This is a short compilation of what could be relevant for people coming from Ukraine to Germany or who are already here. Maybe you know people for whom this is relevant. However, this information is no substitute for individual advice! Some things will certainly change in the next few weeks or months, since decisions of the federal government, the states and the EU are still pending, as far as residence perspectives are concerned. It looks like the so-called “EU mass influx directive” could be activated, which would facilitate a non-bureaucratic admission. However, this can only be done at the EU level. However, we know the following so far:
First of all important: It is advised not to apply for asylum immediately without a prior consultation. Every person concerned should get individual advice beforehand, if possible. Once an asylum application is filed, this blocks many other residence possibilities that could be possible especially for people with Ukrainian citizenship (through work, family, studies, etc), even if the asylum application is later withdrawn.
Visa exemption: people with Ukrainian citizenship have the right to enter without a visa (so it is a legal entry, not the so-called “illegal” entry). This means that you can enter the country without any further ado and then have a legal short stay (90 days). Unfortunately, a biometric passport is still required.
Without visa exemption: Those who do not have a passport or are third-country nationals residing in Ukraine can, according to information from the German Foreign Office, apply for a visa for Germany from now on as an exception at the foreign missions in neighboring countries of Ukraine.
Extension of stay after the 90 days: After the 90 days have expired, it is also possible in principle to apply for a genuine residence permit for another 90 days at the Foreigners’ Registration Office.
In Berlin there is just an extension for Ukrainians* who are already here visa-free or with a visit visa without having to apply for it, for the time being until May 31.
You can use this time to get advice on what options are open to you. During this time, however, one is (according to the current status) excluded from social benefits and also receives no work permit, if no asylum application is filed.
For Ukrainians who are already in Germany:
1) Ukrainians who are here without a visa or with a visit visa, i.e. who have not applied for asylum, can currently also apply for a residence permit directly at the Foreigners’ Registration Office (at the Ausländerbehörde, NOT at the BAMF!) (e.g. because of family, work, studies, etc.), if they meet the requirements for this without having to go through the visa procedure.
2. for Ukrainians* who are currently already in the asylum procedure: There is a decision stop at the BAMF (Federal Office for Migration and Refugees), so you do not need to do anything at the moment. In case of doubt: Visit a counseling center. 3.
3) For Ukrainians who have already unsuccessfully applied for asylum in Germany and have been rejected and are still in Germany: They will not be deported at the moment! In principle, there is the possibility of a follow-up application, but since much is in motion, especially at the EU level, it is advised to wait and see what the developments will bring. And it is best to seek individual advice in the coming weeks.
The disadvantages of a hasty asylum application can be: The obligation to live in an initial reception center, to be redistributed within Germany, so you can not choose the place of residence, possibly to get into the Dublin procedure, possibly a block on other residence options. So be sure to get advice beforehand!