Due to recent legislative changes that effectively outlaw same-sex adoptions, define marriage as a heterosexual partnership, and limit legal gender recognition for transgender and intersex people, Hungary is one of the EU’s most restrictive countries for LGBT+ people. Nevertheless, the country offers temporary protection support for Ukrainians fleeing the war with extensive assistance in short-term and long-term accommodation, health care, education, and financial benefits. You can also opt for the Hungarian temporary residence permit to collect necessary documents on your way to another EU country.
According to the EU Temporary Protection Directive, Hungary has granted temporary protection to those displaced from Ukraine as a result of the country's crisis.
All Ukrainian Citizens and people who were living in Ukraine as recognized refugees, as well as their family members, can apply for this status at any of the “collection points” near the border, open 24/7. The application may also be submitted to the National Directorate-General for Aliens Policing (Országos Idegenrendészeti Főigazgatóság, OIF), at any of their customer service offices, during business hours.
In Budapest, petitions may only be submitted at the OIF office at Harmat utca 131 (District 10), any day of the week between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. The application need not be written ahead of time: you will receive a form to fill in at the OIF office. Addresses of the OIF offices and customer service offices in other cities.
One of two statuses is provided:
- Temporary protection, also called "Asylum status" in Hungary. It is provided even if you did not travel to Hungary from Ukraine directly, but passed through another country. It is valid until March 4th, 2023. You must prove that you lived in Ukraine before February 24th, 2022. Under the Temporary Protection status, you are entitled to housing, care, medical care, and other benefits, and you can work in Hungary or take part in public service under favorable conditions.
- Temporary residence permit (short-term residence permit), which is initially valid for 1 month, but can be extended for up to 3 months. Usually, this permit is necessary if you need to register missing documents at the consulate for further movement within the EU.
The Temporary Protection Card is a document confirming the status of Temporary Protection. To obtain it, you can apply in person at the immigration office or fill in an electronic form, but you will still need to go to the office in person to submit biometrics (fingerprints, digital photo). A Temporary Protection Card is issued 45 days after the application is submitted.
During the process, you are eligible to be accommodated in a reception centre (refugee camp), provided with food and medical services. If you can provide accommodation for yourself (stay with a relative, friend, or be offered accommodation by a humanitarian NGO), you don’t have to go to a reception centre.
People who have been granted temporary protection (asylum status) are entitled to:
- an identity document
- residence permit (indicating the place of residence)
- work without a work permit
- health care (accessible services defined by law)
- free Hungarian language courses (520 lessons)
- a monthly allowance
- the same right for children of school age to attend school as for Hungarian children
- children of people under temporary protection may attend kindergarten or nursery
You have the right to receive 22,800 HUF per month as financial support. Children receive 13,700 HUF a month. Let the OIF know if you require this support.
You are no longer entitled to the monthly subsistence support if you take a job or receive a pension.
Ukrainian citizens have a right to free emergency care and may receive prescriptions for necessary medicines and medications.
Immediately after applying for temporary protection status, you are entitled to the same medical care as a resident of Hungary who has a medical card. This means that you can count on the state to pay for your basic medical services, tests, x-rays, ultrasounds, obstetrics, outpatient and inpatient care. You can also have access to dental care. Complicated and expensive services, such as dental prosthetics, will have to be paid for by yourself.
Temporary protection status entitles you to the following health care services free of charge (unless you are covered by Social Security):
- first aid;
- specialised medical care or inpatient care in cases of urgent need;
- prenatal care, obstetric care;
- public health services;
- care for cancer patients and other types of care for chronic patients;
- emergency dental care and orthodontic treatment (aimed at saving teeth).
You will receive medical assistance in any competent health care institution with territorial responsibility.
A free Emergency Hotline has been established to provide care for children coming from Ukraine as soon as possible. The hotline is available 24/7 and provides support in all areas related to child welfare (medical care, hospital admission, consulting, COVID-19, mandatory vaccinations, etc.). Hotline: +36 80-200-223
In case of emergencies, contact the Ambulance of Heim Pal's Children Hospital Google Maps
Dedicated specialists help children cope with the stress of leaving their home, loss or grief at the Heim Pál National Childcare Institute's Psychology Crisis Ambulance. Contact the Children's Psychology Crisis Ambulance at +36 30 44 34 751.
Free psychology aid and consultation (available in Ukrainian, Russian, and English).
Diabetes hotline: +36 30 311 4977
The National Organisation for Autistic People is happy to help people with special needs: +36 1 354 1073.
There are challenges for trans people across all aspects of the healthcare system. Specific trans-inclusive state healthcare does not exist, but there are private options for trans people who need to access hormones or gender-affirming surgery. HIV-positive people also face difficulties in the healthcare system, and most LGBTQ+ people hide their identities in healthcare settings because it is not explicitly included. Medical professionals typically do not receive any specific LGBTQ+ training.
