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Apostilling your documents for Mexico. .
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dduck



Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 422
Location: In the middle

PostPosted: Thu May 22, 2003 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Pete,

Sorry to hear your English. Can't be helped I suppose! Cool I'm Scots...

Might be an idea to get your birth certificate done as well.

Step one.

Go to solicitor get your documents notorised.

Step two.

Send your documents to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London.

Try http://www.fco.gov.uk/servlet/Front?pagename=OpenMarket/Xcelerate/ShowPage&c=Page&cid=1007029391440

Best o' luck
Iain
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steves619



Joined: 19 May 2003
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2003 9:45 pm    Post subject: CELTA? Reply with quote

Are there any non-brits out there who have gone through the process of
getting a CELTA certificate apostilled? My understanding is that, for the U.S. anyway, you get the apostille from the office of the secretary of state where the documents were issued - so, for my birth certificate and uni degree, this would be California since I was born there and graudated from a California public university. The CELTA is issued by the University of Cambridge in the UK however, so can I as a non-citizen submit documents to the office given in the previous post for authentication?

Another question - when you get a document apostilled, do they send back the original or copies stamped with the "apostille"? Can you submit apostilled copies to the Mexican immigration authorities for an FM3?

Thanks

-Steve
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Ben Round de Bloc



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1946

PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2003 12:59 pm    Post subject: CELTA apostille Reply with quote

Steve,

Granted, it's been a while since I've had an FM3 (now have FM2,) but I'm not sure why you'd need your CELTA apostilled. I think your university degree is what immigration wants to see. Why would you need to apostille you CELTA certificate?

Best wishes!
Smile
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steves619



Joined: 19 May 2003
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2003 5:10 am    Post subject: CELTA apostille Reply with quote

Ben,

I have no idea why I'd need to get the CELTA apostilled, other than that others have mentioned needing to get their TEFL certificates apostilled in this thread. Does the CELTA's apparent wider international recognition and prestige give it a special status for FM3 purposes that other less known TEFL certificates don't enjoy? As far as I can tell, the process of getting an FM3 seems to be pretty arbitrary anyways, depending on the whims and mood of whomever happens to be working the day your FM3 application is received, so it probably can't hurt.

Thanks -sjs
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LM



Joined: 17 Jan 2003
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2003 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It all depends on what your qualifications are. If you don't have a degree in the field of education or language, you would have to get your CELTA or other TESL certificate apostilled.

Bottom line, the immigration official needs to know that you are somewhat qualified for the position and they need an apostille of that certification/diploma/document.
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Ben Round de Bloc



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1946

PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2003 6:48 pm    Post subject: Just curious Reply with quote

Quote:
Bottom line, the immigration official needs to know that you are somewhat qualified for the position and they need an apostille of that certification/diploma/document.
- LM


LM. I'm not disagreeing with your logic. It sounds reasonable to me. I'm just curious.

Has anyone ever heard of a situation where a language school was willing to legally hire a foreigner to teach EFL -- the person having a university degree not related to education or languages -- and immigration turned down the work visa application, because the person didn't have any kind of EFL teacher training certificate?

Since I began teaching at the university, there have been at least 3 foreign exchange teachers issued work visas to teach EFL who had university degrees in nothing to do with EFL, languages, or education and no EFL certificates of any kind. Also, I know of a number of people with similar qualifications (or lack thereof) teaching EFL legally at local language schools.

I fully realize that requirements vary from immigration office to immigration office. I think our local immigration office asks for either a university degree in something/anything or an EFL teacher training certificate but not both. However, it's been several years since I applied for an FM3, and things may have changed since then.

Do most immigration offices require an EFL teacher training certificate if the applicant doesn't have a university degree in EFL, education, or languages?

Best wishes!
Smile
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MELEE



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2583
Location: The Mexican Hinterland

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2003 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LM wrote:
Bottom line, the immigration official needs to know that you are somewhat qualified for the position and they need an apostille of that certification/diploma/document.



I think the real bottom line is that the immigration official needs to know that you are not handing over some certificate/diploma/document that your little brother made for you on his computer.

On the topic in general, if looking for work in a public or semi-public university, a TEFL or CELTA cert. Because you run into laws stating that you have to have complete the level of education in which you are teaching.

If you are in the US and you need to get documents Apostilled (or is it Apostillized?) there are two ways of going about it. One is sending the it to the Secretary of State of the State where the issuing institution is. (Make sure you ask for the apostille to be on a copy and not the original or immigration might want to keep the original. The other way, which is easier if you've moved across the country is to have a local notary public make a notarized copy. Then send or take that copy to the Secretary of State of the state where the notary works. The Secretary of State will authenticate that this is the seal of a true registered notary public. You can see http://www.filinginoregon.com/notary/authentication.htm (page down) . T

his is how the majority of our America teachers get their Apostilles. Brits have to send documents to The Home Office (I love that name!) and in Australia it's the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

I hope this helps

MEL
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dduck



Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 422
Location: In the middle

PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2003 6:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LM wrote:
It's not your employer that is requiring the apostille, it is migracion (Mexican immigration) that requires it. Schools would love to be able to hire who they want without going through the hassle of the work visa.


