How to write a request for leave email (with template and examples)

How to write a request for leave email (with template and examples)
Jobstreet content teamupdated on 22 January, 2024
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Knowing how to compose a request for leave email is an essential skill in the workplace. A professional letter to your employer can encourage them to approve your leave. It allows your manager and colleagues to prepare for your absence and maintain a productive work environment. It also provides a paper trail of your leave requests and time off taken.

This guide shows you how to write a letter of leave from work. Reviewing the examples and template can help you draft your email. Here's what this article will cover:

What is a request for leave email?

A request for leave email is a formal communication that you submit to your employer to ask for time off work. The message includes important details, such as your specific leave dates and a brief explanation of the reason for your absence. The email may also contain documentation to support your request, such as a medical letter. Reasons that people might need to request leave include:

Vacation (annual leave)

The most common reason for people to request leave is when they're planning a vacation. Annual leave usually comprises a fixed number of days. Your workplace may specify how many vacation days you can receive. In the Philippines, The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) mandates service incentive leave (SIL) to all employees who provide one year of service. You’ll get five days of SIL which can be used as vacation or sick leave.

Personal reasons

Most employees can request time off, such as carer's leave, to attend to personal matters. A personal matter might also involve visiting a relative or completing a personal project. Employers typically count personal leave as part of your annual leave allowance.

Sickness

You can apply for sick leave to give yourself time to recover from injury or illness. Your employer may ask for a medical certificate, depending on the situation and company policy. Employers record sick leave separately from your annual leave allowance.

Emergency

Ask for emergency leave if you need to take unexpected time off at short notice. Many companies have an emergency leave policy that enables you to resolve urgent matters. However, taking emergency leave days may reduce your vacation leave allowance.

Bereavement

Bereavement leave is for people who have lost a family member. Employment law doesn't require employers to grant bereavement leave. However, many companies have policies in place to support their employees during this difficult time.

Childbirth

Childbirth is another common reason for time off work. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) says that people who give birth naturally or with a caesarian section can take maternity leave of up to 105 days and unpaid leave of up to 30 days. Paternity leave is also available for male employees whose spouses have given birth. New fathers can request up to seven days off in the first four weeks after the birth.

How to write a request for leave email

Here are some tips to help you compose a well-crafted communication when you want time off work:

Address the appropriate person/team

Addressing your leave application email to the correct person or team can help them process your request quickly. Many employees apply to their immediate supervisor or manager. To check who takes responsibility for approving your leave application, review your company's policy.

Write the recipient's name in your formal email greeting. Start with "Dear" and follow this with the person's name. You can also add their job title.

State the purpose and duration of the absence

Write a clear and concise message. Include the specific dates of your absence. Briefly explain the reason for your request.

Include supporting documentation or information

Including relevant information and supporting documents can increase your chances of approval. If you're applying for sick leave, attach a scanned copy of the doctor's note to your email. If you're requesting paternity leave, include documents proving your spouse has given birth.

Offer assistance or suggest solutions to minimize disruption

Your employer needs to make arrangements to cover your work when you take time away from your job. Offering alternative solutions can lessen the impact of your absence. If you're handing off pending tasks or passing an ongoing project to a team member, provide instructions to make the job easier.

Express gratitude for your employer's support and consideration. Let your email recipient know that you're available for questions or clarification regarding your leave. Include your contact number to ensure that they can reach you.

Use a professional closing

Remember that your email is official correspondence. End your leave request letter with a formal closing. For example, you could write "Sincerely" or "Best regards" and then follow it up with your name.

Proofread the email

Identify and correct errors in spelling, grammar, and punctuation before you send your letter. Make sure that the recipient's name is correct and the subject line is clear. Check that you've included your contact number and attached other relevant documents.

woman writing

Tips for writing an email requesting leave

Here are several tips for composing email leave requests:

Understand the deadlines and procedures for correct submission

The process for approving leave can vary between companies. Know the submission deadline to give your application the best chance of approval, and learn the process your employer uses for approving leave requests.

Follow company-specific guidelines

Guidelines may include instructions on whom to address your email to, how to format subject lines and body text, and which relevant details to include. If you're unsure, ask your supervisor or manager for clarification.

Customize the email content based on your circumstances

Tailor the language and content of your email to match the type of leave you're requesting. If you're seeking permission to take time off for maternity or paternity leave, include the baby's due date and the potential start and end dates of your leave. Write a clear subject line. For instance, "Maternity leave request" clearly indicates a maternity leave application. 

Maintain a polite and professional tone

Professionally writing an email means using correct grammar and a formal tone. It also entails being clear about your reasons for requesting time off. Professionalism helps to build trust and demonstrates your courtesy and respect for your workplace and colleagues.