By obtaining temporary protection, Ukrainians are entitled to accommodation, health care, financial support, and education in a reception centre for the entire duration of the protection period. Ukrainians who stay either with friends, family members or in accommodation facilities offered by other individuals are not obliged to stay at the centre; however, they will receive reduced financial support.
Here is a live map of volunteers providing free housing: LIVE MAP
Find shelter: https://shelterukr.com/
Ingatlan.com offers a selection of long-term rentals that have been specifically offered for people who had to leave Ukraine. Listings with a monthly price of 1000 Ft are available for free, provided the tenant pay for the utilities. List of properties
Szallas.hu has created a list of accommodations from their partners who provide safe housing for refugees. See more »
EL*C has created a lesbian hosting network of individuals who made their flats and spare rooms available to Ukrainian refugees. Please notice that EL*C can provide you with a temporary solution (up to a few months). Contact the relocation team at: +48 571 944 400 and firstname.lastname@example.org
The Civil Coalition for Children's Rights has created a document to help Ukrainian children and their families navigate Hungarian child-related laws and regulations. Read more »
Kindergarten attendance is mandatory in Hungary for children between 3-6, namely in the kindergarten allocated to their permanent residence. Information about residential kindergartens can be found at the local government offices.
Schools and mandatory education
School is mandatory for children between 6-16, either in public schools ran by the government or other institutions. Refugees and people fleeing from Ukraine have the same right to education as Hungarian children. For more information about schools and availability, contact the education board for your area.
Suhanj! Foundation provides free day-care services for children of refugee families. They accept children with disabilities as well.
The Sugár Playhouse provides free entry to children who fled Ukraine and their parents.
Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design is opening its campus and dorms to refugees and providing students of art and design with scholarships, courses, and grants. Read more »
Ukrainian refugees can access all kinds of jobs in Hungary, even if they do not have a work permit.
Moreover, the government set a requirement for employers who want to recruit a Ukrainian worker: refugees must be provided with accommodation at the cost of the employer - the government covers 50% of these expenses but not more than 60 thousand HUF.
You should speak at least English to work in Hungary. It is highly recommended to be proficient in Hungarian as well.
The state offers all applicants for temporary protection 520 hours of Hungarian language courses to facilitate adaptation to the environment, and assistance in finding a job (from the migration service, which will provide you temporary protection).
Sexual acts between people of the same sex are legal and there is an equal age of consent of 14 years. Same-sex marriage is not legal. Same-sex relationships can be recognised by law as civil unions or registered partnerships under the Act on Civil Unions.
Same-sex couples have no legal right to adopt children. Although same-sex couples cannot adopt jointly, adoption by individuals is illegal regardless of sexual orientation or partnership status. Stepchild adoption is only available for married (different-sex) couples.
Access to IVF and donor insemination is available for single women regardless of sexual orientation, but not available for lesbians cohabiting or in a registered partnership with their same-sex partners.
Trans people cannot marry within their gender identity, as they cannot legally change their gender.
In 2020 Hungary banned the right to legally change one's gender. Trans people cannot change their legal gender on identification documents or birth certificates. Trans people cannot change their legal name. A change of legal name is restricted to marriage or a name that is considered to match the gender assigned at birth. There is no legal gender marker option other than "male" or "female".
Labrisz Lesbian Association
Postal address: 1136 Budapest, Balzac u. 8-10. fszt. 1
In Hungary, the advocacy group Transvanilla Transgender Association has been arranging accommodations, transportation, and food for trans and gender non-conforming people who make it into the country.
Háttér Society is the largest and oldest LGBTQI organisation currently operating in Hungary.
1136 Budapest, Balzac u. 8-10., Hungary
Phone: +36 1 238 0046, +36 1 329 2670
Fax: +36 1 799 8418
BUDAPEST PRIDE provides: safe accommodation for the short-mid term; helping with transport from the Ukrainian-Hungarian border to Budapest; helping with moving on to other European countries if needed; free pro-LGBTQ psychological counselling in English; community places for LGBTQ refugees to meet and spend time; free meals, contacts to pro-LGBTQ legal aid, medical services and technical supplies (power banks, SIM cards, chargers, etc.)
Szeszgyár, an eco-feminist community space that welcomes everyone, especially LGBTQ refugees who seek a safe place, on weekdays from 2PM - 9PM. There you can grab a bite and just be together in a safe and supportive environment.
Hungary has opened borders to unvaccinated and undocumented pets. Hungarian authorities will also provide rabies vaccination and microchipping to dogs, cats, and ferrets entering with refugees.
More information here.
Many veterinary offices help arrange vaccination and paperwork for animals joining their people from Ukraine. The mandatory rabies vaccination and the microchip is free for people having a Ukrainian passport.