Never, a truer word spoken...

I hate to bring this up, but...

I was having a conversation with my boss about how long I'm going to stay with the school and I brought up the subject of a work permit. The long and short of it is: the school thinks I need to sort out my own work permit. They'll give me a letter outlining the job offer. Besides that it's my problem...

As I mentioned before my school has never been though the process of getting a work permit for a foreigner. This isn't, at all, what I was expecting... and you should have seen my face when the school owner explained this to me. It was a picture Shocked

Is this normal, reasonable, or even possible?

Iain
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some waygug-in



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Posts: 339

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2003 2:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it is quite common. legal no, but like many other things in Mexico, legality is in the eye of the beholder.

If they expect you to arrange it by yourself, be prepared. It's not an easy thing to do without help. (at least the first time) It's expensive too!
That's probably why they won't help you with it. There's the cost of the visa itself + the cost of approved photos + the cost of official translation of your diploma or teaching cert. + the cost of registering with the tax office = A whole lotta pesos!

It's probably easier for you just to stay working illegally and then take a weekend trip across the border when the time comes.

There are lot's out there who will probably disagree, but from what you've described of your employment situation, I don't think you should pay 1 peso or lose 1 minute of sleep over getting legalized. It just ain't worth it.

Even if someone decides that they don't like you and wants to report you to immigration, the most likely thing that would happen is that you get a fine and the school gets a fine (probably 500 pesos) .

The best thing to do is keep it between you and your employer and just don't tell anyone else. It happens all the time in Mexico, so don't feel bad about it.

Anyway, that's just my opinion.
I hope you enjoy your time in Queretaro and if you venture down Pino Suarez in the centro historico, you can check out cafe del fondo. Not bad food, great coffee at reasonable prices.
Cheers
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lozwich



Joined: 25 May 2003
Posts: 1536

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2003 2:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm... Given that the previous post sums up a lot of what I've also heard elsewhere, is it worth going to all the hassle of getting everything apostillometricised before I leave my home shores??

Hands up who's working illegally?? Wink

Lozwich
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Ben Round de Bloc



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1946

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2003 11:08 am    Post subject: . Reply with quote

lozwich, I think I'd get everything "apostillometricised" -- I like your word Very Happy -- in advance, simply because you could end up being offered a decent job where the employer insisted on employing you legally. I don't know what the apostilling process is like in the Land of Oz, however. If it's a really long, complicated, costly thing to do, then maybe it wouldn't be worth the hassle after all.

Regarding employers doing their part in the FM3 process, if they've never legally employed a foreigner before, most of them haven't a clue as to how it's done. I don't think it's all that unusual for such employers to say something like, "Here's a letter stating that I'll employ you. Go get your work visa." The real picture is that the employer has to provide a letter stating a description of the job, how much he's willing to pay you, and how long he plans to employ you. He also has to include a written request asking immigration to give you a work visa and attach a photocopy of his voter registration card, and he has to provide a copy of his tax records. Granted, these things may vary from immigration office to immigration office, but basically that's the story.

I agree that it does seem a bit absurd, especially for someone planning to teach for only a year or less, to go through the hassle and expense of getting a work visa, considering how little most EFL teachers earn. Yet, I also understand that there are people who would be prone to worrying a lot about working illegally; nightmares about immigration officials hauling them off to a Mexican prison or something like that. For some people, just the peace of mind of being legal might be worth getting an FM3.

dduck, please don't take this as criticism in any way, but when I read your posts, I can't help but think, What has this guy gotten himself into? The incredibly low pay even for Mexico, expecting you to travel (buy a car,) and now a boss who's clueless about work visas! I certainly hope you have a Plan B tucked away somewhere. There are so many wonderful experiences to be had in this country. I'd really hate to see you get turned off to the whole adventure by being badly burned by your first job.
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dduck



Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 422
Location: In the middle

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2003 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

some waygug-in wrote:
I hope you enjoy your time in Queretaro and if you venture down Pino Suarez in the centro historico, you can check out cafe del fondo. Not bad food, great coffee at reasonable prices.
Cheers


Funny you should say that, but it was the first place I found. I initially stayed in the posada a few doors down from Cafe del Fondo. I'm more or less a regular there now. Cool

Thanks you all for the information, special thanks go to Ben. I think the school would be very surprised by the amount of information they have to supply just to get a working permit for my extremely poorly paid job. I'm not going to stress myself about it anymore. Most likely, I'll work up until my tourist visa expires in August, then take a weekend stopover and start looking for something better.

