Leave of Absence Letter for Personal Reasons Example

Discussing leave of absence
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There are many reasons you may need to take a leave of absence from your job. You may have personal or family related reasons for needing to take extended time away from your job. A discussion with your supervisor should be followed by a leave of absence letter citing personal reasons. Here’s information on types of leaves from work, how to request a leave of absence for personal reasons, and a sample letter to give you an idea of how to write your own.

Approved Leaves from Work

There are certain circumstances your employer, by law, has to grant you the time off you request. The company may not be required by law to pay you, either fully or in part, while you are away from your job, but there are legal protections to guarantee that you can return to your job when your leave is finished.

Some of the reasons for mandatory leave are the birth or adoption of a child, certain medical conditions, or to honor a military commitment.

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) states the legal guidelines businesses have to follow regarding mandatory leave.

Reasons you may take a voluntary leave would be more personal - like continuing your education, personal stress, or illness. Your employer is not required by law to grant voluntary, or personal, leave. When you start your job, get to know what your rights are when it comes requesting and taking a leave of absence. Guidelines can be very different between companies, so don’t assume they are all alike.

Extended leave is often unpaid, but you may be able to use accrued vacation time if you can plan ahead. In many circumstances, employers are happy to honor your request for the leave of absence, especially if you are open and honest with your boss about what you are going through and request the time off with plenty of notice.

Unfortunately, you will sometimes find yourself seeking leave unexpectedly and may not be able to give much warning ahead of time. Whatever your circumstances are, be sure to ask for an extended period of leave professionally and courteously.

Ask Verbally and in Writing

Plan to request for your time off both verbally and in written form. It is always advisable to have a face to face conversation with your supervisor about your need to take a leave of absence. You do not have to give them every detail about what you are dealing with, but the more aware they are of what you are going through, the more understanding they are likely to be.

You should follow up your in-person meeting with a written document clearly requesting the terms of your leave.

You can send your letter via email, post, or give it to your supervisor by hand. Also, if you work with a team of coworkers, you should notify them after your leave is approved.

You can send an email to your colleagues as a group or individually, depending on the size of your company/department, and how close you are to the people you work with. The key is to be open and honest with those you work for and with, but remember, you only need to share as much detail as you are comfortable with regarding your leave.

What to Include in Your Letter

When you write your letter, there is some essential information you should include.

  • Begin by stating how much time you are planning on taking off and when you would like the leave of absence to begin and end.
  • Include a brief explanation of why you are taking the leave, and perhaps where you will be while you are away.
  • If it is possible, offer your assistance and provide the best way to contact you during your time off.
  • Be sure to thank your employer for considering your request.

Letter Example Requesting a Leave of Absence for Personal Reasons

Your Name
Your Address
Your City, State Zip Code
Your Phone Number


City, State Zip Code

Dear Mr./Ms. Lastname:

I would like to request a two month leave of absence for personal reasons. If possible, I would like the leave from work to begin on August 1, with a return date of October 1, 2018.

If approved, I will be staying with family in Anycity during this time period and I would be glad to assist with any questions via email or phone whenever possible.

Thank you very much for your consideration.


Your Signature (hard copy letter)

Your Typed Name

Sending an Email

If you are sending your letter by email, you don’t need to include the contact information at the top of the letter. Your subject line should state something clear and concise, like: “Leave of Absence Request - Firstname Lastname.” Begin your letter with a salutation, and include your contact information with your signature.