Visa Concessions for Ukrainians

Visa Concessions for Ukrainians

The Home Office has put forward a series of changes that will allow Ukrainians to safely leave Ukraine amid the Russian invasion. Home Secretary, Priti Patel, stated “We stand shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine amid this unprovoked and antidemocratic act of Russian aggression. … I have immediately ordered changes to our visa policy to provide certainty to our Ukrainian friends and colleagues living, working and studying in the UK.” The Home Office has since increased the number of staff members available at visa application centres and has opened a temporary visa application centre in Lviv. It is estimated that more than 200,000 Ukrainians could be allowed to come to the UK.

Ukrainians who are in the UK

The following changes have been announced for Ukrainians who are in the UK:

  • Ukrainians on a points-based system route can extend their leave in the UK;
  • Ukrainians on a visitor visa can switch to a points-based system route without having to leave the UK;
  • Ukrainians on a visitor visa can apply for further leave under the family route even if they do not meet the immigration requirements e.g. minimum income and English language skills;
  • Ukrainians on a seasonal worker visa can extend their leave in the UK to 31 December 2022; and
  • Ukrainians who work in temporary HGV driver or pork butcher jobs can extend their leave in the UK to 31 December 2022 or apply under the skilled worker route.

Ukrainians who are family members of British nationals

The following measures have been introduced for Ukrainians who are family members of British nationals:

  • Entry for 3 years under the Ukraine Family Scheme Visa;
  • Temporary waiver of application fees; and
  • Fast-track visa services.

The Scheme is eligible to applicants who are applying to join a UK-based family member, are Ukrainian or the immediate family member of a Ukrainian family member who is applying to the Scheme, and have been residing in Ukraine prior to 1 January 2022. Those eligible under the Scheme will be allowed to live, work, study, and access public funds in the UK. Although the applications will be free of charge, they remain subject to security checks.

Ukrainians who are in Ukraine

As it stands, the UK Government plans to set up a humanitarian scheme that would allow UK companies and citizens to sponsor Ukrainian refugees.

The Home Office has released a Guidance on support for Ukrainians who are in the UK, Ukrainians who are family members of British nationals, and Ukrainians who are in Ukraine here. The UK Government continues to assess the situation and people are encouraged to check the gov.uk for the latest information.

How can NA Law Solicitors help?

Our team of expert immigration solicitors are here to help Ukrainians leave Ukraine amid the Russian invasion. Contact us today for case-specific advice.

The UK supports Ukraine

 

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