Recently I wrote about the new process for obtaining permanent resident cards for those never had immigration paperwork or theirs had expired. Two things were missing that I need to stress. In order to work in Mexico, you also need a work permit which can be obtained at no-cost, if you told the Consulate about it when you applied for your card. If you need to get it later, you will need to apply at Immigration in Puerto Peñasco and there will be a fee. Secondly, you are not eligible for the permanent card unless you have already had proper documents (for example FM2) for 4 years, even though it may be expired.
I said I would write more about the temporary resident card. The difference between this one and the permanent one is that: 1. You spend less than 75% of your time in Mexico; or 2. You have not previously had valid immigration papers for a period of at least 4 years. The process for this card must take place start to finish in Mexico. You may also perform the entire permanent resident card process in Mexico. It is not necessary to go to a Consulate in the U.S. to accomplish this. Many just choose to follow the Consulate process.
The permanent resident card need never be renewed, but if you have any changes, such as address or name change, you must inform Immigration in Puerto Peñasco within thirty days of the date of the change. The temporary resident card is issued for the first time for only 1 year. After that you may renew for a period of 1, 2, or 3 years. After the 4th year, you are eligible for the permanent resident card.
Remember that laws and procedures are constantly changing. For example, recently friends went through the Consulate process in Phoenix. It is no longer conducted on the 3rd floor in the private offices, but on the ground floor where all the other processes are conducted. They did have all the right documents, but it still took them 5 hours to complete the process. Fees also can change and there are nuances to the law that makes some cases different. It is impossible to cover all those differences here.
So I have a recommendation for you. There is a business in town called Sun Valley Business and Immigration Services. They are located in Plaza del Sol on Fremont Blvd. The business was founded by the Wilsons in 2002 and provided for immigration services. Bianey Montenegro started working for them 2004. In 2005 she became a partner and in 2006, she and her sister Dynora bought the business.
Sun Valley office in front and on the left at Plaza del Sol
The three (well really four) sisters
I recently heard about their service from a friend who used them and was very very impressed. So I decided to go talk to them. Well it turned out to be not an interview for the newspaper as I usually conduct them, but a chat fest with four absolutely wonderful, accomplished and interesting ladies.
I first chatted with Bianey and then little sister Yenny joined us. Eventually Suliana and Dynora joined in. Yenny started working part time with her sisters when she was in college and is now working full time after having received her college degree. All three sisters were born and raised in Puerto Peñasco and attended schools here. Bianey and Dynora also attended college in Mexicali. They are a real local success story and great role models for business women (or those who want to be) in Puerto Peñasco. The fourth sister, Suliana, may not be a sister by blood but she is certainly a sister by all other measures and has been working with the others for over 10 years.
Trip to Hermosillo
Many of you have heard that when you begin your process in Puerto Peñasco, you must make 2 trips to Hermosillo in order to complete the process and get your card. Well that is true if you are doing everything yourself. If you use the services of Sun Valley, they arrange and accompany you on the 1-day trip, with van services provided by Peñasco Recreation for your fingerprints and final paperwork. Then with your authorization, they are able to return to Hermosillo without you to pick up your card.
Business is Growth
Sun Valley has also added the services of accounting for individual small business and bill paying services. In January of next year, they will expand their accounting services to larger businesses due to another change in the law. They can also help you obtain the tax ID number (Hacienda) for your business. One unique service that they offer is consultation. If you are not sure you want to use their services, you may pay for a consultation only and they will review your situation and advise what you need to do. They have two very comprehensive hand-outs that they will provide for you. Then if you decide to purchase their service, the fee for the consultation is credited to the fee for the service.
Not that I am any type of expert, but I certainly endorse this business. They have been in existence for 11 years, the ladies are local residents and invested in the community, they are constantly staying up with all the latest changes in the laws and procedures, and they are developing their business as their clients’ needs develop. And if that isn’t enough for you – I promise you a very pleasant experience dealing with these delightful women.
Just a quick note about two of my favorite places: Regina’s on Josefa O. de Domínguez has closed and they now have a new place next door to Dr. Padilla, just south of No Reelección and west of Benito Juarez. Look for Dr. Padilla’s large sign on the corner. The new place is smaller and they are no longer open for dinner. They are open 8:00am to 4:00pm, Monday through Saturday. Giuseppi’s Espresso Café on Fremont has added Italian pasta dishes and new sandwiches to their menu and are now open until 8:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays for dinner. They are closed on Wednesdays.