The Mexican government created the matricula consular in 1870 to enable Mexican nationals living abroad get help from local consulates if the need arose. The Mexican government issued new matricula cards with a validity of five years in 2002, according to the Center for Immigration Studies.
The matricula consular introduced in 1870 was an official document that certified the name and age of the bearer, states the Center for Immigration Studies. In the United States, only illegal aliens use the card since legal immigrants have documents issued by the U.S. government. The new matricula card issued in 2002 contains the name, date of birth and U.S. address of the bearer.