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Mexico: Constitutional Right to Personal Identity

(Jul 11, 2014) On June 17, 2014, Mexico published an amendment to article 4 of the Constitution in the country’s official gazette. It stated:

Every person has the right to identity and be registered immediately at birth. The State will guarantee the fulfillment of these rights. The competent authority will issue, without charge, the first certified copy of the act of the birth registration. (Decreto por el que se adiciona el artículo 4 de la Constitución Política de los Estados Unidos Mexicanos, DIARIO OFICIAL DE LA FEDERACIÓN (June 17, 2014).)

The amending Decree in its transitional articles (artículos transitorios) instructs the states to establish in their respective fiscal codes that birth registrations and the acquisition of the first certified copy of the act of birth registration are exempted from payment of any fees. (Id.)

Similarly, the Decree mandates that the Federal Congress, in a period not to exceed six months from the June 18 entry into force of this Decree and after consulting with the States and the appropriate authorities on matters of national population registration, must determine the features, design, and content of the single format for population registration. In addition, the issuance of all vital records of the civil registry must be implemented through electronic mechanisms, which must be adopted by all the states and the Mexican foreign service offices. (Id.)

The Secretariat of Interior (Gobernación), through the National Population Register (Registro Nacional de Población), must send to the National Electoral Institute information on death certificates from the local population registry authorities. (Id.)