What is the change? The Instituto Nacional de Migración (INM) is expected to make significant staffing reductions in the coming weeks under an austerity law approved earlier this year.

What does the change mean?
 The change could compound processing delays that companies in Mexico have been experiencing for months. Employers should continue to plan ahead and submit applications as early as possible.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: All visas and permits.
  • Who is affected: Employers and foreign nationals applying for Mexican visas and permits.
  • Impact on processing times: Processing times continue to be significantly longer than normal. Exact processing times vary depending on the type of visa or permit and the region of the country.
  • Business impact: Employers may need to adjust start dates and timelines because of the ongoing delays.

Additional information: Employers in Mexico have been grappling with immigration processing delays for months, the result largely of government personnel changes and increased migration from Central America. There are few signs that the trend will reverse itself. Mexico struck an agreement with the United States to increase enforcement of irregular migration, and the upcoming personnel reductions are expected to exacerbate the slowdown in processing.

The INM is also under new leadership after Francisco Garduño Yáñez took over as commissioner last month. Observers expect Garduño Yáñez will take a stricter approach on immigration.

Some employers have already reported an uptick in immigration and security checks for foreign nationals traveling in Mexico or entering the country. Foreign nationals are reminded to carry their passport and original immigration document with them while working, on business or when traveling in Mexico. Foreign nationals traveling to Mexico should be prepared to present their passport, visa (if required) and documentation showing the purpose of their trip. Visa-required nationals should expect the possibility of longer security checks.

Analysis & Comments: Mexico continues to face significant processing delays that could be compounded by additional personnel changes. While it is difficult to predict the direction the INM will take under the new leadership, the focus of resources on irregular migration and the personnel reductions suggest that delays are likely to continue at least through the end of the year. Employers are encouraged to plan ahead as best as possible. Employers may also wish to remind employees to carry proper documentation when traveling in or to Mexico, especially in light of reports of increased immigration and security checks.

Source: Deloitte LLP. Deloitte LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC303675 and its registered office at 1 New Street Square, London EC4A 3HQ, United Kingdom.