So, you’ve hit what feels like “rock bottom” and finally made the decision to seek residential addiction treatment. While you may feel confident in your decision, you may also feel anxious about informing your job you need to take time off from work to begin your healing. Fortunately, knowing the right steps to take a leave of absence from work will allow you to feel confident in your job security while gone and able to prioritize your focus on finding recovery.
1. Be Proactive About Letting Your Employer Know You Need a Leave of Absence
As you’re probably already aware of, addiction can completely destroy a person’s life and burn plenty of bridges on the way. Be proactive about putting in your request to take a leave of absence so as to not burn another bridge with your job and employers. The worst way to take a leave of absence is to ghost your work, especially if you’re looking to return to your job after you’ve completed treatment. If you can, let your employer or HR representative know you need to take a leave of absence in person, so they know you’re committed to returning.
2. Understand Your Rights For Treatment
According to the FMLA, or Family Medical Leave Act, you’re legally allowed to take up to 12 weeks off from work to seek addiction treatment, so don’t be pressured into returning to work as soon as possible. It takes time to begin to heal and build a foundation for a lasting recovery.
If you’re a union worker, give them a call before approaching your employer about taking a leave of absence, as they’ll not only inform you of your full rights, but your health insurance benefits to seeking addiction treatment as well. Addiction is considered a disability, so if you take the initiative to seek addiction treatment yourself (before substance abuse issues escalate to your work), you legally cannot be fired from your job. For more information about how a labor union can help you get addiction treatment, click HERE.
3. Paperwork for Short-Term Medical Leave
Review your job’s benefits before approaching your supervisor, to understand your rights and see if you’re eligible for paid short-term medical leave. What is short-term disability leave?
- Covers employees for up to 12 weeks.
- Continues employees’ health insurance benefits while taking a leave of absence.
- Useful for major, but relatively brief, disabilities such as addiction treatment
- Usually provides only partial income protection, most often 60 percent.
If you are eligible, you’ll need both a doctor and your work to fill out paperwork to get it approved. While you’re informing your employer about taking a leave of absence, you can ask for this paperwork and bring it with you to the addiction treatment facility, but if you don’t, no worries — Acqua Recovery will help you with anything paperwork or communication you need to make with your employer to take a leave of absence. Knowing this paperwork is taken care of, you’ll be able to focus on your healing at Acqua’s sanctuary.
Reach Out To Us Today
Acqua Recovery’s well-rounded, holistic addiction treatment program is specialized to fit your needs and your personal path to recovery. For more information about taking a leave of absence or having one of our caring admissions team members guide you through the process, give us a call today.