We’re planning a home birth for this spring and needed to look into what’s required by the Guatemalan national people registration office of Guatemala (RENAP) in order to get an official Guatemalan Birth Certificate.
DPI original and copy of both parents (or just mother)
Medical report of birth (Informe médico de nacimiento) from your doctor or officially registered midwife.
If your midwife is not registered or no medical personnel was present present a legalized and signed report of the birth with signatures of the parents or mother. (Talk to a lawyer’s office or your local RENAP and they can explain how to do this.)
Boleto de Ornato (Get this at your local municipality office)
The U.S. Embassy in Guatemala City has significantly updated their Passport page to assist you so check it out!
US Embassy Web page
NOTE: Did you know that it’s faster to get a new passport through the embassy here in Guatemala instead of renewing in the States? It typically takes about eight days here in Guatemala and can take several weeks to a month or more in the states!
To get extra pages added to your passport…
Adding Extra pages has been eliminated. Get a new passport!
Here’s how to get a new passport added to your passport in the U.S. Embassy…
Visit the embassy page and download the Passport Renewal forms. Set up an embassy appointment. BE SURE TO PRINT YOUR APPOINTMENT CONFIRMATION. YOU WON’T BE ABLE TO DO THIS LATER. (Set your appointment early on so you don’t have to wait later.) Fill out the renewal form and get the photos you need. Print it and get ready for your appointment.
Enrolling in the Smart Travel Enrollment Program (S.T.E.P.)
There is an informative program called Smart Traveler from the U.S. State Department. We recommend that all teams register themselves so the U.S. Embassy will be aware of your presence in country in case of an emergency. You may choose to do this or not, but it is our recommendation that you do. We will keep you apprised of vital information that we receive if there are major change or concerns for your trip. As always, your team’s safety is always on our minds as we plan and prepare you’re your arrival. To enroll your team in the S.T.E.P. system online, follow the directions below:
Maycom manages the licensing of drivers in Guatemala.
Where can you get your drivers license in Guatemala? Here’s a list of Maycom offices where you can get your license. Remember that in some departments they Maycom only visits a couple times a year so you’ll have to check for local opportunities to get your license.
If you have ever sold a car in Guatemala, it’s important to make sure it is no longer legally in your name!
A fellow missionary, Marty, found out that a car he sold was still in his name. Read his story…
Last week I came face to face with this in an unexpected way. I purchased a used vehicle and in the process of the transfer (traspaso) of the title, I was told that one of my 3 vehicles was overdue for the calcomania payments for 2011 and 2012. But I only had 2 vehicles; or so I thought. I sold my 1992 Chevrolet Suburban. It turns out this buyer never completed the title transfer. When I found out he had not completed the transfer of the title, I de-activated the license plates. I could do this, since in the eyes of Guatemala law, I was still the owner. It cost me about Q1,000 for the 2 calcomanias for 2011 and 2012, a tramitador and several misc. expenses and almost two days of my time. ~ Marty
Marty said I could share his tips on how to make sure you really sell your car in the eyes of the government:
Here’s how to do it:
Go to any SAT office and simply ask for a “reposicion de tarjeta de NIT”. While there with the clerk, ask for a list of all vehicles in your name. If there is one still listed that you sold at any time in the past, and you have no idea where it is you should start the the process for “Inactivacion de placas”. You will want to apply for “Retiro definitive”, not “Retiro temporal” unless you know where the car is located and can convince the “owner” to complete the title transfer and pay back taxes and/or other unpaid expenses, if any. If you don’t deactivate the plates, you are legally responsible for any and all costs due to accidents, crimes, unpaid traffic violations, past due taxes (yearly calcomanias) and late tax payment fees related to a vehicle with a title still in your name.
Marty wanted to pass this along too…If anyone tries to sell this car to you or anyone you know, there may be problems in getting it licensed now that the license plates have been invalidated.
