I’m currently salary. My boss had me
working 6 days a week at 64 hours. I
told him I needed help. He told me
there was nothing he could do he can’t
pull managers out of his back pocket.
So I used my vacation week with a dr
note. I really don’t want to go back my
anxiety is terrible because of him. I
have a 3yr old and bills to pay. Will I be
eligible for unemployment if I continue
to get Drs notes until he fired me?

Asked on May 2, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, doctor's notes do not allow you to miss work legally: you can only miss work if you do one or both of the following:
1) You have and use paid time off (e.g. sick leave or vacation days) to cover the absence; and/or
2) Your company is covered by, your are eligible for, your condition warrants, and you use FMLA unpaid leave. (You can find the Family and Medical Leave Act criteria on the U.S. Dept. of Labor website.)
Otherwise, if you don't have, don't use, or run out of paid time off and/or can't or don't use FMLA leave, then if you miss work, it will be an unauthorized absence--and you can be fired "for cause" (that is, you would *not* be eligible for unemployment benefits) for unauthorized absences. A doctor's note does not turn an unauthorized absence into an authorized one, or otherwise let you escapet the consequences of unauthorized absence.

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