flag Mexico Mexico: Tax System

In this page: Corporate Taxes | Accounting Rules | Consumption Taxes | Individual Taxes | Double Taxation Treaties | Sources of Fiscal Information


Corporate Taxes

Tax Base For Resident and Foreign Companies
According to the Mexican Federal Tax Code, companies are considered Mexican residents if their principal centre of administration or the effective place of management is located in Mexico.

Tax Rate

Corporate tax 30%
Agriculture, livestock, fishing, and forestry activities 30% reduction of their tax liability
Tax Rate For Foreign Companies
Mexican resident taxpayers’ are subject to corporate income tax from worldwide sources, whereas foreign residents are taxed on the income attributed to their permanent establishments in Mexico.
Foreign enterprises established in Mexico are subject to the same tax system as national enterprises, though they do benefit from certain exemptions. Although various states have started to offer competing tax incentives to attract foreign investors, the majority of taxes in Mexico are levied at the federal level.

A 10% WHT on profit distributions applies on branches, which can be reduced or eliminated based on any applicable tax treaty provision.

Capital Gains Taxation

Mexican entities are not subject to special tax treatment on capital gains; however, the use of capital losses is restricted in certain cases.
Gains on securities are included in regular taxable income.
When stocks issued by Mexican companies, securities that exclusively represent these shares, stocks issued by foreign companies listed on the Mexican stock market, and derivative financial operations based on stock indexes or the aforementioned shares are sold in recognized stock or derivative markets according to the Securities Market Law, the resulting capital gains will be subject to a 10% income tax rate.

When determining the taxable gain on real estate, the cost basis of land and buildings can be adjusted for tax purposes based on how long the assets have been held. This adjustment uses inflation factors applied to the net undepreciated balance. Non-residents who choose to pay tax on net income by appointing a legal representative in Mexico follow similar rules. The tax rate on the net gain is 35% or a lower treaty rate if applicable. Otherwise, a 25% final withholding tax on gross income applies to non-residents.

Main Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
The applicable deduction requirements must be fulfilled by the last day of the tax year to which the deduction applies. However, the invoice supporting the expense may be provided up to the date when the tax return for the relevant period is filed or becomes due. It's essential for an expense invoice to bear a date within the year for which the deduction is being claimed.
In general, all federal, state, and local (including the municipal tax on real estate) taxes levied on a company (not including taxes on acquisitions of fixed assets and real estate and CIT) are tax-deductible expenses.

Start-up expenditure incurred prior to the commencement of business may be amortised at the yearly rate of 10%, after applying the adjustment factors. The deduction of charitable contributions is limited to 7% of the taxable income of the previous year.
Typically, interest expenses are eligible for deduction under certain conditions. These conditions encompass investing the principal in the primary activity of the Mexican taxpayer, fulfilling withholding obligations, submitting informative returns detailing the loan and transactions with related parties, adhering to thin capitalization rules (requiring a 3:1 debt-to-equity ratio), ensuring the transaction's arm's length nature, and confirming the interest payment does not resemble a deemed dividend. Additionally, there's a constraint on net interest (taxable accrued interest minus deductible interest) surpassing 30% of an adjusted taxable profit. Notably, this restriction applies solely to taxpayers whose deductible accrued interest exceeds MXN 20 million, determined on either a Mexican group or related party basis.

R&D expenditure (including investment in R&D) gives rise to a 30% tax credit. The tax credit is equal to current-year R&D expenses in excess of the average R&D expenses incurred in the previous three years.

For payments related to technical assistance, the transfer of technology, or royalties to be considered deductible, they must be made directly to companies that possess the necessary technical expertise to provide the relevant service. If payments are made to foreign affiliates, they will only be considered deductible if they adhere to the arm's-length principle.
Typically, losses can be carried forward for up to 10 years, except for deep-water operations linked to oil extraction activities, where the period extends to 15 years, all subject to relevant inflation adjustments. However, carrying losses back is not allowed.

Non-deductible items include penalties, unauthorised donations, contingencies, indemnities, goodwill, exempt salaries, etc.

Other Corporate Taxes
After their first year of operations, companies may be subject to employee profit-sharing tax (10%), as well as special excise taxes on production and services (tax losses cannot be applied against the profit-sharing base, and no later than May of the year following the year in which the profits were generated).
The transfer of real estate is subject to a tax at rates ranging from 2% to 5% on the highest of the value of the transaction, fair market value, or registered municipality value (some exceptions apply). Real property taxes are levied by the states at different rates.

