Visa under the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine)
A. General overview
The Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme allows Ukrainian nationals and their family members to come to the UK if they have a named sponsor under the Homes for Ukraine Scheme.
It is free to apply.
You will be able to live, work and study in the UK and access public funds.
If you’re Ukrainian and need any assistance, please call the 24/7 free helpline +44 808 164 8810 (0808 164 8810 if you’re in the UK).
If you cannot contact UK 0808 numbers, please use +44 (0)175 390 7510.
B. Eligibility requirements
To apply to the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme you must be Ukrainian, or the immediate family member of a Ukrainian national, who:
- has been residing in Ukraine on or immediately before 1 January 2022 (including those who have now left Ukraine)
- is currently outside the UK
- has a UK-based sponsor who is eligible for the Homes for Ukraine Scheme – which can be applied via the link https://homesforukraine.campaign.gov.uk/
Recognised Providers: Organisations who can help guests from Ukraine find sponsors in the UK
This is a list of voluntary and community sector organisations running schemes which provide support for and help match people coming from Ukraine with sponsors in the UK, as part of the Homes for Ukraine scheme - https://www.gov.uk/guidance/recognised-providers-organisations-who-can-help-guests-from-ukraine-find-sponsors-in-the-uk
An immediate family member is your:
- spouse or civil partner
- unmarried partner (you must have been living together in a relationship for at least 2 years)
- child who is under 18
- parent (if you are under 18)
- fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner
You and your sponsor will be subject to security and safeguarding checks.
If your intended sponsor is based in the Bailiwick of Guernsey, Isle of Man or Jersey, they should contact the relevant authority listed below before making an application to check the details of the sponsorship schemes available in those jurisdictions, which may differ than that provided by the UK government:
- Bailiwick of Guernsey (Guernsey, Alderney and Sark): [email protected]
- Isle of Man: [email protected]
- Jersey: [email protected]
C. How long you can stay
You can stay in the UK for up to 3 years.
It is free to apply to the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme.
You do not need to pay the immigration health surcharge or biometric enrolment fee for this scheme.
E. How to apply
You must apply online for the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme by the following link: https://apply.visas-immigration.service.gov.uk/has-international-ukrainian-passport
You and your sponsor can fill in the form together.
This application is also an application for a biometric immigration document.
By completing this application you confirm that both the applicant and the sponsor have given permission for their data to be shared and contact details used for the purpose of checks and supporting the sponsor arrangement.
If you hold a valid Ukrainian international passport or an expired Ukrainian international passport with a formal extension stamp issued by the Ukrainian government
If you hold a valid Ukrainian international passport or an expired Ukrainian international passport with a formal extension stamp issued by the Ukrainian government, you will need to complete an application online, but you do not need to attend an appointment at a visa application centre (VAC) to give your biometric information.
Uploading your documents
You must upload a copy of the photograph page of your valid or expired Ukrainian international passport.
If you are applying with an expired Ukrainian international passport you must upload a copy of the page where the formal extension stamp issued by the Ukrainian government is shown.
You must provide documents that show the identity of your UK-based sponsor. For example a:
- driving licence
- national identity card
- biometric residence permit
If you have them, you should also provide any documents that show you were residing in Ukraine on or immediately before 1 January 2022.
You can upload your documents using our commercial partner document upload app. This will be either TLS or VFS depending on which country you are applying in. You can download the app from the TLS or VFS website when you make your application.
If you need support to upload images of your documents, you can book an appointment at a VAC.
F. Official permission letter
Once your application has been processed you will receive an official permission letter from UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) confirming that you can travel to the UK.
The permission letter will allow you to board a plane or other form of transport to the UK.
You should not travel to the UK until you have received an official permission letter.
G. At the UK border
Border Force, airlines and carriers will be informed that customers with valid Ukrainian passports who have been accepted under the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme will be issued with a letter confirming they have permission to travel to the UK without a UK visa in their passport.
When you arrive in the UK, you will need to show your permission letter to Border Force officers who will endorse your passport with a 6-month entry stamp.
The 6-month entry stamp is evidence of your right to work, study and claim benefits in the UK.
H. Extending your stay in the UK
You will need to submit your biometrics within 6 months of arriving in the UK to extend your stay for up to 3 years and be issued with a biometric residence permit (BRP) as evidence of your immigration status.
The online form to provide your biometric information will be available soon.
Once we have received your details, we will tell you how to provide your biometric information.
This might be by providing us with a digitised facial image using the UK Immigration: ID Check app or by visiting one of our application centres in the UK to provide a facial photograph and your fingerprints.
You do not need to do this as soon as you reach the UK, but you do need to make sure that you have provided your biometrics before the 6 months leave you are granted ends.
If you do not hold a valid Ukrainian international passport
If you do not hold a valid Ukrainian international passport you will need to book and attend an appointment at a visa application centre.
If you have a Ukrainian domestic passport or ID card, you will need to book and attend an appointment at a visa application centre.
Visa application centres
You do not need to book an appointment at a VAC to provide your biometric information if you hold a valid Ukrainian international passport.
You will need to have your photograph and fingerprints taken at a VAC as part of your application. Children under the age of 5 who do not hold a valid Ukrainian international passport will not have their fingerprints taken but will still need to book and attend a VAC appointment and have a digital photograph taken.
Visa application centre availability
VACs in Ukraine are currently closed. You can apply at a VAC in any country if you are able to travel safely.
There is a temporary VAC for people applying for the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme in Rzeszow, Poland. You’ll need to complete your online application and book an appointment before attending the Rzeszow VAC - walk-in appointments are no longer accepted.
VACs are currently operating throughout Europe including:
- Budapest, Hungary
- Chisinau, Moldova
- Warsaw, Poland
- Bucharest, Romania
- Paris, France
K. How long it takes
You will need to await a decision from UKVI on your application before travelling.
We are prioritising Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme applications and aim to make a decision as quickly as possible.
You will be contacted when a decision has been made with more guidance on the travel process.
If you are granted permission under the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme you will receive either:
- an official letter of permission (if you hold a valid Ukrainian international passport)
- a visa (if you attended a VAC to give your biometrics)
Please do not attend the VAC to collect your visa until you have been contacted.
L. Appeals and Administrative Review
There will be no right of appeal or right to an administrative review for this Ukraine Family Scheme in case of refusal.
In case of getting refusal, we will need to carefully study the reasons for the refusal and submit the visa application again, taking into account the primary grounds for refusal.
- We can advise on the procedure, requirements and merits of making an application for Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme
- We can advise and represent our clients in making representations in support of their immigration matters
- We can advise on the merits in case of refusal
Whatever the case, we are here to assist, advise and represent our clients in relation to any aspect of their immigration matters.
Posted on Mar 18, 2022.
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