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Will I lose my job if I go to treatment?

A common concern amongst people seeking treatment is whether or not they will be able to retain employment during their recovery process. We will discuss federal protections that have been put in place for members seeking treatment for substance abuse later in this article.

Something to consider… How long will you really maintain that job if you continue to drink and/or use? Regardless of your situation, you could possibly have an excuse not to seek treatment on any given day. The longer that you go without getting help for your addiction, the more likely it is that the consequences will increase. Not only could you potentially lose your job, you could lose your house, loved ones, other material possessions, children and end up with serious medical issues and legal problems.

A job is never a justification not to seek treatment. The sooner that you are willing to set aside those reservations, the sooner you can get your life back. Many have fears about the stigma they could potentially be placed under for admitting that they have a problem to employer’s or co-workers. It is recommended that you go to someone that you can trust with this information. Remember, you don’t owe anyone else an explanation but the people that control the fate of your employment. Only disclose what you feel is necessary to disclose to said people.

We urge you to have a treatment location picked out ahead of time with an admission date set. Maybe you have a job where you can work from home. There are (occasionally) client’s that still maintain full employment status during their time in treatment. This is something that you should discuss with your case manager and therapist to determine if this would be conducive to your recovery journey. Notify your admission counselor if this is something you plan to do.

Federal protections for people seeking drug treatment:

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) – this protects people from being fired for seeking drug/alcohol treatment. It also protects you from being demoted, fired or refused to hire because you have a substance use history.

Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) – Allows you to take up to 12-weeks off of work to deal with substance related problems. Please do research to find out if you qualify for this under your employer. Varies by length of time at employer and size of organization.

There are union protections as well. Please research The National Labor Relations Act for more information.

Our admissions team can help support you through this decision. Please reach out today! 866-757-0474