Medical Leave of Absence

For full description see Student Handbook, Part 4, Ch. 5 Voluntary Medical Leave of Absence

A student may request a Medical Leave of Absence (MLOA) from Miami University for physical health or psychological reasons if during the course of an academic term (Fall, Winter, Spring, or Summer) he or she suffers from a condition that prevents him/her from meeting the expectations of a student (e.g. unable to attend classes, unable to complete academic responsibilities, etc.) for an extended period of time during that term. The severity and duration of the problem must be such that it would not be reasonable to expect the student to be able to make up the missed work. Requests for a MLOA must be made in writing by the student to the Office of the Dean of Students and must be supported by a licensed health professional in the form of a completed, signed Provider Report form clearly indicating support for the MLOA. The Office of the Dean of Students holds the ultimate authority to approve a MLOA. The student will be notified in writing by the Office of the Dean of Students if the request has been approved or denied.

If the request for a MLOA is approved, a medical hold will be placed on the student’s future registration. The medical hold will remain in effect until a health professional has submitted a completed and signed Provider Return from Medical Leave of Absence Form to the Office of the Dean of Students documenting their assessment that the student’s condition has improved sufficiently for the student to return to the academic environment and is able to meet the expectations of a student without posing a significant risk of substantial harm to him/herself or others.

Please note that the MLOA is a withdrawal from a current (ongoing) or past (retroactive) term. If a student needs to withdrawal from a future term that has not yet started, it is not necessary to file MLOA paperwork. In this situation, the student should drop all of their courses online and then contact the Student Success office at 513.529.0007 to wrap up any loose ends. 

What the MLOA does

A MLOA will relieve a student of responsibility for uncompleted academic work but will not provide credit for work completed that term, unless the student has completed and been assigned a passing grade in a sprint course, i.e. any course less than a full term in length, prior to the date of his/her last class attendance for that term. If a student has completed and received a passing grade in a sprint course in the term from which he/she is requesting MLOA, he/she must indicate that on the MLOA request form as well as a rationale for retaining it; otherwise, it will also be removed from the student’s record.

(Note: The MLOA is “all or nothing”; it is not possible to receive a MLOA from individual classes while remaining enrolled in other classes. A student may petition the Inter-Divisional Committee of Advisers for withdrawal from single or multiple classes after the withdrawal deadline (9th week of classes) has passed by contacting his/her divisional advisor.)

The student’s transcript from a term for which a MLOA has been granted will indicate only “officially withdrawn [date]” without specifying the nature of the reason for that withdrawal in order to protect the privacy of the student.

The normal policies and procedures for grades for students who withdraw during an academic semester or term, as described in The Student Handbook, will apply to students who are placed on a voluntary medical leave of absence.

Reimbursement of tuition or fees

Effective July 1, 2012, a student will be provided with a refund of tuition and fees in accordance with the University’s established refund schedule unless they indicate directly to the Office of the Bursar that they prefer to receive a Medical Tuition Credit. A Medical Tuition Credit is a credit in an amount equal to that paid for tuition and general fees for the term of the MLOA less any student financial assistance that must be returned to the financial aid program. A Medical Tuition Credit will typically be applied to the first term of re-enrollment following the student’s MLOA and must be used within three years. A student is eligible for only one Medical Tuition Credit. Students are strongly urged to consult with the Office of Student Financial Assistance to determine how their withdrawal will affect their financial aid before determining whether to seek a refund or Medical Tuition Credit. For consultation, please contact the One Stop Office at 513-529-0001. 

Any direct refund of tuition or fees due the student will be determined from the last date of class attendance, as provided on the MLOA form, regardless of the date of the onset of the condition prompting the request for the MLOA. It is possible that a tuition refund insurance plan may cover part of the non-reimbursable tuition, for families who purchased such a plan. Questions regarding these options should be addressed to the Office of the Bursar.

