Russia Travel Advisory
April 19, 2022

Do Not Travel and Leave Immediately

Ukraine Crisis
April 26, 2022

Information for U.S. Citizens in Ukraine

International Parental Child Abduction

English

Country Information

Ukraine

Ukraine
Ukraine
Do not travel to Ukraine due to Russian military invasion and COVID-19. U.S. citizens in Ukraine should depart immediately if it is safe to do so using any commercial or other privately available ground transportation options. U.S. citizens should not travel to Ukraine due to the active armed conflict and the singling out of U.S. citizens in Ukraine by Russian government security officials. All U.S. citizens should carefully monitor U.S. government notices and local and international media outlets for information about changing security conditions and alerts to shelter in place. Those remaining in Ukraine should exercise increased caution due to the potential for active combat, crime, and civil unrest. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Do not travel to Ukraine due to Russian military invasion and COVID-19. U.S. citizens in Ukraine should depart immediately if it is safe to do so using any commercial or other privately available ground transportation options. U.S. citizens should not travel to Ukraine due to the active armed conflict and the singling out of U.S. citizens in Ukraine by Russian government security officials. All U.S. citizens should carefully monitor U.S. government notices and local and international media outlets for information about changing security conditions and alerts to shelter in place. Those remaining in Ukraine should exercise increased caution due to the potential for active combat, crime, and civil unrest. Read the entire Travel Advisory.  

U.S. citizens in Ukraine should depart immediately if it is safe to do so using any commercial or other privately available ground transportation options. U.S. citizens should not travel to Ukraine due to the active armed conflict and the singling out of U.S. citizens in Ukraine by Russian government security officials. All U.S. citizens should carefully monitor U.S. government notices and local and international media outlets for information about changing security conditions and alerts to shelter in place. Those remaining in Ukraine should exercise increased caution due to the potential for active combat, crime, and civil unrest. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

The security situation throughout Ukraine is highly volatile and conditions have deteriorated. U.S. citizens should remain vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. There are continued reports of U.S. citizens being singled out and detained by the Russian military in Ukraine and when evacuating by land through Russia-occupied territory or to Russia or Belarus. Know the location of your closest shelter or protected space. In the event of mortar or rocket fire, follow the instructions from local authorities and seek shelter immediately. If you feel your current location is no longer safe, you should carefully assess the potential risks involved in moving to a different location.

The U.S. Department of State suspended operations at U.S. Embassy Kyiv, effective February 28. All in-person consular services in Ukraine are suspended until further notice.

U.S. citizens seeking emergency assistance should email KyivACS@state.gov for assistance.   The U.S. government will not be able to evacuate U.S. citizens from Ukraine. Please review what the U.S. government can and cannot do to assist you in a crisis overseas. U.S. citizens may seek consular services, including requests for repatriation loans, passports, and visa services, at U.S. embassies and consulates in neighboring countries.

On February 24, the Ukrainian government declared a state of emergency. Each province (oblast) will decide on the measures to be implemented according to local conditions. Measures could include curfews, restrictions on the freedom of movement, ID verification, and increased security inspections, among other measures. Follow any state of emergency measures imposed in your oblast.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) prohibits U.S. civil aviation from flying in Ukrainian airspace. For more information, U.S. citizens should consult the Federal Aviation Administration’s Prohibitions, Restrictions and Notices. Additionally, since February 24, when Russia’s forces began attacking major Ukrainian cities, the State Aviation Administration of Ukraine, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, and the Federal Aviation Administration have prohibited flights into, out of, and over Ukraine due to ongoing military actions.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Ukraine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined Ukraine has an unknown level of COVID-19.  Visit the CDC page for the latest Travel Health Information related to your travel. 

Travel to High-Risk Areas

If you are not currently in Ukraine but choose to disregard the travel advisory not to enter Ukraine, you should consider taking the following steps prior to travel: 

  • Visit our website on Travel to High-Risk areas.
  • Draft a will and designate appropriate insurance beneficiaries and/or power of attorney.
  • Discuss a plan with loved ones regarding care/custody of children, pets, property, belongings, non-liquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral wishes, etc.
  • Share important documents, login information, and points of contact with loved ones so that they can manage your affairs if you are unable to return as planned to the United States. Leave DNA samples with your medical provider in case it is necessary for your family to access them. 
  • Establish your own personal security plan in coordination with your employer or host organization or consider consulting with a professional security organization.
  • Develop a communication plan with family and/or your employer or host organization so that they can monitor your safety and location as you travel through high-risk areas. This plan should specify who you would contact first, and how they should share the information. 
  • Enroll your trip in the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency. 
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist

If you are currently in Ukraine: 

Last Update: Reissued with updates to the security situation and health information

... [READ MORE]

Hague Convention Participation

Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
Yes
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
Yes

What You Can Do

Learn how to respond to abductions FROM the US
Learn how to respond to abductions TO the US

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Kyiv

4 A.I. Sikorsky St. (formerly Tankova)
04112 Kyiv, Ukraine

Telephone: +38 (044) 521-5000
Fax: +38 (044) 521-5544
Email: 

General Information

The Government of Ukraine notified The Hague, pursuant to Article 45 of the Convention, of its inability to guarantee fulfillment of Hague Abduction Convention obligations "to the full extent for the period of the armed aggression of the Russian Federation.

