Jim in Cancun
May 28, 2003, 5:12 AM
Post #2 of 8
Re: [carib] Need permit(s) and procedure info for my lot
Can't Post | Private Reply
CARIB says: Hello, I've read just about every article available on this site, the government sites and been to most of the gov. offices in the state of Quintana Roo, in the capital city of Chetumal. I'm most interested in permits, visas and import taxes.
Jim says: Do you speak Spanish? Have you been there with your lawyer and/or accountant who know what questions to ask and how to ask them? And in case you missed some sites, also check out
http://rollybrook.com/...ve_to_mexico.htm#Car and http://mexconnected.com/...movingcountdown.html and http://www.mexconnected.com/mex_/driveborder.html
CARIB says: Some of the info. just doesn't jive;
Jim says: Welcome to Mexico!
CARIB says: I do realize this can be the difference between the written law and how it is enforced. For example, I doubt that travelers from the Tampa, Fl ferry exiting into Cancun (200 vehicles) would be taxed for "importing" all the expensive goodies that there motorhomes contain or be held up in customs for days, or actually need to use an import broker since it's a temporary visit.
Jim says: They arenīt importing--they are bringing things in tempoarily. And if the things included are not permitted then they will be taxed or the merchandise confiscated--or at the very least they will be harrassed to the point of thinking that maybe a "tip" is in order here! Check out http://www.mexconnected.com/mex_/whatstuff.html
CARIB says: Does anyone know if you're allowed to tow 2 trailers in tandem with a pickup?
Jim says: I donīt know for sure but it probably depends on a number of "ifs"--like your status, purpose of the merchandise and trailers,etc. Maybe someone else can address this one.
CARIB says:I already have a corporation set up and was told that no import fees would apply to items brought in for the business. Is this true?
Jim says: What kind of corporation? Who told you that? Your customs agent? Notario? Lawyer? It also depends on the type of business, the type of merchandise and NAFTA.
CARIB says:What about Cokes and Mountain Dew?
Jim says: If they think they are for sale then they will probably tax or take them for break time--depends on the quantity and your luck.
CARIB says:My lot is near the new cruise ship port and here's what I want to do:
Jim says: Which new cruise ship port? Majahual? Playa? Cozumel?
CARIB says:Load my pickup and a camping and/or covered work trailer with commercial coolers, an ice machine, sink, blender, coffee machine, generator, a portable building etc. and all the used tools necessary to clear an area of my beach lot in order to build a snack bar and later build some cabanas. I'll use the tools and work trailer for 1-2 mos., then haul it back to Fl. Q: Any taxes since the tools are "just visiting" and being used for a business?
Jim says: WOW! Multiple part question.
1.- Check with your customs agent, accountant, notario and lawyer BUT my guess is that you will not be permitted to just cross the border with all of that commercial stuff. And make sure you have all original invoices, serial numbers,etc. because you will have to have a detailied inventory made of what you are bringing in with its corresponding value. Here is a sample of a menaje de casa in English--it must, of course be done in Spanish.
If you do not speak fluent Spanish and know how things are done in Mexico then you need an accountant, a notario, a lawyer and a customs agent--donīt depend on free advice on the net--it will cost you big time.
2.- The words "clear" and "build" bring to mind shades of many laws, rules, regulations, environmental impact studies, local, State and Federal burocracy. Check with professionals--you have a long row to hoe.
3.- As far as the "visiting" tools, you are importing them for business purposes.
CARIB says:I plan on being in the area for 180 days or less, so I should be able to get by on the tourist visa. People are saying to get an FM3 and a work permit. I don't see how either pertain to me since I fit within the visiting guidlines and I'm the biz owner, working for myself and not being paid by the corp. as an employee. If my father and friends come with me to help and they're not getting paid, I wouldn't see that the corp. would need to obtain work permits for them either, since no job is being taken from a resident. (Unless they want to work for free!)