Address potential concerns and offer possible solutions in the email

Offering solutions to your employer's concerns demonstrates your commitment to your work role and responsibilities. For instance, if you have a current project, acknowledge that your extended sick leave may push the timeline. You could also create a timeline of the project's deadlines, and outline any necessary arrangements you made. Also, include details like who to check in with, and who they can contact in case something needs to be fixed or addressed during your leave.

Request for leave letter template

Here's a template you can use for your leave request email:

Dear [Recipient's name],

I am writing to request leave from [start date] to [end date]. During this period, [provide the reason for your request].

I have taken into consideration the impact my absence may have on the company and the team. As such, [provide any solutions you have in mind to address any concerns or potential issues].

Thank you for your time and consideration. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding my leave request. You can reach me at [contact information].

Best regards,

[Your name]

Request for leave letter examples

Below are a few examples of leave requests that you can use as a reference for your email:

Carer's leave sample letter (personal reasons)

Here's a personal leave request example:

Dear John Rivera,

I am writing to request leave from Dec. 30, 2023, to Jan. 9, 2024, for personal reasons. I have taken into consideration the impact my absence may have on the company, the team, and ongoing projects. As such, I have created a detailed brief that includes the project's deadlines and who to contact in case certain aspects of the project need to be adjusted or fixed during my absence. 

Thank you for your time and consideration. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding my leave request. You can reach me at 0917-223-4459.

Best regards,

Michael Chua

Sample sick leave request

Here's a sick leave request example that can help you create your own sick leave request:

Dear Ms. Michelle Villaraza,

I am writing to request 10 days off – Dec. 4 to 8 and Dec. 11 to 15. I intend to take this time to recover from my illness, which we discussed yesterday. I have attached my medical certificate for your reference.

I have considered the impact my absence may have on the company and the team. I have informed my colleagues of my time off, and they have offered to cover for me so I can get proper rest.

Thank you for your time and consideration. You can reach me at 0918-998-7337 if you have any questions or concerns regarding my request.

Best regards,

Jennifer Angeles

Sample annual leave request

If have an upcoming planned vacation, here's an annual leave request email example that can provide some guidance:

Hello Raymond,

As we discussed in our meeting yesterday, I would like to request annual leave from Dec. 26 to 29. I have completed my tasks for the week. Thank you for your time and consideration. You can reach me at 0917-558-7733 or [email protected] if you have any questions or concerns regarding my request.

Sincerely,

Joseph

Why is a request for leave email important?

Writing a formal request for leave is important to maintain clear communication. A professional email:

  • Ensures a smooth transition: Your manager or supervisor can plan accordingly and delegate tasks to other team members if they know when you're on leave and when you intend to resume work.
  • Minimizes misunderstandings and disruptions: Providing the relevant details of your leave reduces miscommunication or confusion and allows your team to plan for your absence.
  • Provides documentation for employee and employer records: Your leave request email is an official document that you and your employer can reference in workplace disputes.
  • Complies with legal/company policies: Submitting a leave request ensures that you follow the company's policy for taking time off.
  • Provides the necessary details for successful leave approval: You're more likely to gain approval for time off if your email contains all the information your supervisor requires.

Conclusion

Writing a well-structured leave request email maintains your professionalism and can help you get the time off you need. A formal request is also important for effective communication with your employer and colleagues. To create a successful letter, include all necessary details and documentation. Check that the email has no grammar or spelling errors. Finally, use a professional tone and ensure that the email subject line clearly explains its content.

man typing on laptop

FAQs

Here are answers to common questions about leave requests:

  1. What information should I include in my leave letter?
    ⁠Your leave application's format should include the start and end dates of your absence, the reason (if necessary) for your leave, and your name and contact information. Also, remember to include the recipient's name and copies of any supporting documents.
  2. How should I state the reason for my leave request?
    ⁠State your reason for requesting time off clearly and concisely. You can begin with, "I am writing to request leave for," and then mention your reason in one or two straightforward sentences.
  3. What level of detail is necessary in a leave letter?
    ⁠Include enough detail for the recipient to understand your request. The level of detail depends on the reason and type of leave you're applying for. When requesting sick leave, for instance, your employer may require you to provide more specific information than for a casual leave application. 
  4. How much notice should I give before requesting leave?
    ⁠The amount of notice your employer requires may depend on the type of leave you're requesting. You can usually request time off on the same day if you're unwell or have an emergency. For vacation or other planned time off, the general rule is to give a minimum of two weeks, although many employers appreciate as much notice as possible.
  5. What should I do if my employer denied my leave request?
    Arrange to meet with your manager or supervisor if they deny your leave request. Ask them why your leave was denied and if you can do anything to gain approval. Consider adjusting your request accordingly if there's a valid reason for denial.

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