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Currently I am working in another country, and planning to do some surgery back in my hometown, because it is much cheaper there (even after adding the flight ticket).

How can I find out if this is acceptable? It seems like people might think that I am abusing medical leave for annual leave/holiday. I want to avoid this impression.

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    Ask HR. Having said that, I don't think that you are abusing medical leave but the only opinion that counts is HR's. – Vietnhi Phuvan Nov 19 '14 at 0:43
  • Hi rcs, I modified this to be a bit more on topic here. Let me know if this modified your intent too much and if so feel free to edit it to clarify. Thanks! – enderland Nov 19 '14 at 3:58
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    Buddy take paid leave in combo with medical leave and get your surgery done.You can show your documents when you come back...no point enduring illness just for what people might think ..are you from india? – amar Nov 19 '14 at 5:28
  • @VietnhiPhuvan: Yeah I'll definitely ask HR first before taking the leave. Just want to know if there are other people ever encounter this kind of situation before. – rcs Nov 22 '14 at 0:01
  • @amar: I'm not from India, why are you asking that? – rcs Nov 22 '14 at 0:02
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How can I find out if this is acceptable? It seems like people might think that I am abusing medical leave for annual leave/holiday. I want to avoid this impression.

Clearly you need to discuss your plan with HR.

They are experts on the benefits your company offers, corporate policies, what is permitted and what is not.

You can also discuss your concerns about the impression this might give to others in your company. Most HR reps are trained in dealing with this sort of thing and can give you advice on how to deal with your situation appropriately.

If you are concerned how this might come across to your manager, HR can also help you with that.

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Every company I have worked for has had policies on home medical leave is used.

  • If you needed to miss a few hours (Dentist, Annual Physical...) no proof was needed.
  • If you need to miss a day (Illness) you didn't need any proof.
  • Needed to miss multiple day (3 or more) you might need to how you went to the doctor. This could for something like the flu, or even getting wisdom teeth removed.
  • If you were going to miss longer, much more proof was needed.

For the longer duration they were concerned that employee who were sick for a week, were on vacation. In other cases we had a short term disability plan which covered your pay if you had to miss more than a week, or were admitted to a hospital. The paperwork for the short term disability was not trivial. The doctor need to provide a signed form with diagnoses, procedure information, dates and estimated time to return to work. The company had a medical staff to review the paperwork, before they would authorize payment for the missed days.

I am not saying your company does this, but they likely have some procedures in place to avoid fraudulent use of medical leave. HR will know. You should approach them early, the paperwork is much easier to process when you are not trying to do so while recovering from the surgery.

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    “The paperwork for the short term disability was not trivial. The doctor need to provide a signed form with diagnoses, procedure information, dates and estimated time to return to work.” Interesting. Asking for this kind of paperwork is completely illegal where I live (Denmark) because stuff like diagnoses are confidential information. The company can, at their own expense, have the employee go to the doctor and get a document that confirms that they are really sick and an estimate for how long it will take, but nothing more. – Alice Ryhl Sep 19 at 21:49
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You don't :)

Simply because you're not allowed to do it.

It's the doctor that determines if it's the sick leave. You need a paper from the doctor to get sick leave, don't you? ;)

So if the doctor gives you the paper, than it's the sick leave, otherwise it's not. Neither you nor your company have anything to say about than.

  • that's... not how it works. It's very company-dependent. The fact that it involves travel to other countries that might be seen as unnecessary makes it even more company-dependent. – Ben Barden Sep 19 at 21:49
  • @BenBarden sorry but I don't see how it is company dependent. The company is required to accept the paper from the doctor. If they don't, they are acting against the law... – Danubian Sailor Sep 19 at 21:53
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    That may be true in some specific country or locale, by the laws of that country or locale, but it's certainly not true everywhere. In many companies, you can take sick leave just fine without a doctor's note, and I've never heard of a doctor's note having the force of law like that. – Ben Barden Sep 19 at 21:55
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    That depends on the country and as well as company policy and doctors certainty don't have any legal standing other than as witnesses – Neuromancer Sep 19 at 23:19

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