Jim says: What you just said shows that you have a lot more research to do and a lot to learn about life and business in Mexico. You said you already had a corporation set up. I assumed this was a Mexican corporation. Am I correct in that assumption? If you have a Mexican company set up you can get an FM-3 but what work you can do is limited.
And if you have a Mexican business, you are not "visiting"--you are doing business here and need to pay taxes and follow the laws of the land. In general--while this may be normal--it seems that you are trying to "skirt" the laws and spend the least amount of money to set up a business on the beach in a foreign. If it were that easy I would have done it 16 years ago when I first got here. It isnīt. It is a slow, frustrating, expensive process and you need deep pockets and lots of patience to make it work.
CARIB says:Q: Clearing the land. My lot is commercial and on a private access road. According to the law, commercial lots have more buildable area and thus, could be cleared more. The law states that chemicals, hydraulic plants, etc. will require an environmental impact report ($2,500). It also states that if you believe any change will occur to the environment as a result of your actions, then you should have the report done also. Technically, any person walking on the soil will cause a change to be noted to the plants and animals, but it's a far cry from trimming the trees to a chemical factory!
1.- Not to put you and your project in the same class as huge Spanish hotel chains, but Sol Meliá and Ríu--just to mention a few--have had some serious problems building on the beaches of Quintana Roo. Envionmental impact studies, local state and federal permits have stopped several big projects entirely and psotponed others indefinitely--and this for companies that have "paid" millions of dollars for their "permits."
2.- And as for the land, did you purchase it as a Mexican corporation? Is it in a trust? Is it titled?
CARIB says:Q: Can't any unprotected trees/plants be trimmed at my discretion? Also, does anyone know the latest RE: burning brush? Has it been made illegal or can it be done on the far side of the road still? Two lots down, some local workers just burned down the entire front of the lot, burning the rocks, coral and neighboring bushes.
Jim says: "Trimmed" yes--cut down, no. Burning is both common and illegal here and you will find that foreigners get away with much less than local Mexicans. There have been some serious brush/forest fires this year both in Q.Roo and Yucatan so everyone is watching.
CARIB says:I've been told by the locals that a permit will be necessary to move my private access road on the other side of a row of trees (about 10'). This seems ridiculous. No trees need to be cut down, just trimmed. Has anyone had any experience with this? The official in Chetumal told me they needed the exact coordinants of my lot and photos, to determine which ecological zone my lot was in. Then they would determine if a permit and an eco study was necessary. The local Mayans and the cruise ship workers seem to be able to tear down whatever they want, whenever they want.
Jim says: See above ("foreigners get away with much less than local Mexicans") and you will have to give them all of the coordinates, papers, copies of papers, copies of your company papers, copies of your immigration papers, copies of your RFC, copies of your proof of residency, etc. before they will do anything. And you will run into thousands of things that will "seem ridiculous" to you and you will have to do them or make no progress at all.
CARIB says:I know I need to obtain a concession permit to use the fed. zone beach in front of my lot. Am I allowed to put a temp. canopy on it with no permit? Q: Do I need a building permit for a cement block bar on my lot and the portable storage building. I think it applies to houses and restaurants only?
Jim says: Yes, you need a Federal concession to use the beach since it is considered federal property. Building permits refer to "building"--anything. You need the concession before you can do anything on the beach and the permit before you can do anything on the land.
Jim says: I have lived here for 16 years and have seen people come and go thinking that coming here from "Peoria" is like moving around the corner--or to another state. Well, it isnīt. Itīs another country, climate, money, food, laws, customs, friends, language,etc. ad infinitum. Imagine how a local illiterate Mayan farmer or an educated Mexican lawyer who doesnīt speak English might feel upon arriving in New York or Chicago or--worse yet--the middle of Iowa--and finding out that the American dream that he way chasing isnīt exactly as easy to grab as he thought!!
I am not trying to be negative--just realistic. Remember: "A dream only costs one thing: EVERYTHING!"
HOPE THIS HELPS.