During the declared migration emergency, in case of illegal entry to the territory of the Republic of Lithuania the foreigner can be detained for 6 months, regardless of whether the application for international protection has been submited. If the circumstances indicating the threat of illegal migration can be established, measures alternative to detention can be further imposed. These measure prescribed by the law include accommodation at the foreigners registration camps with or without restriction of movement, supervision of a person permanently residing in Lithuania, or at least the regular reporting of the place of residence of such foreigner to the State Border Guards Service.
Such restrictions however should not be imposed beyond 18 months from the day of entry. In ReLex case A-3944-822-2022, the Supreme Administrative Court confirmed that the alternative measures shall have same time limits as the detention itself, whether they amount to de facto detention or not. These would include even the lightest alternative measures, such as regularly informing the authorities about the whereabouts of the foreigner by email or phone.
In a surprise move to overturn this established court practice State Border Guards Service requested a further extension of registration and obtained such sanction by Vilnius regional court based on the need to control the movement of foreigners illegally present in the territory of Lithuania. However, by its recent decision A-1290-624/2023 Supreme Administrative Court overturned such decision. The court rejected grounds of the defendant relating to the implementation of the EU Return directive 2008/115/EC and upheld the foreigner’s arguments that the maximum term of 18 months for any of the control measures is clearly established in the Law of Legal Status of the Foreigners.
Konstitucijos pr. 7, Vilnius LT-09308