L'va Tolstogo 6, 4th floor , office 401, Kyiv, Ukraine
27 Листопада 2018

What a foreigner should NOT do in Ukraine

   There are probably thousands of articles written about what a foreigner should and could do in Ukraine: how to come, what to take with, for how long you can come, how and when to leave. Websites of companies, who are involved even a little in the  foreigners’ support, are full of headings, about what documents are required for work and how to issue them, what are required for business trips, how to get a residence permit or renew it, how to get married or get a divorce, how to give birth to a child or get citizenship.
   We decided to dilute the endless stream of councils (including ours) with several rules on how a foreigner should not behave on the territory of Ukraine (what they should not do ...).


1. Well, you entered the country on the basic rules, having only 90 days in 180 days period for legal staying - please, do not count the days!  In any way, you have up to three months, 2-3 days less or more, who cares, you will figure it out and sort it out at the airport while leaving.

Moreover, do not inform your lawyer when you are planning to leave the country. He is a Lawyer! Who knows whom he will tell about it?  Both of them, lawyers and border guards, have no clue how to count the dates correctly. Worse still, they are always trying to steal your precious time, which you could spend for something more useful, borsch and varenylky eating for example. 


2. You have solid reasons and strong desire to stay in the country longer than 90 days. No hurry, inform your lawyer about this decision at the end of legal period of staying, one week beforehand or on the eve of long state holidays. If your lawyer is a very good one – he will do his job in time.     


3. You have wife / husband/ mother / children / great-uncle who wants to live with you? Please, tell about it only after all your documents obtaining. Moreover, if you are not married with your partner, in legal terms, if you do not have a marriage certificate, still call her/he "spouse". Of course, your lawyer will understand that there are no legal backgrounds for it.  


4. When all the terms of your documents submission/extension have been agreed with your lawyer, change your plans in a short notice. Do not tell the lawyer in advance, he will figure it out by himself after numerous ignored calls and emails. 


5. Argue – very loudly and very often. Ignore the rules and its changes, disregard the legal requirements (especially the uncomfortable one) –louder you behave, faster the results will be achieved.  


6. The best choice - do everything alone. You do not know Ukrainian/Russian – insist on interpreter’s assistance in the state authorities or even better, on English-speaking staff member. It is international language; everybody should know it, even low-paid overloaded officials. If you are fluent in Ukrainian/Russian, you definitely should do everything by yourself, there is no need to waste money on lawyers. You can fill in all the applications (or at least ask somebody to assist directly in the queue). You can gather all documents by yourself, running from one authority to another and wasting your time, but still you can.  Your documents are not accepted after two attempts, not a big deal, you have the third one. In case of the third failure, please, come back to point 5.


   Taking into account the importance of questions discussed above, we hope you will forgive us for our humorous approach. We do admit that most of foreigners take all the rules and its changes seriously, respect the government officials’ work and the last one – most of them are very considerate of their lawyers’ time.


Svitlana Mozharivska

Head of legal department