Can I Use Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) to Go to Rehab in New Jersey?

a guide to using FMLA for drug rehab

Effective treatment can help people recover from addiction and move forward into a healthy, sober lifestyle. High-quality addiction treatment programs are available in every state and in most cities. Even with widely available treatment, most people with addiction do not get the treatment they need. 

People have many reasons for not going to rehab when they need to. They may be in denial about their addiction or might worry about how others will perceive them. Many people are concerned that if they take time away from work, their employer will fire them. This fear of getting fired for going to rehab keeps them from getting the help they need. Fortunately, you may be able to use the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to go to rehab in New Jersey.

While many assume that people living with addiction are unable to work, most people who abuse substances are employed. Workplace substance abuse contributes to problems like unanticipated absences, workplace accidents, and interpersonal difficulties. When an employee seeks addiction treatment, the choice should be celebrated. 

To learn more about using FMLA for addiction treatment or to hear about our holistic programs, reach out to the staff at Moving Mountains Recovery. 

Can I Use FMLA for Addiction Treatment?

In 1993, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was passed to protect workers from losing their job while going through treatment for medical conditions. The law also protects people’s health insurance by prohibiting their employers from terminating their coverage while they undergo treatment. 

Under FMLA, workers are allowed to take a leave of absence to receive addiction treatment without fear of losing their job. According to the Department of Labor, employees are allowed to take up to 12 weeks away from work to receive treatment. Employees must meet certain conditions, including:

  • They must have worked for the company for 12 consecutive months
  • During the 12 months of employment, they must have worked a minimum of 1,250 hours
  • The company must have at least 50 employees within 75 miles of their location

If an employee meets these requirements, they can use FMLA for rehab without risking their employment.

When you return to work, your employer is required to offer you the same job or one at the same rate of pay. While your employment is protected during your leave of absence, your employer will likely not pay you during this time. 

Types of Addiction Treatment Covered by FMLA

To qualify to use FMLA for addiction treatment, people must attend an evidence-based treatment program at a licensed facility. Addiction treatment is available in many settings and levels of care, including:

The type of treatment and length of the program a person needs depends on the severity of their addiction, their treatment history, and other factors. Generally, people are entitled to use FMLA to attend any type of treatment program at any level of care that is recommended by a medical or addiction professional.

Steps to Take to Use FMLA for Drug Rehab

There are a few steps you can take to use FMLA for addiction treatment that will help the process go smoothly. 

  1. Get a diagnosis: Having a formal diagnosis will help you when using FMLA for rehab. Your medical professional or addiction specialist will diagnose you and help determine your appropriate level of care. 
  2. Talk to your employer or Human Resources representative: If you intend to take a leave of absence to seek treatment, speak to your employer about it as soon as possible. 
  3. Communicate: Talk to your employer about progress, changes to your treatment plan, and possible return dates as soon as you have that information. Staying in touch with your employer will make it easier for you to return to work when the time comes.

Your recovery should be your first priority. Taking the right steps when taking your leave of absence will help you avoid unexpected stress or surprises so that you can stay focused on healing.

Learn More About Holistic Addiction Treatment at Moving Mountains Recovery

If you or someone you love requires addiction treatment, reach out to the staff at Moving Mountains Recovery for information about our holistic programs. We support people who need treatment and those in all stages of addiction recovery. 

Our staff will work with you to verify your insurance and help you manage your leave of absence, if necessary. We make it as easy as possible for you to get started on the treatment you need so that you can focus on what matters the most: your recovery. 

If you have been waiting to get the treatment you need, don’t wait another day. Call to speak with one of our admissions counselors about starting a holistic, life-changing addiction treatment program today. 

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