Obtaining refugee status, subsidiary or temporary protection

Ukraine provides protection to foreigners and stateless persons, who are seeking it on Ukrainian territory, by means of:

— recognition as a refugee
— recognition as a person in need of subsidiary protection
— recognition as a person in need of temporary protection

Contact lawyer

Get a free initial consultation

+380987777756
WhatsApp
Viber

Essential and Background Information

In 2002 Ukraine joined the UN Convention of 1951 and Protocol of 1967.

According to the Law of Ukraine «On Refugees and Persons in Need of Subsidiary or Temporary Protection» from 08.07.2011 No 3671-VI (hereinafter – the Law) Ukraine provides protection to foreigners and stateless persons, who are seeking it on Ukrainian territory, by means of:

— recognition as a refugee;
— recognition as a person in need of subsidiary protection;
— recognition as a person in need of temporary protection.

According to Ukrainian migration laws, a person who is not a citizen of Ukraine can be recognized as a refugee and who, owing to justified fears of becoming a victim of persecution on grounds of race, religion, nationality, citizenship (citizenship), membership of a particular social group or political convictions, is outside the country of his or her civil stay and can not use the protection of this country or do not want to use this protection as a result of such fears, or, having no citizenship (nationality) and being outside the province nor our previous habitual residence, can not or does not want to return to her due to the mentioned fears.

A person in need of subsidiary protection is a person who is not a refugee in accordance with the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Protocol on the Status of Refugees and the aforementioned Law, but needs protection, since such a person was forced to arrive in Ukraine or stay in Ukraine as a result of the threat her life, safety or freedom in the country of origin because of fears of the death penalty or execution of a death or torture sentence, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment or commonly used violence in situations of international or internal armed conflict or a systematic violation of human rights and can not or does not want to return to such a country as a result of these fears.

Persons in need of temporary protection are foreigners and stateless persons who are massively forced to seek protection in Ukraine owing to external aggression, foreign occupation, civil war, ethnic conflicts, natural or man-made disasters or other events that violate public order in a certain part. or throughout the country of origin.

In accordance with the Law, a foreign citizen may apply for recognition as a refugee to the relevant body of the migration service.

Recognition by a refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection

In accordance with the provisions of the Law, a foreign citizen or a stateless person applies for recognition as a refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection to a territorial body of the State Migration Service of Ukraine. Such an application shall be submitted by a foreigner or stateless person or her legal representative personally at the place of the applicant’s temporary stay.

The main form of granting protection to foreign citizens in Ukraine is recognition of refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection. A refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection can not be expelled or compulsorily returned to a country where their life or liberty is endangered by race, religion, nationality, citizenship (nationality), membership of a particular social group or political convictions, as well as other reasons recognized by international treaties or international organizations to which Ukraine is party, as such that can not be returned to the countries of origin.

A person who intends to be recognized as a refugee in Ukraine or a person who needs subsidiary protection has crossed the state border of Ukraine in accordance with the procedure established by the legislation of Ukraine, must within five working days apply to the relevant territorial office of the Migration Service with a statement on recognition as a refugee or a person , which requires subsidiary protection.

A person who, with the intention of being recognized as a refugee in Ukraine or a person in need of subsidiary protection, has illegally crossed the state border of Ukraine at the time of entry into Ukraine, must apply without delay to the relevant territorial office of the migration service with a petition for recognition as a refugee or a person needs additional protection.

Registration of documents for resolving the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person requiring subsidiary protection is carried out on the basis of an application for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection. Such an application is submitted in person by a foreigner or a stateless person or its legal representative to the relevant territorial office of the migration service at the place of temporary residence of the applicant.

The relevant territorial body of the migration service:
— registers the application and documents submitted for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection;
— familiarize the applicant or his legal representative with their own signature with the procedure for making a decision on their applications, rights and duties of the person in respect of which a decision was made to issue documents for resolving the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection;
— conducts fingerprinting of a person who has applied for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection;
— in case of necessity, send a person for examination in order to establish the age in accordance with the procedure established by the legislation of Ukraine;
— fills in the registration form on the person applying for recognition as a refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection and members of his family who are under the age of eighteen;
— fills in other necessary documents;
— fills up a personal matter;
— clarifies the procedure for applying for free legal aid;
— enters the received information to the centralized information system.

The Migration Service body, which has accepted the application for the recognition of a foreigner or stateless person to be recognized as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, issues the applicant an application for protection in Ukraine and registers the applicant. Within fifteen working days from the date of registration of the application, the Migration Service body interviews the applicant, examines the information contained in the application and other documents, requires additional information and decides on the processing of documents to resolve the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs an subsidiary protection, or refusal to process documents for solving a given issue.

At the request of the applicant, a lawyer takes part in the preliminary examination of the application for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection. The appointment of a lawyer to provide legal aid to the applicant is in accordance with the established procedure.

During an interview with an applicant who does not speak Ukrainian or Russian, the migration service authority provides the interpreter with a language in which the applicant can communicate. The applicant has the right to bring the interpreter at his own expense or at the expense of other legal entities or individuals. The translator must adhere to the confidentiality of the mandatory registration by the migration service body of the non-disclosure receipt of the information contained in the applicant’s personal file.