Ukraine and the United States have been treaty partners under the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention) since September 1, 2007.

For information concerning travel to Ukraine, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Ukraine.  

The U.S. Department of State reports statistics and compliance information for individual countries in the Annual Report on International Child Abduction. The report is located here.

Hague Abduction Convention

The U.S. Department of State serves as the U.S. Central Authority (USCA) for the Hague Abduction Convention. In this capacity, the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children's Issues facilitates the submission of applications under the Hague Abduction Convention for the return of, or access to, children located in countries that are U.S. treaty partners, including Ukraine. Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance prior to initiating the Hague process directly with the foreign Central Authority.

Contact information:

United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children's
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Telephone: 
1-888-407-4747
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
Website

The Ukrainian Central Authority for the Hague Abduction Convention is the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine. The Ministry of Justice takes measures to locate the child and taking parent; approaches local authorities to arrange a meeting to attempt a voluntary return of the child, if appropriate; and makes arrangements with the local children's welfare office (Custody and Care Office) to check the child's living conditions. The Ukrainian Central Authority can be reached at:

The Ukrainian Central Authority can be reached at:

Ministry of Justice of Ukraine
13, Horodetskogo Street
KYIV 01001
Ukraine
Email:
ilad@minjust.gov.ua or ilatu@minjust.gov.ua
Website
Tel.: +38 044 279 5674
Fax: +38 044 279 5674

To initiate a Hague case for return of, or access to, a child in Ukraine, the left-behind parent must submit a Hague application to the Ukrainian Central Authority. It is extremely important that each document written in English be translated into Ukrainian. Please note, however, that certified translations are not necessary. The USCA is available to answer questions about the Hague application process, to forward a completed application to the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine, and to subsequently monitor its progress through the foreign administrative and legal processes.

There are no fees for filing Hague applications with either the United States or Ukrainian central authorities. The Ukrainian Central Authority provides legal representation at no cost to left-behind parents; however, the parent or legal guardian who has submitted the application may hire a private attorney in Ukraine. A privately hired attorney should contact the Ukrainian Central Authority as soon as possible after the Hague Abduction Convention application has been filed with the Ukrainian Central Authority.

Additional costs may include airplane tickets for court appearances and for the return of the child, if so ordered.

Return

A parent or legal guardian may file an application under the Hague Abduction Convention for return to the United States of a child abducted to, or wrongfully retained in, Ukraine. The U.S. Department of State can assist parents living in the United States to understand whether the Convention is an available civil remedy and can provide information on the process for submitting a Hague application.

Visitation/Access

A person may file an application under the Hague Abduction Convention for access to a child living in Ukraine. The criteria for acceptance of a Hague access application vary from country to country. The U.S. Department of State can assist parents living in the United States to understand country-specific criteria and provide information on the process for submitting a Hague application.

Retaining an Attorney

In a Hague Abduction Convention case, it is not mandatory for a petitioner to retain a private attorney because the Ukrainian Central Authority provides legal representation at no cost to left-behind parents. However, the parent or legal guardian who has submitted the Hague application may hire a private attorney in Ukraine to follow up on the case and to provide information directly to the court. A privately hired attorney should contact the Ukrainian Central Authority as soon as possible after the Hague Abduction Convention application has been filed with the Ukrainian Central Authority.

Ukraine offers legal assistance to Ukrainian citizens who qualify.

The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine posts a list of attorneys including those who specialize in family law.  

This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney.The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.

Mediation

The Ukrainian Central Authority states that there are no governmental or non-governmental organizations that offer family mediation services in child custody disputes in Ukraine. Parties who wish to pursue mediation as an alternative to formal court proceedings will have to seek private resources.

Exercising Custody Rights

While travelling in a foreign country, you are subject to the laws of that country. It is important for parents to understand that, although a left-behind parent in the United States may have custody or visitation rights pursuant to a U.S. custody order, that order may not be valid and enforceable in the country in which the child is located.  For this reason, we strongly encourage you to speak to a local attorney if planning to remove a child from a foreign country without the consent of the other parent.  Attempts to remove your child to the United States may:

  • Endanger your child and others;
  • Prejudice any future judicial efforts; and
  • Could result in your arrest and imprisonment.

The U.S. government cannot interfere with another country’s court or law enforcement system.

To understand the legal effect of a U.S. order in a foreign country, a parent should consult with a local attorney in the country in which the child is located.  

For information about hiring an attorney abroad, see our section on Retaining a Foreign Attorney. 

Although we cannot recommend an attorney to you, most U.S. Embassies have lists of attorneys available online. Please visit the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate website for a full listing.

For more information on consular assistance for U.S. citizens arrested abroad, please see our website.

Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. 

 

Last Updated: October 23, 2018

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Kyiv
4 A.I. Sikorsky St. (formerly Tankova)
04112 Kyiv, Ukraine
Telephone
+38 (044) 521-5000
Emergency
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Fax
+38 (044) 521-5544

Ukraine Map