Immigration Updates – 25th of February

Contributor(s): Daniel King
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    General Updates


    Poland is offering immigration concessions to Ukrainian nationals fleeing the armed conflict in Ukraine, who will be admitted to Poland.

    If they do not have a place of stay in Poland, they should go to the nearest reception point, where:

    • they will receive more detailed information about their stay in Poland;
    • they will be provided with temporary accommodation;
    • they will receive a hot meal, drink, basic medical assistance and a place to rest.

    Those who entered Poland based on:

    • visa-free travel regime, their legal stay is 90 days;
    • national visa or a Schengen visa, their stay is legal in accordance with the period of validity of the visa and the residency period indicated therein; After the expiry of the residence on the basis of the national visa, they can continue their stay without leaving under visa-free movement up to 90 days with a biometric passport;
    • long-term visa or a residence permit issued by another Schengen state, their legal stay is up to 90 days;
    • consent of the commander in Chief of the Polish Border Guard, their legal stay lasts 15 days.

    Those who wish to extend their legal stay can submit an application for a temporary residence permit or a permanent residence permit. These applications shall be submitted in the Voivodeship Office having jurisdiction over the place of residence.

    Regardless of the above, you will be permitted to legally stay in Poland on the basis of special provisions regarding the COVID-19 epidemic.

    United Kingdom

    On 17 February 2022, the Tier 1 Investor route was closed to all new applicants from all nationalities, over security concerns.

    Initial. Extension and settlement applications already under consideration will be decided under the previous rules, but processing may be delayed.

    Existing Tier 1 Investor migrants are permitted to make an extension application until 16 February 2026. Extensions will be granted for two years.

    Extension applicants applying from outside the United Kingdom will need to hold valid immigration permission for Tier 1 investors when they apply, or to have held Tier 1 Investor permission within the 12 months immediately before they apply.

    Existing Tier 1 Investor migrants are permitted to make a settlement application until 16 February 2028, after which date they will need to apply for an alternative immigration status or leave the UK before their immigration permission expires.

    The Government intends to make future alternative provision for investment-related migration through reforms to the existing Innovator immigration route. This will make more targeted provision for investment-related migration, offering a route for entry and stay for overseas nationals with a track record of investment activity overseas and credible plans to engage in such activity. It is expected that these new arrangements will be delivered through further changes to the Immigration Rules in Autumn 2022.

    United Kingdom

    The UK government has announced the following immigration concessions for Ukrainian nationals in the UK with valid visas.

    • Ukrainian nationals on an existing points-based system route can extend their leave in the UK.
    • Ukrainian nationals on an existing visitor visa can exceptionally switch into a points-based system immigration route without having to leave the UK
    • Ukrainian nationals on an existing visitor visa can apply under the family route for further leave without meeting the immigration status requirement, provided they meet the requirements for leave based on exceptional circumstances
    • Ukrainian nationals on an existing seasonal worker visa will have their leave in the UK extended to 31 December 2022
    • Ukrainian nationals in temporary HGV/pork butcher jobs will have their leave in the UK extended to 31 December 2022 and will also be allowed to apply to the skilled worker route

    Dependants of British Nationals resident in Ukraine who need a UK visa can apply for a free family migration visa through the new, temporary location in Lviv or through a Visa Application Centre in nearby countries, including Poland, Moldova, Romania and Hungary. However, all other visa services in Ukraine have been suspended.

    COVID-19 Updates

    This week, many governments have again updated their COVID-19 measures and/or the lists of countries or regions affected.

    Please find some highlights below – for more information on COVID-19 restrictions in any country, please get in touch. We’re happy to help.

    European Union

    • Effective 1 March 2022:
      • The European Council recommends that member states should lift the temporary restriction on non-essential travel to the EU for persons vaccinated with an EU- or WHO-approved vaccine, provided that they have received the last dose of the primary vaccination series at least 14 days and no more than 270 days before arrival or they have received a booster dose.
      • The Council also recommends that member states should lift the temporary restriction on non-essential travel to the EU for persons who have recovered from COVID-19 within 180 days prior to travelling to the EU.
      • For persons vaccinated with a WHO-approved vaccine, member states could also require a negative PCR test taken at the earliest 72 hours before departure and could apply additional measures such as quarantine or isolation. A negative PCR test before departure could also be required for persons who have recovered from COVID-19, as well as for persons who have been vaccinated with an EU-approved vaccine but do not hold an EU or equivalent certificate.\
    • Effective 22 February 2022, EU member states can issue EU digital COVID certificates on the basis of a positive rapid antigen test, as an alternative to a positive PCR test.
      • The rapid antigen test must be one approved by the EU.


    • Effective 18 February 2022:
      • The following are currently considered areasof variant ofconcern:
        • NONE.
      • The following are new high-risk areas:
      • The following are no longer high-risk areas:
        • Afghanistan, Algeria, Andorra, Fiji, France (the French overseas departments of French Guiana, Mayotte, Saint Pierre and Miquelon), India, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Laos, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uzbekistan.
      • The following are high riskareas:
        • Albania, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria (except the municipality of Mittelberg and Jungholz and Rißtal in the municipal area of Vomp and Eben am Achensee ), Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Dominica, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France (incl. Guadeloupe, Martinique, New Caledonia, St. Martin and St. Barthélemy), Georgia, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, Iraq, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Maldives, Mexico, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Netherlands (incl. Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, St. Eustatius, Saba, Sint Maarten), North Korea, North Macedonia, Norway, Oman, Palau, Palestine, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Saint Lucia, San Marino, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uruguay, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen.


    • Effective 25 February 2022, all domestic and travel restrictions due to the COVID pandemic are lifted.


    • Effective 1 March 2022, for arrivals from all non-EU countries (Lists D and E), the same rules apply as for arrivals from EU countries (List C):
      • Present an EU digital COVID certificate or equivalent, showing one of the following:
        • Vaccination no more than 270 days after the last dose.
        • Recovery no more than 180 days from the date of the first positive test.
        • A negative PCR test carried out no more than 72 hours before entry or antigen test carried out no more than 48 hours before arrival.
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