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Migration and Home Affairs


A procedure of exceptional character to provide, in the event of a mass influx or imminent mass influx of displaced persons from third countries who are unable to return to their country of origin, immediate and temporary protection to such persons, in particular if there is also a risk that the asylum system will be unable to process this influx without adverse effects for its efficient operation, in the interests of the persons and other persons requesting protection.


Art. 2(a) of Council Directive 2001/55/EC (Temporary Protection Directive)


  • BG: временна закрила
  • CS: dočasná ochrana
  • DE: vorübergehender Schutz
  • EL: προσωρινή προστασία
  • EN: temporary protection
  • ES: protección temporal
  • ET: ajutine kaitse
  • FI: tilapäinen suojelu
  • FR: protection temporaire
  • GA: cosaint shealadach
  • HU: ideiglenes védelem
  • IT: protezione temporanea
  • LT: laikinoji apsauga
  • LV: pagaidu aizsardzība
  • MT: Protezzjoni temporanja
  • NL: tijdelijke bescherming
  • PL: tymczasowa ochrona
  • PT: proteção temporária
  • RO: protecţie temporară
  • SK: dočasná ochrana (EU acquis); dočasné útočisko
  • SL: začasna zaščita
  • SV: tillfälligt skydd
  • NO: midlertidig beskyttelse (b); mellombels vern (n)

Broader Term(s)

Related Term(s)


1. The Temporary Protection Directive is a framework for a possible temporary protection system which is not established automatically, but only after the Council of the EU acting by a qualified majority on a proposal from the Commission, agrees that there is a mass influx of displaced persons. On 4 March 2022, the Council of the EU adopted Decision (EU) 2022/382, recognising the existence of a mass influx of displaced persons from Ukraine as a result of the military invasion by Russian forces that began on 24 February 2022. The scale of the influx fulfils the criteria of the Directive.

2. With the decision's entry into force people having fled from Ukraine may apply for a temporary residence permit as of 4 March 2022. The Council Decision applies to the following categories of persons displaced from Ukraine on or after 24 February 2022:

  • Ukrainian nationals residing in Ukraine before 24 February 2022;
  • stateless persons and nationals of third countries other than Ukraine, who benefited from international protection or equivalent national protection in Ukraine before 24 February 2022; and
  • family members of the persons referred to in the first two categories, even if they are not Ukrainian nationals.

According to Art. 2(2) of the Council Decision it also applies to stateless persons and nationals of third countries other than Ukraine who can prove that they were legally residing in Ukraine before 24 February 2022 on the basis of a valid permanent residence permit issued in accordance with Ukrainian law, and who are unable to return safely and permanently to their country or region of origin. Art. 2 (3) of the Council Decision allows EU Member States to apply the Council Decision to other persons, including to stateless persons and to nationals of third countries other than Ukraine, who were residing legally in Ukraine and who are unable to return safely and permanently to their country or region of origin.

3. The Temporary Protection Directive defines the decision-making procedure needed to trigger, extend or end temporary protection. It foresees harmonised rights for the beneficiaries of temporary protection, including:

  • a residence permit for the entire duration of the protection (which can last from one year to three years),
  • appropriate information on temporary protection,
  • access to employment,
  • access to accommodation or housing,
  • access to social welfare or means of subsistence,
  • access to medical treatment,
  • access to education for minors,
  • opportunities for families to reunite in certain circumstances, and
  • guarantees for access to the normal asylum procedure.

Specific provisions have been drawn up for unaccompanied minors and for those having undergone particularly traumatic experiences (such as rape, physical or psychological violence).

4.The right to temporary protection is in addition to the right to apply for international protection. It is possible to apply for international protection under the Recast Qualification Directive (Directive 2011/95/EU) at any time. Temporary protection does not affect the rules for granting refugee status or subsidiary protection status under the Qualification Directive. These continue to apply, as do the procedural rules in the Recast Procedures Directive (Directive 2013/32/EU) and the rules on the status of applicants for international protectionin the Recast Reception Conditions Directive (Directive 2013/32/EU).

5. The Directive also contains provisions for the return of displaced persons to their country of origin and for excluding individuals, who have committed serious crimes or, who pose a threat to security from the benefit of temporary protection.

6. EU Member States have transposed the Directive into their national law. More information on the procedure at national level including the competent authorities in the different Member States can be found on the European Commission website 'EU stands with Ukraine' and on the European Commission website 'Information for people fleeing the war in Ukraine'.

7. The Temporary Protection Directive in principle applies to all EU Member States, however, DK opted out from the Directive. New legislation is on the way that Ukrainian displaced persons do not need to apply for asylum, but will obtain a temporary residence permit with access to school, education and work. The new law will cover Ukrainian citizens and persons with refugee status in Ukraine as well as accompanying core family and other family members supported in the same household. For more information see the website of the Danish Immigration Service.

8. CH and NO apply a temporary protection mechanism similar to that of the EU; in CH Ukrainians fleeing the war will be eligible for a temporary “S permit' to live and immediately work there, NO is offering a temporary collective protection which does not constitute grounds for a permanent residence permit. Both countries waive an individual assessment and thus facilitate an unbureaucratic and speedy process.

9. The UK 'Ukraine Family Scheme' allows family members of British nationals, UK settled persons and certain others to come to or stay in the UK. For more information see the website of the UK Home Office 'Immigration information for Ukrainians in the UK, British nationals and their family members'. In addition, the government has announced plans for a new sponsorship scheme 'Homes for Ukraine' for Ukrainians without any family ties to the UK. The scheme will allow sponsors, such as communities, private sponsors or local authorities, to bring those forced to flee Ukraine to the UK. There will be no limit on this scheme and those who come under this scheme will also be granted leave for an initial period of 12 months and able to work and access public services. For more information see the website of UK Government on UK visa support for Ukrainian nationals.