of all planned employees, including the nationality of each
  • Completed and signed Employer Certificate request form

Note that, in the event your application is being made by a legal representative in Mexico, documented evidence of their powers of attorney to act on your behalf will also need to be provided.

The process to review and approve an Employer Certificate generally takes between two and four months. The Certificate will also need to be re-applied for on an annual basis.

3. Apply for an employee’s Mexico work visa

Once the Employer Certificate has been issued, you will be able to apply for a Mexico work visa for employees. In order to do so, the following documentation will need to be provided to the INM in support of each employee’s application:

  • The entity’s valid Employer Certificate
  • An identification document for any legal representative acting on your behalf
  • A copy of the identification page of the passport of the foreign employee
  • Proof of the job offer
  • A completed request document signed by the legal representative

As long as all is in order with the application, you will then be issued an authorization document by the INM.

4. Apply for a provisional work visa at a local consulate

The Mexican consulate in Atlanta, Georgia, featured image for Mexico work visa article
The Mexican consulate in Atlanta, Georgia

With the authorization document issued, your employee will need to go in person to a local Mexican consulate to apply for a provisional visa. They will need to provide the following documentation:

  • A provisional visa application form
  • A copy of the INM authorization
  • Their passport
  • Two recent headshot photographs with white backgrounds in which they are not wearing glasses

A fee of $40 will need to be paid in support of the application (all figures in USD).

Once the provisional Mexico work visa is issued, the employee will be able to travel to Mexico to apply for the visa itself.

5. Have the Mexico work visa issued

With the provisional visa issued, and having traveled to Mexico, your employee will need to visit the immigration office to have their Mexico work visa issued. This will require presentation of the following documents:

  • The applicant’s passport 
  • A copy of the identification page of the passport
  • A copy of the passport visa stamp
  • A completed Multiple Migration form (both the original and a copy)
  • A completed Mexico work visa application form
  • Proof of fee payment

Note that this application will also come with a fee, which may vary.

6. Report to the immigration office

Once the visa itself has been issued, the employee will need to report to the immigration office, where they will have their fingerprints taken and have to provide personal information. When doing so, they will need to present the following documentation:

  • Their passport
  • A document issued by the INM confirming that the work visa has been issued
  • Three recent headshot photographs with white backgrounds in which they are not wearing glasses

Once this has been completed, the applicant will have to wait for final approval of their Mexico work visa, and then report back to the immigration office, where it will be issued.

Biz Latin Hub can assist you doing business in Mexico

At Biz Latin Hub, we have the people in place and expertise to assist you in every aspect of entering the market and doing business in Mexico. We offer a comprehensive portfolio of corporate support solutions, including accounting & taxation, company formation, legal services, and visa processing

That allows us to offer tailored packages of integrated back-office services to meet every individual need for our clients in Mexico, as well as the 16 other markets around Latin America and the Caribbean where we have teams in place.

Let us help you through the process of registering your company to be able to apply for a Mexico work visa for any foreign employees you have, as well as supporting you in the process of applying for those visas.

Contact us today to find out more about how we can help you achieve your commercial goals.

Or read about our team and expert authors.

Key services offered by BLH including legal services, accounting & taxation, hiring & PEO, due diligence, tax advisory, and visa processing
Key services offered by Biz Latin Hub

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