News & Insights

Ukraine Family Scheme Visa & Sponsor Scheme

Visa schemes have been introduced for Ukrainian nationals coming to the UK.

In response to the events unfolding in the Ukraine, the UK has launched the Ukraine Family Scheme, allowing immediate and extended family members of British nationals, people settled in the UK and certain other residents to come to the UK. The visa lasts for three years and it is free to apply. As of 4pm on 20 March 2022 over 61,000 applications have been opened, with 31,000 of those having been submitted. 10,200 visas have been issued so far. Please note that this information is changing daily, so please refer to the guidance for the latest information.


To apply to the Ukraine Family Scheme, the individual must:

  • apply to join or accompany a UK-based family member;
  • be Ukrainian, or the immediate family member of a Ukrainian national who is applying to the scheme; and
  • have been residing in Ukraine on or immediately before 1 January 2022 (including those who have now left Ukraine).

The UK-based family member must be either an immediate family member, an extended family member or an immediate family member of an extended family member. The Home Office lists of who is included in these definitions can be found here.

Application process for applying from outside the UK

If the visa applicant has a valid Ukrainian passport, they can start the application online:

Applicants are required to provide:

  • a photograph of their passport; and
  • an official document confirming their relationship to their UK-based family member.

The Home Office will issue a letter or email confirming whether the applicant can travel to the UK.

If the visa applicant does not hold a Ukrainian passport they will have to:

The Home Office will contact the applicant as soon as their visa application has been processed.

Application process for applying from outside the UK

If eligible, individuals can apply to the Ukraine Family Scheme from within the UK under the same link: and will be able to switch from their current work, study or visit visas onto different visa routes. Applicants will be required to book and attend an appointment at a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services service point in the UK (

Ukrainian nationals on existing points-based routes can extend their stay in the UK and Ukrainian nationals on an existing visitor visa can exceptionally switch into a points-based immigration route without having to leave the UK.

Ukrainian nationals on existing visitor visas can also apply under the normal family route to extend their stay without meeting the immigration status requirement, provided they meet the requirements based on the exceptional circumstances.

Ukrainian nationals without family in the UK

A new sponsorship scheme has been announced for Ukrainian nationals without family in the UK by the government. This will allow sponsors, such as communities, private sponsors and local authorities to act as sponsors for individuals or families. There will be no limit to the scheme. The initial period of leave will be 12 months and successful applicant will be able to work and access public services. The Home Office has published a Q&A on how the scheme will work, and  a webpage was launched on 14 March 2022 allowing UK individuals, charities, community groups and businesses to record their interest in the new scheme.

The Home Office has also provided a helpline: +44 (0)808 164 8810 – select option 1 or +44 (0)175 390 7510 (if UK 0808 numbers can’t be contacted). Additionally, there is the option to subscribe to updates to UK government response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

FSP can advise on all aspects of immigration and will keep you up to date with the latest developments as they are released from the Home Office.

If you require our assistance, please contact our Head of Immigration, [email protected].