Companies engaged in oil exploration and production are subject to a special tax regime as set out in the Hydrocarbons Revenue Law.

Social security contributions are based on the daily salary plus any other compensation paid to the employee, with rates varying according to the base salary of their Mexican employees and the type of concepts for which the compensation is given to the employee (ranging from 15% to 25%). For a low-risk company, the employer's maximum annual contribution is MXN 188,657. However, this limit may be higher depending on the employer's occupational risk premium, which is determined by the employer's activity. These maximum contributions apply only to employees who earn more than MXN 989,672 per year (or MXN 78,400 per month).

The acquisition of new vehicles is subject to taxation, while the different states may impose a tax on the ownership of vehicles. Mexico does not levy stamp duties.

Other Domestic Resources
Mexican Federal Tax Administration (SAT)

Country Comparison For Corporate Taxation

  Mexico Latin America & Caribbean United States Germany
Number of Payments of Taxes per Year 6.0 28.2 10.6 9.0
Time Taken For Administrative Formalities (Hours) 240.5 327.5 175.0 218.0
Total Share of Taxes (% of Profit) 55.1 46.8 36.6 48.8

Source: The World Bank - Doing Business, Latest data available.

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Accounting Rules


Accounting System

Accounting Standards
Accounting standards are set by regulatory bodies, such as the Mexican Council for Research and Development of Financial Information Standards. Mexican companies are required to prepare their financial statements in Spanish and according to Mexican Financial Information Standards (NIF, formerly known as Generally Accepted Accounting Principles or PCGA). Accounting registries and books of account must be recorded in Spanish.
Accounting Regulation Bodies
Mexican Council for Research and Development of Financial Information Standards
Accounting Law
The General Law for Commercial Enterprises of 1934, Regulatory Law of Banking and Public Credit Service, Law on Systems for Retirement savings and the Tax Federation Code of 1987
Difference Between National and International Standards (IAS/IFRS)
The National Banking and Securities Commission of Mexico (Comisión Nacional Bancaria y de Valores (CNBV)) fully adopted IFRS Standards for financial reporting in 2012. The Mexican Financial Reporting Standards Board (CINIF) has also been eliminating differences between IFRS and Mexican Financial Reporting Standards (MFRS), which is one of the frameworks that can still be used by SMEs.

Accounting Practices

Tax Year
The fiscal year begins on 1 January and ends on 31 December of the same year.
Accounting Reports
There are two essential structures:

- The balance sheet, which reflects the financial situation of the enterprise and provides information about the assets, liabilities and capital on a particular date (the last day of the fiscal year).

- The profit and losses report, reflects the income, expenses, loss and profit obtained during that particular period (typically each trimester or fiscal year).

Publication Requirements
The balance sheet, the profit and loss account statements and the daily ledger are mandatory components. All accounts are published annually.
Corporations with gross income exceeding MXN 100 million, assets exceeding MXN 79 million or with at least 300 employees (in every month during the tax year) may file with the tax authorities a special report (dictamen fiscal) prepared by an independent public accountant. If the report is filed, the tax authorities will not audit on general principles, but instead review to verify that the audit was properly carried out.

Accountancy Profession

The diploma of public accountant is required to practice the profession in the country. You can access the website of the Instituto Mexicano de Contadores Publicos, A.C.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
Mexican Institute of Public Accountants
Member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC)