1992 Chevrolet Suburban 1500 S silver and dark blue
Serie (Serial number): 1GNFK16KXNJ325539
Poliza: 3292 ( Aduana in Santo Tomas de Castilla)
Have you ever showed up at the Embassy expecting to get that last bit of paperwork done? You stroll up ready to navigate the embassy lines and think you’re in luck because there’s no line at all! Then you realize that there’s no line because some obscure holiday has closed the embassy!
Hopefully this will help you avoid this because the U.S. Embassy’s schedule in Guatemala is simple…sort of:
The Guatemalan U.S. Embassy is open Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. and on Fridays from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Note: The American Citizen Services Unit will be closed to the public on the third Thursday of each month, except for emergencies. Please note also that the Embassy is closed for official U.S. AND Guatemalan holidays.
As new missionaries in this beautiful country, we moved to Guatemala while we were pregnant and started getting all the advice we could on what paperwork we needed for our baby. Here are some of the things we learned…
Step 1: Schedule a US Embassy appointment
If you’re anywhere within three months of the birth go to the US Embassy website and set up an appointment for a couple weeks after the due date. (UPDATE: As of(May 2014 the US embassy in Guatemala now only opens appointments about one month prior to the appointment date. So you’ll have to check in about a month ahead of the date you want.) These appointments fill up and it can be very difficult to get in if you don’t get something scheduled early. You can change it if you have to, but better to have the appointment scheduled than to find out you can’t get an appointment for two or three months after the baby is born when you may be wanting to travel.
TIP: I think you could probably have your spouse sign up so you have two dates to chose from. Then just cancel the appointment you don’t want! Continue reading →
WARNING: This may be the U.S. Embassy but validation takes time. Get there before 12 noon and you can probably get it at 2:30 that afternoon. Get there in the afternoon and you’ll have to go back the next day. Oh, and each validated copy will cost you US$50. They do accept credit cards if you don’t have the cash.
Criminal background check (This must be less than 6 months old when you turn it in and will require you to get things done in the U.S. so plan accordingly.)
NOTE: If your US passport is going to expire in the next year, I recommend that you get to Guatemala and immediately apply for a passport renewal BEFORE you start this process. (It only takes about 10 days to get your new passport from the embassy.) I had to go back through part of the process since my passport expired shortly after we got the permanent visa stamp. Keep your old passport to show the entry date to the immigration office.
Guatemalan Residency Visa Options
According to our lawyer and other sites there are three main long-term residency visa options (not including student, diplomatic, etc.) Since we just had our baby here in Guatemala, we opted for the Parents of Guatemalan child option. While others are available, I have listed three main options here: Continue reading →
U.S. citizens who live abroad need to get their paperwork right when they have babies abroad. Here’s how we got our Guatemalan birth certificate and passport after our son was born in Guatemala.
Before you go
Before go to get your baby’s papers, you need to get your papers together. We went all out because we knew we’d need to get our Residency Papers filed later so we had more than required. Here’s what we needed in 2011 when it came to getting our son’s birth certificate and Guatemalan passport.
Actual Passports of parents
For birth certificate: copy of both parents passport ID pages and covers
For Passport: copy of both parents passport ID pages and entry stamp page
Birth information page from your midwife or doctor
We also needed to pay several fees at BANRURAL, the national bank where you can pay for taxes and fees for your paperwork. Often there are BANRURAL locations near the paperwork offices, but you can go to any BANRURAL to pay for the following:
Boleto De Ornato (30Q)
Passport fee (231.60Q)
Here’s how the process worked for us…
We went to the San Cristobal RENAP (Registro Nacional de las Personas) office because it was nearby, but they said we could not file for our son’s birth certificate outside of the district he was born in unless we could show a utility bill from the San Cristobal district that has our name on it or by brining our landlord with us to prove that we live in San Cristobal. Since we couldn’t do any of these, we had to head into Guatemala City to the Central RENAP office to get the birth certificate. You should be able to go to the RENAP in the municipality or district where your child was born without any trouble. Continue reading →