How to Get a Doctor's Note for Work (Templates)

Here's how to get a doctor's note for work. If you cannot work due to a sickness or accident, you may require a doctor's letter to present to your employer. A doctor's note for work often describes the recuperation timeframe and the medical need for being absent from work. Every employer has its own set of laws and criteria for when employees must give a doctor's letter, and it's critical to know when this can apply to you.

doctors note for work

What does a doctor's note entail?

A doctor's note is a written document from a certified healthcare professional that provides essential information regarding a medical condition, such as an illness or accident. The letter may completely exclude the patient from work or specify specific responsibilities they cannot perform due to their medical condition. This legal document might state that a patient was seen in the office for a lawful medical reason without revealing any patient's condition.

doctors note for work

Even though such a letter generally gets referred to as a doctor's note, workers can create it in a medical office or hospital. It usually contains the day and time you saw a healthcare expert, any indicated or required constraints, and whether or not you needed to take time off work. If you need to change your tasks or skip many shifts or days of work, the limits and absence requirements are incredibly crucial.

doctors note for work

What is the best time to acquire a doctor's letter for work?

Your employer's policies determine the requirement for a doctor's letter for employment. Some businesses demand a doctor's letter if an employee misses an hour of work, while others only require a note if an employee misses a week or more of work. Another element to consider is where you reside. When employees cannot work, state and municipal labor regulations may compel them to present evidence from their healthcare providers.

If you become ill or injured during your workday and need to make a doctor's visit, check with your HR department to see if a doctor's note is required. Find out what the doctor needs to mention in the note when you meet with the HR person. You can provide this information to your healthcare physician to get a suitable note. Getting a note during your visit is often faster and more convenient, so knowing ahead of time can help you receive what you need to follow company policy.

doctors note for work

Disability accommodations and extended medical leave

Extended medical leave may get required for those who have injuries that necessitate unique accommodations or long durations of absence. For example, if you need surgery that will take many weeks to recuperate from, you may be able to take advantage of the Family and Medical Leave Act's benefits (FMLA). The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) may also include special accommodations.

People who fulfill specific illness or injury requirements can take up to 12 workweeks off during a year under the FMLA. The workweeks can get taken in any order, and you are not required to complete them all at once. Employers with at least 50 workers are required to offer this benefit to employees who have worked at least 1,250 hours in the previous 12 months and have been with the company for at least 12 months. The time an employee takes off is unpaid under the FMLA, but they may be eligible for short-term or long-term disability payments.

doctors note for work

The following are examples of qualifying FMLA situations:

doctors note for work

  • When it comes to caring for an adopted kid or a foster child.
  • When it comes to giving birth and caring for a newborn.
  • When you're unable to work due to a significant illness.
  • When caring for a close relative with a significant health condition, such as a parent, kid, or spouse.
  • When a family member is on active military duty, an emergency arises.

Injury note from a doctor

Most employers regard an injury that limits your capacity to do your job reasonably to be a good cause for taking sick leave. Supervisors like it when their staff work effectively rather than dragging out an injury and working below capacity the entire time.

doctors note for work

Note from a doctor for a medical appointment

You may be able to utilize sick days to go to doctor's visits if your job allows it. This healthy practice can help you keep your health and lower the chances of you having sick leave in the future.

doctors note for work

Doctor's note for a medical condition

If you have any pre-existing medical issues, make sure to inform the human resources department when you start a new work. Provide your employer with necessary paperwork from a medical professional if you require frequent appointments for scheduled rest time.

Hospitalization note from a doctor

You can utilize sick days to cover your absences if your illness necessitates hospitalization or medical treatment. Consult your human resources department about your extended leave alternatives.

Pregnancy or delivery doctor's note

The Family and Medical Leave Act typically covers pregnancy and birth, providing coverage for days lost at work due to pregnancy-related causes. Your employer's coverage may cover prenatal care and paternity leave.

Note from a doctor for remote work

You may be able to submit a doctor's letter to your employer if you have a medical condition that raises your risk of severe sickness and need to request an accommodation to continue working remotely. See your company's policies or speak with your HR representative to learn more.

doctors note for work

Doctor's notes and extended medical leave

If you are out of work for more than a week, you will typically need to supply your employer with an official doctor's letter. You will be protected under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) while on leave if you have a letter.

You should be aware that the doctor is not permitted to specify your diagnosis in the note unless you provide consent under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Scheduled treatment dates that the doctor may still require conflict with your capacity to work. To discover more, look into your company's extended medical leave policy.

What information may your doctor share with you?

Healthcare providers and professionals must secure sensitive health information about patients under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Before disclosing such information, they must get the patient's permission or face penalties and fines. Healthcare providers typically do not share specifics about a patient's medical status due to HIPAA. Instead, they may merely confirm your medical need to skip work, detail any modifications required for your illness, and, if necessary, prescribe a period of absence from work.

doctors note for work

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), employers can ask a healthcare practitioner for further information about an employee's health condition or handicap, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). This extra information can only be sought if the question is connected to the individual's employment and necessary activities and gets based on a business need. If an employer requests further information, they must adhere to the ADA's confidentiality guidelines to preserve sensitive information.

A doctor's note for work example

Your company will outline any prerequisites for a doctor's letter. On the other hand, most employers need the date and time of the visit, any suggestions for time off work due to the injury or sickness, and any work accommodations that must get made for the individual.

Examine the following sample doctor's note to understand what an employer would expect:

630-885-8473 Northwestern Medical Center, Geneva IL

May 28th, 2022

Regarding John Ryan

Who This Letter Is Addressed To:

From May 28th, 2022, through June 3rd, 2022, please excuse John Ryan from work. John has a critical medical condition that necessitates a five-day recuperation period. On June 3rd, 2022, he may return to work on a limited basis. John cannot lift more than 15 pounds during the light-duty limits and must have a chair ready to take sat rests during his shift. The light-duty limitations will last until June 3rd, 2022, after which he will be able to resume his regular responsibilities.


Sam Smith, Ph.D.

How do I get a doctor's note?

  • Contact your doctor by phone or in person.
  • Visit the doctor's office.
  • Use a genuine reason for why you aren't feeling well.
  • Get your doctor's note for work. Ensure it includes why you consulted the medical doctor and their suggestion for work leave.

doctors note for work

Can you fake a doctor's note for work?

Using a doctor's note template to forge such a document is unlawful (illegal) and unethical. However, it is not unusual for people to get out of obligations at school or work by falsifying a doctor's letter.

Some people may be experiencing symptoms but cannot schedule an appointment to excuse their absence.

In short, avoid using a fake doctor's note for work. Book a real doctor's appointment and obtain a doctor's note/medical note for a simple condition.

How do you get a doctor's note for work without being sick?

  • Take notice of your company's rules and regulations.
  • Schedule an appointment with your physician.
  • Submit a request for a doctor's note.
  • If you get admitted to the hospital, ask for the note directly.
  • On your return, fill out any forms that your company requires.

doctors note for work

author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, American Express, Reader's Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo,, SparkHire,,, FairyGodBoss,, St. Edwards University, NC State University,, Thrive Global,, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.

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