Work of Jurfem during the war - Jurfem

Work of Jurfem during the war

On 24th February 2022, russia in support of belarus, launched a major military offensive against Ukraine. Millions of Ukrainian –  men and women – suffered as a result of the aggression. In early March, the Ukrainian Women Lawyers Association “JurFem” began publishing open legal consultations on various issues. Each topic is important in its way for Ukrainian men and women in our time.

Currently, there are already 80 consultations and 15 webinars on the JurFem page, the relevance of which is increasing every day. The importance of these topics is that they apply to every sphere of our lives, especially during martial law. We published what and how to do in these and other cases in legal advice from JurFem.

Consultations and webinars

Because of the war, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians were forced to leave their homes and become internally displaced persons or seek protection abroad. To receive these statuses, you need to register or apply for refugee or IDP status. You can read more about these statuses in the legal consultations “Refugee and temporary protection” and “Internally displaced persons” and watch webinars by Maria Krasnenko on “Peculiarities of the stay of Ukrainians abroad: refugee and temporary protection” and by Evgenia Melesh on “IDPs: current changes in legislation”.

A lot of Ukrainians decide to leave the country, but is it always necessary to have a foreign passport? And if a valid period of the foreign passport has expired? How to cross the border for a spouse, an orphaned child, children deprived of parental care, or people from temporarily occupied territories. All these questions and more can be found in the legal advice “Crossing the border. Legal stay”, “Travel abroad of orphans, children deprived of parental care”, “Validity of foreign passport”, and “Border crossing for men”.

The International Labor Organization of the United Nations notes in its report that about 5 million Ukrainians have lost their jobs since the beginning of the war, but Ukrainians who have the opportunity to work during martial law work even in regions where hostilities are active. Working during the war requires the availability of safe conditions for work, which are stated in Article 45 of the Constitution of Ukraine, that everyone has the right to proper, safe, and healthy working conditions, to wages not lower than those determined by law.

You need to know your rights and responsibilities as an employer and an employee. When an employee does not show up for work due to active hostilities which take place in his region, the employer has no right to fire him. The employer does not pay wages due to objective impossibility – this is a reason for exemption from liability, but this does not cancel the obligation to pay employees wages in full at the first opportunity. 

In cases of job loss in the territory where hostilities continue, a person can officially receive the status of unemployed and receive benefits only by calling the “hotline” of the State and Regional Employment Center. If you are a doctor and because of the war you lost the opportunity to work at your main place of work, at medical institutions in other regions of Ukraine providing medical services to the population, then this issue is regulated by the order of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine dated 03.04.2022 No. 414 “On accounting and reporting of medical employees who provide medical care outside the main place of work during the period of martial law on the territory of Ukraine”. You can read about many other details related to employment in our consultations. 

Notaries and courts continue to work during the war, but with some special features. For example, notaries are prohibited from making executive inscriptions for credit agreements that are not notarized. Courts work as usual, but some categories of cases are prioritized for consideration. You can read more about work during martial law in the legal consultations: “Not showing up for work due to war”, “Employer does not pay wages”, “Status of unemployed during the war”, “Work during the war: questions and answers”, “Work courts under martial law”, “Work of notaries under martial law” and “Peculiarities of employment of medical workers – internally displaced persons during martial law”. 

The state and various international organizations continue to help Ukrainians affected by the war. The state continues to pay salaries, scholarships, subsidies, and social benefits to citizens of Ukraine. Humanitarian aid and additional money from the state continue to flow as much as possible under martial law. Ukrainians also have the opportunity to receive medical assistance during martial law. You can read about these important issues in our consultations “Humanitarian aid”, “The right to medical care during martial law”, “6500 UAH from the state”, “Scholarships for those seeking education during martial law”, “Subsidies in conditions of war: registration, extension”, “Pensions under martial law”, “Social benefits under martial law”, “The right to receive a survivor’s pension for relatives of missing persons” and you can find answers to all questions in these consultations.

Banks and loans continue to operate during the war. In connection with the imposition of martial law by the President of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, most Ukrainian banks announced a so-called “credit holiday” for three months, starting from March 1, 2022. But this does not apply to mortgages. Mortgage payments continue if the house is bombed. Since the loan did not go anywhere, the obligation to fulfill the loan to the bank remained unchanged. The loan will not go anywhere in cases of bankruptcy, occupation, or destruction, the borrower will still have to pay the loan until it is fully paid, and to whom to pay it is another matter.

