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International parental child abduction is the removal or retention of a child outside their country of habitual residence in breach of another parent or guardian’s custody rights.
The Department of State is committed to ensuring fair and humane treatment for U.S. citizens imprisoned overseas. We stand ready to assist incarcerated citizens and their families within the limits of our authority in accordance with international law, domestic and foreign law.
When an U.S. citizen dies abroad, the Bureau of Consular Affairs assists the family and friends. The Bureau of Consular Affairs attempts to locate and inform the next-of-kin of the U.S. citizen’s death. The Bureau of Consular Affairs provides information on how to make arrangements for local burial or return of the remains to the United States. The disposition of remains is subject to U.S. and local (foreign) law, U.S. and foreign customs requirements, and the foreign country facilities, which are often vastly different from those in the United States.
When a U.S. citizen is the victim of a crime overseas, he or she may suffer from physical, emotional or financial injuries. It can be more difficult because the victim may be in unfamiliar surroundings, and may not know the local language or customs.
Information on transferring funds, what receivers need, and destitution.
The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the entities or individuals whose names appear on the following lists. Inclusion on this list is in no way an endorsement by the Department or the U.S. government. Names are listed alphabetically, and the order in which they appear has no other significance. The information on the list is provided directly by the local service providers.Legal Resources Medical Resources Funeral Homes
The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Mexico maintain local lists of attorneys.
The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Mexico maintain local lists of doctors, hospitals, and other medical resources.
The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Mexico maintain local lists of funeral home services.
Consular Affairs (CA) is the public face of the Department of State for millions of people around the world. We provide many services, and the most common are listed below.
If you reside in Mexico and have questions regarding services provided by the Social Security Administration (SSA), you must contact the SSA Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) located in Mexico. For comprehensive information on SSA’s services abroad, please visit SSA’s webpage Service Around the World. If you are already receiving SSA benefits payments, there will be no change in the method of distribution of those payments. For comprehensive information on SSA’s services abroad, please visit SSA’s webpage Service Around the World. If you are already receiving SSA benefits payments, there will be no change in the method of distribution of those payments.
Service members, Veterans, and their beneficiaries can apply for benefits services on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) website at www.va.gov. The Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) can also be of assistance if Veterans and beneficiaries have questions about benefits and services.
If you are a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident (green card holder), you are responsible for filing U.S. federal income tax returns while abroad. You will find useful information on the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website, such as Frequently Asked Questions about taxes or how to apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). If you are a U.S. government employee working overseas, you cannot claim the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion. For additional information, visit the IRS website.
U.S. embassies and consulates overseas assist the Selective Service System with its registration program abroad.
Now all U.S. citizens can receive their blank ballots electronically. Depending on the state in which you are eligible to vote, you may get your ballot by email, fax, or internet download. To start, go to www.FVAP.gov to complete a new Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), print and sign the form then return it to your local election office in the United States. We recommend overseas U.S. citizens get in the habit of completing FPCAs each January. You should include your email address on the form so it’s easier for your election officials to reach you if there is a problem. If your state delivers ballots electronically by fax only, be sure to include your fax number. If you request electronic delivery and include your email address or fax number, you’ll receive your blank ballot 45 days before general and mid-term elections and generally 30 days before special, primary, and run-off elections for federal offices.
The Vehicle Recovery Unit of the U.S. Consulate General in Tijuana assists U.S. citizens recover their vehicles stolen in the United States and recovered in Mexico. The Vehicle Recovery Unit serves as a liaison between the Mexican authorities and U.S. citizens and/or their insurance carriers.
A consular officer at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate must determine that the adoptive child qualifies for a visa before you adopt or obtain legal custody of the child. Do not adopt or obtain custody of the child until the consular officer issues an Article 5 Letter.
A child born outside the United States to a U.S. citizen parent or parents may be eligible for U.S. citizenship if the parent(s) meets the requirements for transmitting U.S. citizenship under the Immigration and Nationality Act. U.S. citizens eligible to transmit citizenship are required to file for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA).
Although surrogacy agencies/clinics claim surrogacy is legal in Mexico and actively promote Mexico as a destination for international commercial surrogacy, there is no legal framework for foreigners or same-sex couples to pursue surrogacy in Mexico. As a result, surrogacy agreements between foreign or same-sex intending parents and gestational mothers are not enforced by Mexican courts.
U.S. embassy and consulate personnel cannot perform marriages in foreign countries. Depending on the law of the foreign country, local civil or religious officials generally perform marriages. Marriages performed overseas are considered valid in the country where they take place if they are entered into in accordance with local law. Recognition of the validity of marriages performed abroad depends on the laws of the place in which the marriage is to be recognized.
Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative
The Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) requires U.S. and Canadian travelers to present a passport or other document that denotes identity and citizenship when entering the U.S. It is a result of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA). The goal of WHTI is to facilitate entry for U.S. citizens and legitimate foreign visitors, while strengthening U.S. border security. Standard documents will enable the Department of Homeland Security to quickly and reliably identify a traveler. WHTI went into effect June 1, 2009 for land and sea travel into the U.S. WHTI document requirements for air travel went into effect in 2007. For current travel document requirements, visit the Customs and Border Protection website. To stay further informed, you can read U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory and Alerts.
Information on renunciation of U.S. citizenship abroad.