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What You Need to Know as a Foreigner with a Child in Mexico

If you have a child in Mexico as a foreigner, it is important that you know about the child support laws and the newest amendment that came into effect as of April 16, 2016. Going forward, anyone who is overdue on their child support payments will be stopped by immigration when they attempt to leave Mexico.

With the increasing support of technology and better tracking of debt owed to custodial parents, it will continue to become more difficult for parents that do not make their child support payments to avoid them. More and more children are born into dual nationality families, and the enforcement is increasing to include both countries to ensure children are financially supported.

Regardless which country you live in or where your child lives, you are obligated to pay child support. Ignoring your obligations will lead to legal problems and travel interruptions. Whether child support payments are late due to lack of communication, job changes or health issues you will need to rectify the problem. If you are unable to keep up your obligations to your child, you may seek legal counsel and request different arrangements for support.

Mexico´s new amendment to article 48 of the Federal Immigration Law was created to help enforce the collection of overdue child support. If you are a foreigner or a Mexican National who is two months overdue on your child support payments and there is a court order regarding the child support filed, this new law will affect you.

Mexican lawmakers are following the trend of the United States, which does not allow citizens who are in arrears of child support to renew their passport and have even confiscated passports, prohibiting them to leave the country until their debt is paid. Canada has a similar penalty, your passport will be suspended and possibly cancelled along with  certain federal marine and aviation licences if you are in arrears of child support payments.

The Mexican government has had some issues with the new law, although they say it is not a detention, you will need to pay your overdue amount before you may leave the country.