At the moment, I'm enjoying teaching the students, which is why I'm in this job. Gradually, I'll get used to working in Mexico and the school will learn about what it means to employ a gringo. Things are slowly coming together.

Iain
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M@tt



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 473
Location: here and there

PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 3:48 pm    Post subject: Somebody shoot me Reply with quote

I am preparing for my first job in Mexico starting in approximately 5 weeks, and am still confused about the apostille process. Here's what the academic director told me:
The documents, only a copy of each one, that you need to bring with you are:
1. Birth Certificate
2. Academic degrees (Bachelor, Master, Ph. D., etc)
3. Passport
That's all.
Your FM3 (special visa for working) will be obtained here.

Here's what I asked him next:
I understand I need to get an apostille on my master's degree. About the other documents, do I also need an apostille, or will it be enough if I get them notarized?

And here's what he told me:
If you have your master's degree and bachelor's degree, we only need a simple photocopy (e.g. in a Xerox machine). You do not need to notarize it.

Any thoughts? Isn't it absolutely necessary to apostille your 'highest' degree (an MA in my case)? What about the other docs: simple photocopy, photocopy notarized, or photocopy notarized and apostillized?


About driving into Mexico with a carload of stuff, I read up on the websites people have mentioned and it seems ridiculous. For one thing, one website says that if you are entering with an FM-3, you are allowed to bring in LESS than if you are entering with a tourist visa. Either way, it's not much and I'm wondering how in the world to get my stuff down there!? When I mentioned this to a friend in the States, he told me he drives into Mexico every other year and has never even been inspected at the border.
Confusion...
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Ben Round de Bloc



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1946

PostPosted: Mon Jun 23, 2003 6:34 pm    Post subject: Prepare yourself for the land of multiple truths Reply with quote

I sense a bit of a communication breakdown. It sounds to me like one or more of the following things happened in your conversation with your director. A) He didn't really know, so he guessed at what the answer should be. B) He didn't really know, but he didn't want to offend you (or appear stupid) by not giving some type of answer, so he made one up. C) He and you were talking about two different things; he was talking about his school's requirements, and you were talking about immigration requirements.

I've filled in below what you may have missed in the conversation, based on my experiences of communicating with people in this country, especially if your director's first language is Spanish no matter how fluent he seems in English. If his first language is English, then he might have been living here long to have adjusted to a more local style of communication.

Quote:
Here's what I asked him next:
I understand I need to get an apostille on my master's degree. About the other documents, do I also need an apostille, or will it be enough if I get them notarized?

And here's what he told me:
If you have your master's degree apostilled and bachelor's degree, we at the school only need a simple photocopy (e.g. in a Xerox machine) of your apostilled masters degree. You do not need to notarize it, because that's legal process which is usually complicated and expensive.


Keep in mind that notarizing something in Mexico isn't the same as notarizing it in the USA. In Mexico, a notário público is a special lawyer, or probably more correctly, former lawyer, who notarizes legal documents. It is not some company secretary who has her notary public's seal that she can put on official documents.

By the way, if you plan on spending any time at all in Mexico, you'll have to get used to the types of answers and conversations you've had with your director. As MELEE so aptly suggested in another post, this is the land of multiple truths.

Quote:
It is important for visitors to remember the following steps when crossing the border between the United States and Mexico by automobile. There are no procedures to comply with if you are traveling within the Border Zone or Free Trade Zone (including the Baja California Peninsula and the Sonora Free Trade Zone). If you wish to travel past these zones, you will need to adhere to certain procedures.

http://travel.state.gov/tips_mexico.html


Go to the site listed above and scroll down to "Travel by Car" to see just how complicated the process can be. Things may have changed somewhat since the information on the above website was posted. I'm not sure about that.

I hope this is helpful rather than adding more confusion.
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dduck



Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 422
Location: In the middle

PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 3:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Somebody shoot me Reply with quote

M@tt wrote:
And here's what he told me:
If you have your master's degree and bachelor's degree, we only need a simple photocopy (e.g. in a Xerox machine). You do not need to notarize it.

Any thoughts? Isn't it absolutely necessary to apostille your 'highest' degree (an MA in my case)? What about the other docs: simple photocopy, photocopy notarized, or photocopy notarized and apostillized?


It would seem to me that to receive your FM3 you only need to provide evidence that you're qualified. I only have a bachelor's, and that sufficient. Should be for you too.

Additionally, after you've spoken to enough students you'll realise that it's natural to bluff your way through questions when you don't understand. The trick is to phrase the questions as concept questions, inside and outside of the class. Cool

When I was travelling in Guatemala a group of us asked when the bus leaves for Todos Santos. We asked several people, received several answers - most of which were made up on the spot and completely bogus Confused We go there eventually.

Iain
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