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Consumption Taxes

Nature of the Tax
VAT, called 'Impuesto al Valor Agregado' or 'IVA'.
Standard Rate
Reduced Tax Rate
The supply of goods and services, as well as the use or enjoyment of goods in locals or establishments located in the cross-border zone (North and South), are subject to a reduced rate of 8%.
The 0% VAT rate is applicable to a substantial number of transactions, including the exportation of goods and certain services, unprocessed food and milk; patented medicines; feminine hygiene products; etc.
Exclusion From Taxation
Exempt supplies and services include books, newspapers and magazines; constructions used for residential purposes; transfer of copyright by authors; education; public transport of passengers by land; transport of goods by sea for non-residents; local and foreign currency and credit instruments (including shares).
Method of Calculation, Declaration and Settlement
VAT is imposed on the sale of goods, leasing, and service provision, as well as on imports. The scope of "services" encompasses digital services rendered by nonresidents to recipients situated in Mexico. Digital services are broadly defined to encompass various online applications, including video, image, or audio streaming; ring tones; news services covering topics like traffic, weather, and statistical analysis; intermediary services provision; online clubs and dating platforms; and educational, testing, and exercise websites. Nonresident entities lacking a Permanent Establishment (PE) that offer digital services in Mexico are obligated to fulfill several regulatory requirements.
All persons must register to claim VAT credits on purchases from vendors, suppliers, or at the border. Nonresident suppliers of goods or services in Mexico are also required to register. VAT returns must be submitted monthly, with a deadline of the first 17 days of the following month. VAT paid on expenses and investments incurred during a business's preoperational phase can be credited in two ways: (i) on the VAT return for the month the business commences operations, or (ii) claimed for refund in the following month based on an estimate of future VAT-liable activities.
Other Consumption Taxes
The Excise Tax Law (Impuesto Especial Sobre Producción y Servicios or IEPS) imposes significant federal excise rates on the importation and/or sale of specific taxable items, including gasoline (variable percentage), beer (26.5%), wine (26.5% to 53%), spirits (53%), and cigarettes and other tobacco products (160% plus an additional quota). Additionally, excise tax applies to certain services related to these activities, such as commission, mediation, and distribution of excise taxable items, as well as services for raffles and gambling (30%). Furthermore, certain telecommunications services are subject to a 3% excise tax. Soft drinks are subject to an excise tax of 1 Mexican peso (MXN) per litre, while 'junk' food incurs an 8% rate. In both cases, the excise tax is payable by the producer or importer.
The acquisition of new vehicles is subject to taxation, while the different states may impose a tax on the ownership of vehicles.

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Individual Taxes

Tax Base For Residents and Non-Residents
According to the Federal Tax Code, an individual is a resident for Mexican tax purposes when he/she establishes a home or has his/her vital interests in Mexico. An individual’s centre of vital interests is considered located in Mexico if either more than half of the person's income comes from Mexican sources in a calendar year or if Mexico is the primary place of the individual's professional activities.

Tax Rate

Annual Tax Rates for Resident Individuals Vary from 1.92% to 35% (2024)
from MXN 1 to 8,952.49 1.92%
from MXN 8,952.50 to 75,984.55 6.4%
from MXN 75,984.56 to 133,536.07 10.88%
from MXN 133,536.08 to 155,229.80 16%
from MXN 155,229.81 to 185,852.57 17.92%
from MXN 185,852.58 to 374,837.88 21.36%
from MXN 374,837.89 to 590,795.99 23.52%
from MXN 590,796.00 to 1,127,926.84 30%
from MXN 1,127,926.85 to 1,503,902.46 32%
from MXN 1,503,902.47 to 4,511,707.37 34%
over MXN 4,511,707.38 35%
Income earned by non-residents
from MXN 1 to 125,900 exempt
from MXN 125,900 to 1,000,000 15%
over MXN 1,000,000 30%
Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
Deductions are subject to an annual limit equal to the lesser of 15% of the yearly overall income of the taxpayer or an amount equal to five annual UMA (a maximum of MXN 198,031 in 2024).
Deductions are granted for business expenses, medical, hospital and dental expenses as well as a limited amount of medical insurance, retirement annuities, mortgage interest, etc. Personal allowances are also granted to the taxpayer and his or her dependents.
Contributions made to authorised charities are deductible, limited to 7% of the prior year's taxable income. Home mortgage interest (adjusted for inflation) is deductible, subject to certain limits.
Taxpayers are allowed to deduct tuition expenses paid for their spouse, children, parents, and themselves. The maximum amount deductible per student varies from MXN 14,200 to MXN 24,500, depending on the level of education.
Resident taxpayers are allowed to deduct un-reimbursed medical, dental, nutritionist, psychologist, health insurance premiums, and funeral expenses for themselves and their dependents when they are not paid in cash.

Business owners and independent professionals can generally enjoy the same deductions as corporations. Currently, a net loss stemming from professional and business activities cannot be deducted against other income; however, the tax loss can be carried forward for ten years, solely against professional and business income. Capital losses are eligible to offset capital gains and, in certain scenarios, other investment income, but they cannot be used against compensation, business, or professional income. Rental losses are deductible against other investment income within the same tax year; nevertheless, any surplus loss cannot be carried forward.