Ukrainian men and women faced the task of defending the country, everyone took a role in this war and helped as well as they could. Mobilization began, and those who were not among those mobilized could defend the country in the ranks of territorial defense. Even suspects and accused persons can be released from custody for military service during mobilization. Persons, who are mobilized to protect the territorial integrity of Ukraine, must undergo a medical examination before mobilization. But not always everyone agrees with the medical opinion, and in this case, you can appeal the decision made by the commission based on the results of the medical examination. Mobilized Ukrainian men and women have their special duties and rights. The military and Teroborona also have labor rights and guarantees. The right to leave for family reasons and other rights is also included in the rights of the military. It is worth noting that all conscripted citizens of Ukraine bear criminal and/or administrative responsibility for evading conscription. During hostilities, evacuation, or in everyday circumstances, the identity card of a participant in hostilities can be lost or damaged, but it can be restored.

The question arose of providing civilians with weapons to protect their homes, families, and foremost, Ukraine. The obtained weapons can be used to repel and deter armed aggression by Russia and other states or against persons who carry out armed aggression against Ukraine. You can read these and other additional important questions in legal consultations from JurFem.

The Ministry of Health reported that during the first three months war, about 50,000 children were born in Ukraine and about 5,000 deaths were recorded among civilians, not counting military personnel. Not all deaths and births can be recorded during martial law. In places where hostilities are taking place, registration of the birth of a child or the death of a person is temporarily not carried out. Regarding the registration of marriage during the war, the procedure has not changed. However, there are exceptions for the military and employees of relevant institutions, that is, marriage can be concluded without their presence.

From the beginning of the war to the end of June, about 7,000 people were reported missing. If a person you know or is close to suddenly disappeared and stopped communicating during martial law, or you became aware of his or her stay in captivity, you must contact the police and file a report on missing citizens, their abduction, or capture. What to do if a loved one has disappeared? Who to call and where to call? You will find answers to all these questions in the legal consultation “Disappeared during the war”, “Recognition of a person as missing during the state of war” and “Appeal to the police regarding disappearance, abduction, being in captivity”.

The recording of violent crimes continues in larger forms during wartime. Sexual violence, sexual harassment and domestic violence are crimes that happen everywhere and all the time, but you need to know what to do if you have become a victim or a witness of such illegal actions. Where to turn? What to do if you are a victim of domestic violence? report to the police about disappearance, abduction, being in captivity”

How to get free legal aid? You will find everything in the consultations: “Sexual harassment”, “Fixation of sexual violence”, “Domestic violence” and “Responsibility for sexual violence”.

Only in the first three months of the war, more than 50,000 babies were born in Ukraine. The state continues to provide women with all medical services related to pregnancy and childbirth free of charge and without any reference to the woman’s place of registration or previous stay under escort at another doctor or institution. Also, the state continues to assist not only citizens of Ukraine at the birth of a child, but also foreigners and stateless persons under special conditions by providing a “Baby Package” for each newborn child. You can read about these and other common issues in JurFem’s legal advice: “Pregnancy and childbirth during wartime” and “Baby package”.

Some parents cannot currently find a safe place to give birth to a child in Ukraine, so they choose places outside of Ukraine because of the invasion of Russia and for other reasons for themselves. Ukrainian women who want to give birth abroad or due to hostilities on the territory of Ukraine have the right to take sick leave while abroad. The procedure for obtaining sick leave abroad for pregnant women has become much easier due to the war in Ukraine. If a Ukrainian woman decided to give birth abroad, then a child born abroad, one of whose parents has Ukrainian citizenship, is automatically a citizen of Ukraine. You can read about it in JurFem’s legal advice: “Citizenship of a child born abroad“, “Hospitals for pregnant women during the war.”

More than 2,000 children were orphaned during the war. Unfortunately, such children cannot be adopted/adopted during the war in Ukraine or abroad. Such a ban is effective due to a complex judicial procedure, which is impossible under martial law. You can read about this issue in the legal consultation: “Adoption during martial law”.

If you have lost your identity documents or your passport has expired, you should contact the territorial authorities and territorial divisions of the State Migration Service. The validity period of the passport is extended, but if you issued it, you can renew the documents, but such a list of documents is exhaustive. You can read about this in JurFem’s legal advice on the loss of identity documents.

State registration during martial law is limited, it has its characteristics and registers only an exhaustive list of legal entities, individual entrepreneurs, and public organizations. You can read more in detail in the legal advice from JurFem: “State registration during martial law”

Armed conflict, military aggression, general military mobilization, military operations and declared war belong to force majeure circumstances, i.e. circumstances of irresistible force. On February 28, 2022, a letter was published on the official website of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Ukraine, which recognized the military aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine as a force majeure circumstance (circumstance of irresistible force). Fulfillment of an obligation during force majeure becomes impossible, therefore the legislation exempts from liability for breach of such an obligation, but not from the fulfillment of the obligation in general. You can ask about this in a legal consultation from JurFem “Execution of obligations during force majeure”.

