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BECOMING A NON-RESIDENT OF CANADA FOR TAX PURPOSES

If you are a Canadian residing in Mexico, you should consider the possibility of becoming a non-resident Canadian for tax purposes only. This article will explain how to do that. It will not consider the benefits or advantages for making this selection. This is always a personal decision and will be based on individual choices, values, and priorities. We will review the practical steps and will attempt to eliminate common myths regarding non-residency status for Canadians. Other than the tax benefits of renouncing their residency status, Canadians should remember that, if they reside outside of Canada for more than 183 days,...

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5 Most Important Points to Review in a Promissory Agreement

Once an offer to purchase has been accepted, the next step is to complete a promissory agreement. The promissory agreement in Mexico is a formal and legally binding document that outlines the details and terms of the real estate transaction once all negotiations are final. It outlines details such as the legal description of the property, the final price, any penalties and other clauses agreed on by both parties. This agreement is the foundation of the transaction as the details of this contract will be used later to complete the sale and transfer the Title Deed. In the process of purchasing...

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LAWYERS VERSUS CLOSING COMPANIES

Although they have been around for some time, closing companies are now becoming more and more prevalent. Essentially, these closing companies or “settlement” companies, are operated by ex-patriots that believe that, because they have experienced firsthand the process of purchasing real estate in Mexico, they can advise and consult others on the process. For a fixed fee, they will read the offer provided by a realtor, make some comments, and then introduce you to a preselected notary and bank to finalize the process. They will, essentially, transfer the most critical part of the process to the notary and the bank...

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Applying for a Job Offer Visa in Mexico

If you are a foreigner and have received a job offer in Mexico, or you are a foreigner with a business in Mexico and plan on working in this country, you will need permission to work. The official name is “Visa por oferta de empleo” (Job Offer Visa). This procedure allows you to live and work in Mexico. The process consists of two steps which are completed in Mexico and one step to be completed outside the country at a Mexican consulate. The process will begin in Mexico. It requires a job offer from a Mexican company; this company should have “Constancia...

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Upcoming Live Webinar: U.S.-Mexican Tax and Estate Planning for Cross-Border Clients

Important Information or US Citizens Investing in Mexico I am pleased to announce that I will be speaking in an upcoming Strafford Live Webinar, "U.S.-Mexican Tax and Estate Planning for Cross-Border Clients" scheduled for Tuesday, November 14, 1:00pm-2:30pm EST. The lengthy Mexico-U.S. border and extensive ties between the two countries result in significant economic migration. Many U.S. citizens and permanent residents have property interests in Mexico and vice-versa. Estate planning counsel and advisers must identify the tax and wealth transfer planning rules and opportunities specific to U.S. and Mexican citizens with assets and presence in both countries. Mexican law has neither an estate...

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The Law of Hidden Defects in Mexico

Hidden defects are an important point in the process of purchasing a property in Mexico. The definition of hidden defects is those possible defects that a property may have, which could not be known to the buyer at the time of purchase. A defect is classified as a "hidden defect" if: It is not obvious and cannot be recognized by a simple inspection. The buyer is unaware of the defect. The property was defective at the time of the sale. The seller is responsible for a hidden defect even if they were unaware of the defect. The seller will be obliged to repair...

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Foreigners and Tax Obligations in Mexico

Whether you are an individual earning an income in Mexico, or a business owner in Mexico, you have certain income reporting and tax obligations. This article includes a brief description of the most common taxes and contributions, as well as the corresponding authority. As an employer in Mexico, you are responsible for the following contributions and taxes Payroll Tax 3% of the total salary of the employees is to be submitted monthly to the State Government. The Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social As an employer, you are obligated to pay IMSS for health services and...

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Making a Mark for Yourself in Mexico

Trademarks are those symbols or signs used to distinguish products or services in the market; they must be registered to identify them from the competition and to avoid confusion with other companies. By registering the trademark, businesses obtain multiple benefits such as exclusive use, which provides the certainty that the trademark may not be used legally by a third party without authorization. The registration of a trademark has a validity of 10 years from the moment of its application and may be renewed before or after the term expires. Trademarks registered in Mexico are only in effect within the Mexican Republic. However,...

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Risky Business: Extending a Tourist Card Through a Border Run

Many foreigners living in Mexico enter as a tourist which typically grants them a 180 day stay. Once their 180-days is up, they leave Mexico and make a “border run.” For residents of the Riviera Maya, this may mean a quick trip to Belize in hopes of re-entering Mexico and gaining another 180-day visitors card. Although the act of leaving Mexico and returning later is not illegal, many times these border runs entail a bribe to the official on the other side making this an illegal and risky process. Mexican Immigration authorities also see this as an abuse of the...

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Who Will Inherit Your Property in Mexico?

Many foreigners invest in real estate in Mexico to benefit from the high returns on investment that this market offers, to enjoy their leisure time here by owning vacation property, to retire, or a combination of all of the above. Ironically, few foreigners give any thought to what will occur to their property in the event of death. The purpose of this article is to provide some insights on how Mexican Law will deal with property owned by foreigners upon death and, hopefully, will provide foreigners with some suggestions on how to deal with this situation. A foreigner with property in...

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