Addiction Recovery - Treatment Professional - Relapse Prevention

Sick Time: Will I Still Get Paid While I'm in Drug Rehab?

Sick Time: Will I Still Get Paid While I'm in Drug Rehab?

You may be able to continue to draw a salary during your time in drug rehab. The Edge Treatment Center will help you explore every option you have.

Written by

brian-mooreBrian Moore

Content Writer

Reviewed by

jeremy-arztJeremy Arzt

Chief Clinical Officer

Addiction Recovery

Treatment Professional

Relapse Prevention

July 22, 2022

Requesting or taking time off from your job to attend drug rehab can be scary. You may be worried about things such as whether you can get paid time off or if taking this very necessary time away will get you fired altogether.

Thankfully, there are a few options available to you. There are options you can take advantage of to ensure the safety of your job but also potentially continue to get paid as well. 

Understand Your Employer's Policies

Laws and regulations are in place to protect individuals like you who need time off for medical reasons. The best place to start is to check your employee handbook to see what policies your employer already has in place for these situations. The employee handbook should address topics such as their medical leave protocols.

If you are not able to locate an employee handbook or any documentation of how to handle this situation, your next step is to get in contact with human resources. Ask them about your company's specific policies and have them help you check whether you are eligible for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). 

The FMLA provides you with job protection while you are in rehab for up to 12 weeks. Unfortunately, this time off from work is unpaid, though you are guaranteed to return to the same or comparable position when you return to work. It is important to note that if you take time off under the FMLA but do not attend a rehab program, your job is no longer protected. 

To qualify for protection under the FMLA: 

  • You must have worked for your employer for at least 12 months, completing at least 1,250 hours of work during that time

  • Your employer must employ 50 or more individuals within a 75-mile radius

Other Options Available to You 

If you or your employer do not meet the eligibility requirements for the FMLA, there are still options. For example, if you have paid vacation time accrued at your job, you can use this time for rehab and still get paid. This might not be the most ideal option, but it does also mean you would not have to tell your boss or co-workers you’re attending drug rehab. 

One other option that can help you still get paid while going to a drug rehab center would be to see if your employer offers any long-term or short-term disability options. This way, you can still have some income while you’re in drug rehab.

Life can get in the way of attending rehab, especially if you cannot continue to earn an income during this time. However, if the choice is between making an income now and potentially encountering a situation where your substance use habits put your job at risk or taking time off to get help and ensure the safety of your job, getting rehab is always the better option.

Your job performance may even improve after you have successfully completed treatment.

Outpatient Treatment Options

If you are feeling uncomfortable with going the route of inpatient treatment and sacrificing a few months' worth of income, an outpatient drug rehab program may be right for you. Outpatient programs are much more flexible and can be fit around a work schedule.

The Edge Treatment Center understands you have daily responsibilities to take care of outside of treatment, which is why we place such an emphasis on flexibility and accessibility. In our outpatient program, you can choose when you come in, which makes it possible for you to complete your required treatment hours after the work day.

Preparing Your Life for Drug Treatment

After you have decided which route to take for treatment, it is important to think about how you can prepare yourself and your home for the time you may be spending in drug rehab.

For example, if you have decided on inpatient treatment, you may need to set your bills on automatic payments or find someone to care for a pet. You should also remove any substances, paraphernalia, or things that might trigger you to use or drink again so you can come home to a clean and sober environment.


In the end, whichever route you take will always benefit you in the long run because you are choosing self-improvement. You cannot continue to take care of yourself, others, or work-related tasks if you don't start to pour into your own cup.

Taking this leap and receiving drug treatment for your substance use disorder is one of the bravest decisions you can make. It is important to remember you are not alone. Our staff at The Edge is always here for support to ensure you have a successful treatment journey and a long, healthy life in recovery. 

The Edge Treatment Center Is Your Partner During Drug Rehab

Continuing to bring in an income is possible while receiving drug or alcohol treatment. Choosing to attend drug rehab, whether it be an inpatient, outpatient, or telehealth option is one of the best investments for your future you can make.

The Edge Treatment Center is here to help guide you on the next steps and assuage any potential concerns you might have. We offer personalized treatment plans to fit your needs along with an emphasis on creating community relationships.

If you’d like to know more about how The Edge Treatment Center can work with your work schedule, please contact our team today.

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