Martial law brought significant changes in the lives of each of us. In JurFem’s legal consultation on restrictions during martial law, you can learn about the concept of martial law, when it can end, who imposes it, and what is prohibited during this state.

The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine adopted Resolution No. 209 dated March 6, amending Resolution No. 164 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine dated February 28, 2022, to citizens and legal entities of Russia. The resolution stipulates that if a citizen of Russia applies for a notary certificate, it must be a legal entity created and registered under the laws of the Russian Federation, or a legal entity created and registered under the laws of the Russian Federation. In Ukraine, where the ultimate beneficial owner, participant or participant (shareholder) is 10 percent or more of the authorized capital, is a citizen of the Russian Federation or a legal entity created and registered by the legislation of the Russian Federation, notaries refuse to issue a notarial certificate. You can read about this in detail in the legal consultation on the execution of a will during martial law.

According to the above-mentioned resolution, it is determined that the adoption of the inheritance period is suspended for the period of martial law. The heir does not need to contact a notary within 6 months from the date of inheritance (death of the testator). They will be able to accept the inheritance and resolve other formal issues after the end of martial law. You can also read about the acceptance of inheritance under martial law in legal consultations.

Martial law is not an obstacle to divorce because marital relations are based on consent. Therefore, despite martial law, the right to terminate marriage cannot be limited. At the same time, the divorce process in wartime has certain peculiarities, taking into account the consequences of such a system in the country. You can find out more about divorce in legal consultation from JurFem.

During the period of martial law in the territories where hostilities were not carried out, the leased property is in good condition, all communications are provided with working conditions, and the tenant is obliged to pay the rent for the apartment in the usual manner, according to the lease agreement or verbal agreement with the landlord. Under martial law, Ukrainians are not exempt from paying utility bills and bank payments. At the same time, during the war, if it was not possible to pay fines and penalties, it was canceled. However, after the end of hostilities, the debt will have to be returned. You can read about this in more detail in the right consultations: “Renting housing during martial law” and “Paying utility bills during martial law”.

On March 15, 2022, Ukraine adopted the Law on Labor Relations during Martial Law, which clarifies the issue of vacations during martial law. During martial law, employers may deny employees any leave other than maternity and parental leave if they work at critical infrastructure sites. You can learn more about vacations in the consultations: “Features of vacation without saving wages” and “Annual vacation.”

On April 13, several laws of Ukraine “On Amendments to the Exemption of Certain Categories of Ukrainian Citizens from Military Service” entered into force, which, during the period of martial law, may be removed from military service due to family circumstances and for other valid reasons, in particular, spouses undergoing military service and have children under the age of 18 – you can read about this in the right consultation from JurFem “Both parents are military”.

In the conditions of martial law, to protect the national interests of the country, an individual or a legal entity may forcibly terminate the right of ownership of its property and transfer it to the ownership of the state. The state allocates: forcibly alienated property and seized property. You can read about this in “Forcible alienation and forced seizure of property under martial law” and “Forcible seizure of property of the Russian Federation”

During the hostilities in Ukraine, many lives were tragically cut short, and the residents of the surrounding area did not know how to act correctly in this situation. Each of us can witness the death of civilians or military personnel and in such cases know the entire algorithm of actions, and what to do. You can read about this in one of Jurfem’s legal consultations.

From October 1, 2021, all medical institutions of Ukraine will switch to issuing electronic sick leave – sick leave. Currently, patients go to work without paper sick leave, simply notifying the employer of a temporary absence. Procedure for separate issuance of sick leave, accrual and payment of material support The Law of Ukraine “On General Mandatory Social Insurance” does not provide for temporary loss of working capacity in the event of martial law. You can get acquainted with this in one of the legal consultations from Jurfem.


Russian war against Ukraine has changed the lives of every Ukrainian man and woman. Each of us has a story of this war that is worth hearing. We offer you the stories of the members of Ukrainian Women Lawyers Association “JurFem” – lawyers, teachers and other representatives of the legal sphere, who today – each in her place – defend our legal “front”. That is why we have launched the column Ukrainian women-lawyers and the war“. Our 10 interviews depict how Russia’s war against Ukraine is changing professional activities and life in general.

In addition, the JurFem counseling center  “JurFem: support” has been operating since April. It provides free and confidential legal assistance and supports to victims of sexual violence and various forms of discrimination, especially as a result of war.

Also, you can see the results of the work of the Jurfem Analytical Center for the first quarter here.

More about JurFem webinars – here.