If you're from Ukraine and your visa is ending

This advice applies to Wales. See advice for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland

There are a number of ways to stay in the UK.

If you have a family or skilled worker visa, it’s best to apply to extend your visa if you can. This means your time in the UK will continue to count towards getting indefinite leave to remain.

If you can’t extend your visa or you have any other type of visa, you should check if you can:

  • switch to a ‘Ukraine Extension Scheme’ visa

  • switch to a work or study visa

  • claim asylum - if there aren’t any other ways to stay in the UK

If you have a seasonal worker visa, the Home Office will automatically extend it until the end of the year - you have to stay with the same employer. You can also apply to one of the new schemes at any time - for example if your employment ends.

If you don’t have any documents you need for an application, explain why you don't have them when you apply. The Home Office should accept your application if there’s a good reason you don’t have the documents.

If your visa has already ended

You can apply for a Ukraine Extension Scheme visa if your visa ended on or after 1 January 2022. You don’t need to explain why you’re applying late.

You can only apply for a different visa or apply to extend your visa if your visa expired in the last 14 days. You must explain why you’re applying late. The Home Office will only accept your application if you have a good reason.

You can claim asylum at any time - it doesn’t matter if your visa ended more than 14 days ago.

Switching to a Ukraine Extension Scheme visa

You can apply for an extension scheme visa if you’re in the UK and you had permission to stay in the UK on 18 March 2022. Children born after 18 March 2022 can also get a visa. It’s free to apply.

You can apply if you or your partner is a Ukrainian citizen. Your partner must be:

  • your husband, wife or fiancé(e)

  • your civil partner or proposed civil partner

  • any partner you’ve lived with for at least 2 years

If your current visa has ended, you can apply for an extension scheme visa if it ended on or after 1 January 2022.

If you get an extension scheme visa, you can stay in the UK for 3 years - minus any time you’ve already been on the ‘Ukraine family scheme’ or ‘Homes for Ukraine scheme’.

You can work, study and claim benefits while you’re in the UK. Getting an extension scheme visa won't help you get a right to live in the UK permanently.

If you’re aged under 18

You can apply if at least 1 of your parents is a Ukrainian citizen.

If your parent is applying to the scheme, they can apply for you too. If they’re not applying, they need to give you written permission to apply.

If you don’t have written permission, you’re allowed to apply if there’s a good reason you can’t get permission - for example, if no one can find your parents.

Check how to apply to the extension scheme

You can apply to the extension scheme on GOV.UK.

Switching to a work or study visa

The government have made it easier for you to switch your visa if you’re a Ukrainian citizen and you either:

  • were in the UK legally before 24 February 2022

  • applied to enter the UK before 24 February 2022

You can usually switch to a work or study visa if you qualify for the visa and pay the fees - even if you would normally have to leave the UK to apply. This is called a ‘concession’.

You can now switch to a work or study visa from most types of visa, including:

  • Visitor

  • Temporary Worker

  • Student or Short-term Student

  • Parent of a Child Student

  • Domestic Worker - any type

If your partner or child came to the UK as your dependant, they can also switch to a work or study visa.

Check how to apply

Important

You must ask the Home Office to apply the concession and explain why. Tell them you can’t go to Ukraine to apply for the visa because of the conflict.

You can ask for the concession on the application form or in a letter you send with the form.

If you don’t ask the Home Office to apply the concession they might refuse your application.

You can:

Claiming asylum

If you don’t have another way to stay in the UK, you can claim asylum. If you need to claim asylum, you can:

Page last reviewed on 15 March 2022