A Medical Leave of Absence means a kind of leave requested by an employee on the basis that the health condition of the employee, whether physical or mental, is in such a state that they are unable to perform their job responsibilities. The eligibility for any leave of absence is subject to company policies and will require some formalities as per the company policies.
A leave of absence is an understanding between an employer or employee where the employee is authorized to take time off from work for an extended period. Depending on the situation, the leave of absence can be compensated, unpaid, mandatory, or optional.
What are the Conditions that Qualify for Medical Leave of Absence?
The conditions for which an individual may be eligible for this leave category are determined by the FMLA or Family and Medical Leave Act and the ADA or Americans with Disabilities Act. Employees that are certified by healthcare professionals to be suffering mentally or physically are eligible for this leave. Also, the employer may offer policies of Mandatory & Voluntary leaves, under which the policies for Medical Leave of Absence are present.
An employer may occasionally request an employee's certification supporting their need for FMLA leave. The certification is a paper or forms the worker must fill out and, if necessary, a medical professional.
What is the Length of Medical Leave of Absence? Pair or Unpaid?
According to the FMLA and Wage and Hour Division Department of Labor of the US Government, employers are to provide employees a leave of up to 12 weeks for medical purposes mentioned and outlined in the Act. An employee can take this leave over a period of 12 months.
Mental Health Condition and Medical Leave of Absence
An employee who cannot work and is on leave due to mental illness is eligible for a Mental Health Leave of Absence. An employee may be less productive or unable to work due to various conditions like PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, or Anxiety. Such conditions will make it hard for employees to work on personal projects, collaborate in teams, or even affect their physical condition.
How to Avail Medical Leave of Absence Due to Mental Health Issues?
To avail MLAs, the following steps are to be taken:
Start counseling with a mental health care provider.
Determine whether you are eligible according to the FMLA.
Make an appointment with the relevant human resource department personnel and discuss all the available options for the leave.
Determine the steps to recovery and the overall plan for improving mental health with the mental health care provider.
Submit the necessary documents to your employer and specify how you want to take your leave.
An employer may ask an employee to submit a healthcare provider certification to validate the employee's necessity of the FMLA absence. The certification must contain adequate evidence to establish the need for leave but doesn't necessarily need to contain diagnosis information. Employers are required under the FMLA to keep employee medical records secret and separate from more normal personnel files. According to the ADA, GINA, or Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, employers must also maintain confidentiality.