How to Apply for Medical Leave

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Getting medical leave isn’t that difficult! Knowing your rights is the most important factor in making a request . We have everything you need here !

Applying for medical leave isn’t something that you do every day. You usually only use it when you need to. According to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), you can apply for medical leave if you are unable to work because of your own serious health condition or because you need to care for another person in your family who needs care and attention.

The FMLA provides unpaid, job-protected leave that can be taken all at once or may be taken intermittently as the condition you are in or the person you are caring for requires. Of course, there are some criteria to be eligible for medical leave. Once you find that you cover the following requirements you may be eligible to take up to 12 weeks of job-protected time off under the FMLA:

  • You must work for a covered employer (usually private employers with at least 50 employees).
  • You must have worked for your employer for at least 12 months.
  • You must have worked for your employers for at least 1250 hours in the 12 months before you take leave.
  • You must work at a location where the employer has at least 50 workers within 75 miles of your worksite.


Usually, the most common serious health conditions covered by the FMLA leave are:

  • Conditions that require an overnight stay in a hospital or other medical care facility.
  • Conditions that incapacitate you or your family member for more than three consecutive days and require ongoing medical treatment.
  • Chronic conditions that cause occasional periods when you or your family member are incapacitated and require treatment by a health care provider at least twice a year.
  • Pregnancy (including prenatal medical appointments and medically required bed rest).

If you or a person in your family have a serious health condition that requires you to leave work for a period of time, you can apply for medical leave by sending a sick leave letter to your employer explaining the situation. Depending on the medical condition, your letter should say why you are required to do this and for how long.

Here are a couple of sick leave email samples from Business - LovetoKnow that can help you complete your application:

1. Medical Leave for Surgery

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When applying for medical leave for surgery, you need to tell your employer when you are planning to be away from work. Being clear about it will help you and your employer find a quick solution so that in your absence your post can easily be covered by another colleague if need be.

Mr./Mr. Last Name:

I am writing to you to submit a formal request for a medical leave of absence due to my own serious health condition that requires surgery. My doctor has scheduled a surgical procedure for (insert date) and expects that I will need (insert number) of weeks for recovery before being released to return to work. My physician will be happy to provide a formal medical certification document on my behalf.

Please let me know the next steps I should take to secure approval for this request. Thank you in advance for your consideration.

Sincerely,
[Your signature]
Your typed name

2. Medical Leave for Serious Illness

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If you are trying to explain a serious illness, you need to state your condition so that employers know what they are dealing with. It’s important to provide this kind of information because it helps them understand the reason you need to be away from work. As you can see this sample first talks about the condition and then explains how long you need to be absent.

Mr/Mrs. Last Name,

I am writing to you to formally request a medical leave of absence due to a serious health condition that I have been diagnosed with. Due to my illness, my physician has advised me to seek medical leave from work immediately and expects that I will be unable to return to work for [Insert Number] weeks or longer, depending on my response to treatment and recovery progress. I will be happy to have my doctor submit a medical certification form to verify the need for leave.

Please let me know what additional information is needed to process this request. I greatly appreciate your assistance with this important matter.

Sincerely,
[Your signature]
Your typed name

3. Applying for Intermittent Medical Leave

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In case you need to leave work at some periods over the course of the year, you also need to explain this clearly in your medical leave letter. This sample letter works as an example to show you how you can get permission to be absent from work when needs be.

Mr/Mrs. Last Name,

I am writing to you to submit a formal request for approval for intermittent medical leave as a result of being diagnosed with (insert condition). While this illness does not require me to need an extended leave of absence, there may be times when I am unable to work due to this condition. My physician can provide you with a medical certification documenting this serious medical condition and possible intermittent leave needs associated with it.

Please let me know what steps I should complete next to move forward with my request. Your assistance with this important matter is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
[Your signature]
Your typed name

See Also: How to Ask Your Boss For Holiday Leave

It’s important to know your rights. If you know what you are entitled to, you can request medical leave by sending your letter to your employer and explaining why there are times you need to be away. As far as it concerns your health or a member of your family’s health, your employer should be able to understand the importance of the situation.

Have you ever applied for medical leave? What happened? Let me know in the comments section below…