The decision on the registration or denial of documents in order to resolve the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person requiring subsidiary protection is made on the basis of a written opinion of the employee who conducts the case and is issued by order of the head of the migration service body.

In case of making a decision on the registration of documents for resolving the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, the Migration Service body extends the validity period of the application for protection in Ukraine.

A decision to refuse to process documents for resolving issues of recognition as a refugee or a person requiring subsidiary protection shall be taken on applications which are manifestly ill-founded and if the statements are of an abusive nature: if the applicant is to be recognized as a refugee or a person who needs an subsidiary protection, declares himself or herself for another person, as well as for applications submitted by persons who have been denied recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection in connection with the absence of grounds for the recognition of races ntsem or a person in need of subsidiary protection.

In case of a decision to refuse to process documents for resolving the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, the migration service authority within three working days from the day of its adoption sends a written notification to the applicant or his legal representative stating the reasons for the refusal and explanation the procedure for appealing such a decision.

If a person exercises the right of appeal to the Migration Service body before making a decision on the complaint, he retains the documents certifying the applicant’s identity and other documents, and informs the internal affairs body about the place of residence of the person within three working days.

If a person does not use the right to appeal within five working days from the date of her written notification of a decision to refuse to issue documents to resolve the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, the migration service authority shall remove from the person the application for treatment for protection in Ukraine, informing the internal affairs body at the place of residence of the person within three working days, and returns to the person the documents certifying the applicant’s identity and other documents that are located and kept by the migration service.

Consideration of the application for recognition as a refugee or a person requiring subsidiary protection is carried out by the interregional units on the issues of refugees of the territorial bodies of the SMS within two months from the date of the decision on the issuance of documents for resolving the issue of recognition as a refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection. The term of the review may be extended by the head of the migration service authority on the motivated submission of the employee who is considering the application, but not more than three months.

An interviewer with the applicant or his legal representative conducts interviews with an employee of the Migration Service who are intended to identify additional information necessary to assess the authenticity of the facts reported by the applicant or his legal representative.

After examination of documents, verification of facts communicated by a person who has applied for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, the migration service body prepares a written opinion on the recognition or refusal of recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection.

The individual case of the applicant, together with the written statement of the Migration Service body, who considered the application, shall be sent to the specially authorized central executive body on migration in order to make a final decision on the application.

As a result of the comprehensive study and evaluation of all documents and materials that may be evidence of the availability of conditions for recognition as a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection, the specially authorized central executive body on migration issues makes a decision on recognition as a refugee or a person who needs additional protection, or refusal to recognize a refugee or a person who needs subsidiary protection.

A foreigner or stateless person is recognized as a refugee in Ukraine or a person who needs subsidiary protection and is considered to be permanently residing in Ukraine since the decision to recognize them as refugees or who are legally staying in the territory of Ukraine on a permanent basis.

The decision of the specially authorized central executive body on migration issues shall be sent within three working days from the date of its adoption, together with the applicant’s personal file, to the migration service authority that considered the application.

The migration service authority within fifteen working days from the day the decision to recognize a refugee or a person in need of subsidiary protection is issued to each person under the age of sixteen, a refugee card or identity card requiring subsidiary protection. A refugee certificate or identity card requiring subsidiary protection is a ground for registration in the Migration Service body at the refugee’s place of residence or a person in need of subsidiary protection.

A refugee certificate or ID card requiring subsidiary protection is issued for a term of five years.

A person recognized as a refugee and a person who needs subsidiary protection who have reached the age of sixteen have the right to get a travel document for traveling abroad in accordance with the procedure established by the legislation of Ukraine.

Refugee status and subsidiary protection are lost if the person:
— voluntarily again used the protection of the country of citizenship (or place of origin);
— has acquired the citizenship of Ukraine or has voluntarily acquired the citizenship which he had before or acquired the citizenship of another state and enjoyed its protection;
— voluntarily returned to the country she left or outside of which she was the victim of persecution due to justified fears;
— being a stateless person, may return to the country of his previous permanent residence, since the circumstances in which he was recognized as a refugee or a person in need of additional protection no longer exists;
— has received a shelter or permission to permanently reside in another country;
— can not refuse to use the protection of the country of its civic affairs because the circumstances on the basis of which the person was recognized as a refugee or a person in need of additional protection no longer exists.

Persons recognized as refugees or persons requiring subsidiary protection enjoy the same rights and freedoms as well as have the same responsibilities as citizens of Ukraine, except in cases established by the Constitution and laws of Ukraine, as well as by international agreements, consent to obligatory of which is provided by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

A person is deprived of refugee status or subsidiary protection if it carries out activities that constitute a threat to national security, public order, and the health of the population of Ukraine.

A decision to recognize a person as a refugee or a person in need of additional protection is canceled if he has submitted false information, has submitted false documents that have become grounds for a person to be recognized as a refugee or a person who needs additional protection.