Special Expatriate Tax Regime
Residents must pay taxes for their worldwide income, non-residents must pay only for income earned from Mexican sources. No special regime applies to expatriates.
If an employee is considered a non-resident for Mexican tax purposes, the tax rate applicable to compensation will vary from 15% (MXN 125,900 to 1 million) to 30% (above MXN 1 million). The first MXN 125,900 of employment income received in a 12-month floating period will be tax-exempt.
Non-residents are subject to withholding taxes on Mexican-source interest income, with rates between 0% and 35%. Gains arising from sales of real property located in Mexico and the sale of shares of Mexican companies outside the Mexican stock exchange are also subject to taxation: in general, the non-resident investor can elect to pay either a flat rate of 25% of the gross proceeds or 35% of the net gain. Sales of shares in the Mexican stock exchange are subject to a flat 10% tax withholding.
Capital Tax Rate
There are no taxes on estate or inheritance, therefore they are treated as normal income. Income received as a gift from a spouse, lineal ancestors, or lineal descendants enjoys exemption from taxation. However, gifts exchanged between siblings do not qualify for exemption, and gifts to parents are not exempt if the asset is subsequently transferred or sold to a sibling of the original owner. Other gifts are also exempt from taxation, as long as the value of the gift does not surpass three times the annual UMA (MXN 118,819). Any portion of the gift exceeding this threshold would be subject to income tax.
A local real estate property tax may apply. A 10% withholding tax is applied to dividends paid out to resident individuals. A 25% withholding tax is applied to income received by non-residents from the lease of real and personal property.
Employees have to contribute to social security according to varying rates and subject to various limits based on multiples of the UMA, up to a maximum of MXN 26,914 (2024).
Real property taxes are levied by the states at different rates.
Individuals qualifying as tax residents of Mexico are liable for taxes on their worldwide capital gains. However, profits from the sale of securities via the Mexican Stock Exchange incur only a 10% tax on the net gain for the year. Similarly, shares of Mexican companies traded on authorized foreign exchanges receive the same treatment, subject to approval by the Mexican Ministry of Finance for placement among the general public. Furthermore, gains from the sale of the taxpayer’s primary residence are exempt if specific criteria are met. This exemption is capped at the gain equivalent to approximately USD 244,560 of gross proceeds and is limited to one sale every three years.

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Double Taxation Treaties

Countries With Whom a Double Taxation Treaty Have Been Signed
List of double taxation agreements signed by Mexico, In Spanish
Withholding Taxes
  • Dividends: a company distributing dividends, including those sourced from investments in renewable energy and drawn from the CUFIER account, to nonresident entities or individuals or resident individuals must withhold a final tax of 10%. This rate may be reduced for nonresidents under applicable tax treaties. Dividends originating from profits earned before December 31, 2013, and forming part of the entity's CUFIN balance by that date are exempt from withholding tax under a grandfathering provision. The 10% tax can be decreased for dividends paid to Mexican resident individuals if profits from 2014 to 2016 are reinvested and distributed from 2017 onwards. Dividends disbursed to resident companies are not subject to dividend withholding tax.
  • Interest payments to nonresident entities or individuals typically incur withholding tax ranging from 4.9% (for interest paid to foreign banks and on listed debt instruments) to 35%. However, a 40% rate applies when interest payments are made to related parties located in tax havens. Reductions in the rate or relief may be accessible under relevant tax treaties. Resident companies are exempt from withholding tax on interest payments. For resident individuals, withholding tax on interest payments may vary up to 20%, contingent on the type of interest and the beneficiary, such as financial institutions.
  • Royalties disbursed to nonresident entities or individuals are typically subject to a withholding tax of 35% (for patents and trademarks) or 25% (for other types of royalties), unless a lower rate is applicable under a relevant tax treaty. However, a 40% rate is imposed when royalties are paid to related parties situated in tax havens. In contrast, royalties paid to residents are not subject to withholding tax. Payments made for the acquisition of goods intended for commercial or industrial purposes are deemed as royalties.

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Sources of Fiscal Information

Tax Authorities
Mexican Federal Tax Administration (SAT)
Mexican Ministry of Finance
Other Domestic Resources
Rankia Mexico taxation guide
Country Guides
PwC Tax Guide - Mexico

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Latest Update: June 2024