What is the Protection Status of people fleeing the war in Ukraine in the European Union ?

  • Updated : 20/03/2022

In the European Union, the European Commission explains the concept of temporary protection applied to Ukranians :

“During the 1990s, conflicts in the former Yugoslavia, in Kosovo and elsewhere demonstrated the need for special procedures to deal with mass influxes of displaced persons. The 2001 Temporary Protection Directive provides a tool for the EU to address such situations.

The provisions within this Directive, based on solidarity between EU Member States, have been triggered for the first time to offer quick and effective assistance to people fleeing the war in Ukraine.”

Link to the official version of the 2001 Temporary Protection EU Directive

As a E.U. member, France applies the E.U. directive.

The protection status is available in all European Union countries except Denmark. It doesn’t apply in Schengen associated countries (Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland). These countries have their own rules.

The official details of the protection status are available on the dedicated page of the European Commission.

Per the official page of the European Commission :

If you were permanently residing in Ukraine, and you left the country to escape war from 24 February 2022 on, you may be entitled to temporary protection in any EU country.

  • Ukrainian nationals, as well as their family members displaced by the conflict.
  • Stateless persons and nationals of other third countries who benefited from international protection or equivalent protection in Ukraine, as well as their family members.
  • Non-Ukrainian nationals of third countries and stateless persons who can prove that they were legally residing in Ukraine on the basis of a valid permanent residence permit and who cannot return in safe and durable conditions to their country of origin are eligible for either EU temporary protection or adequate national protection, depending on the EU country they are in.

Others persons who are in Ukraine will still be granted access to the EU but will not receive temporary protection. Some can apply for international protection or a legal migration status.

The protection status is not automatic.

“Member States may decide to extend temporary protection to those persons who left Ukraine before 24 February 2022 as tensions increased or who found themselves in the territory of the Union (e.g. on holidays or for work reasons) before that date and who, as a result of the armed conflict, cannot go back to Ukraine

Not likely. It is better NOT to register in a country if you do not intend to stay.

Per the official page of the European Commission : “Once you are given temporary protection by a Member State, whilst you still have the right to travel within the Union for 90 days within a 180-day period, you should be able to avail of the rights derived from temporary protection only in the Member State that granted you the residence permit. However, another Member State may also decide, on a discretionary basis, to issue you another residence permit.”

Per the official page of the European Commission :

  • residency rights
  • access to housing
  • social welfare assistance
  • medical care
  • legal guardianship and safe placement for unaccompanied children and teenagers
  • access to education for children and teenagers
  • access to the labour market (subject to EU countries’ labour market policies)
  • right to a payment account with basic features

The official page of the European Commission is listing the countries and companies offering free trains tickets to Ukranians fleeing the war.

These conditions are temporary.

  • en/euprotectionstatus.txt
  • Last modified: 2022/03/20 08:30
  • by dheurtevent