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Mexican Law/Easiest Way to Transfer Mexican Property


My elderly father owns property in Jalisco, Mexico.  He was born in Mexico but lives in the U.S. as a U.S. citizen.  When he dies, he would like his Mexican property to go to his children who are U.S. citizens (all born in the U.S. but some have dual citizenship).  What do you advise he do now while he is alive?  
(1)   Add the names of his children to the property deeds now (deeds are currently in his name only)
(2)   Create a living trust in Mexico and list his children as beneficiaries upon his death
Once he dies, how do the children claim the property?  Which of the 2 choices above would be easier and less costly?  Can the children that are U.S. citizens own property in Mexico?
I am planning to take him to Mexico soon.  What documents shall I bring with me?  I have both a U.S. and Mexican passport.  Will I need birth certificates?  And if so certified birth certificates or will copies suffice?

Dear Christina,

I think the best thing to do is simply transfer the property to your siblings at this time.
If he wishes, he can reserve a life estate in the property. In this case, at his death, the life estate would cease to exist by operation of law and your brothers would be the owners without need for probate or any other formality.

Hope this helps...

Lic. John Lee Ward
Córdoba, Veracruz

Mexican Law

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John Lee Ward


I can respond to any question related to Mexican Law and common business practices in Mexico. I can also compare and contrast between the American and Mexican legal systems.


Licenciatura en Derecho from the Universidad del Golfo en Cordoba, Veracruz. (Cedula Profesional No. 5713238) Maestria en Derecho from the Universidad de Cristobal Colon en Veracruz, Veracruz. (Cedula Professional No. 6358321) Currently a Candidate for a Doctorado en Derecho from the Universidad de Cristobal Colon. 5 years of litigation experience in Mexico.

Bachelors in Electronic Engineering, California Polytechnic State Univ. Juris Doctor, Concord University in Los Angeles Licenciatura en Derecho, Universidad del Golfo, Mexico Maestria en Derecho, Universidad de Cristobal Colon, Mexico Doctorado en Derecho (In Progress), Universidad de Cristobal Colon, Mexico

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