Procedure for Obtaining a Medical Leave of Absence (MLOA)

  1. Assessment: 

The student should complete an assessment by a licensed medical or mental health practitioner, depending upon the nature of the condition, who will determine if the student is suffering from a condition that is preventing him/her from meeting the expectations of a student. This assessment may be completed by staff at the Student Health Service or the Student Counseling Service, or by other health providers qualified to make health assessments and diagnoses.

  1. Documentation:

The student will then complete his/her portion of the Provider Report Form and give it to the health care practitioner to complete the remainder of the form, indicating their assessment of the student’s current health status

  1. Application:

The student should then complete the MLOA Student Request Form.

  1. Submission:

The completed MLOA Provider Report Form and the MLOA Student Request Form should be submitted to:

Office of the Dean of Students
110 Warfield Hall
Miami University
Oxford, OH 45056
FAX: 513-529-3445
Email: deanofstudents@miamioh.edu

Submissions faxed or emailed must include original signatures.

  1. Notification of MLOA Status:

If the MLOA is granted, the student will receive written notification at their permanent address by U.S. mail and/or their University email, indicating that the MLOA has been successfully processed, that the registration hold is in place, and action to be completed prior to returning to Miami. If denied, similar notification will be sent to the permanent address.

  1. Clinical Follow-up:

The student should complete ongoing treatment as agreed to with a health professional. It is strongly suggested that for the student’s best interest and greatest likelihood of future success, he/she work with a health professional toward the goal of returning to academic life only when a plan has been enacted which helps the student to manage stressors and remain active, engaged, and successful at achieving their academic goals. He/she should feel well prepared for the rigors of returning to school after an absence before applying for re-enrollment. At minimum the student must be re-evaluated by a licensed health professional prior to application for re-enrollment to the university.

  1. Reinstatement:

The health professional should send a Return from Medical Leave of Absence Form to the Office of the Dean of Students, as above, verifying that the condition which led to the MLOA no longer prevents the student from meeting the expectations of a student.

  1. Notification of Reinstatement Decision:

Upon receipt of this documentation, the Office of the Dean of Students will make a decision regarding the lifting of the medical hold and notify the student by email of that decision. 

  1. Timing of Requests:

All requests for MLOA from the current semester should be completed before the end of the semester and as close as possible to the last date of class attendance as indicated on the MLOA form.

Applications for MLOA submitted after a semester has been completed are considered Retroactive MLOA. Under extraordinary circumstances a student may request MLOA from a semester that has already ended. The process for requesting a Retroactive MLOA is the same as for a current semester MLOA. However, the DOS' office will request consultation and recommendation from a 5-member team of MU health professionals called the Medical Evaluation Committee in its determination as to whether the criteria for a retroactive MLOA are met. The critical criteria for approval for a retroactive MLOA is that the Provider Report Form be provided by an appropriate health care professional who was involved in the assessment and/or treatment of the student’s condition during the term for which the condition is claimed to have prevented the student from functioning. Exceptions to this requirement may be considered if supported by detailed documentation by health professionals who were involved in assessment and/or treatment of the student’s condition within a reasonable period of time (i.e., a few weeks at most) immediately subsequent to the term in question.

Application for removal of the medical hold on registration and reinstatement should also be made in a timely fashion, e.g. as soon as the health professional is able to provide the supporting documentation of improvement. Submission of this documentation later than seven (7) days before the beginning of the term may also result in delayed processing and therefore a delay in registration for classes. Removal of the medical hold will not affect other holds previously placed by other offices. For questions about any remaining holds, contact the Office of the Registrar.

  1. Health practitioners:

Appropriate health practitioners for the purposes of supporting MLOA or return after MLOA must be currently licensed within their state of practice and in good standing in their fields. They must not have an immediate familial relationship with the student. These typically include: physicians, physician’s assistants, nurses, social workers, counselors, psychologists, or psychiatrists.

Further Assistance

For questions regarding the Medical Leave of Absence procedures, please contact: the Office of the Dean of Students at 513-529-1877.

For questions regarding financial options and obligations, please contact the One Stop at 513-529-0001.

For questions related to on campus housing and dining, please contact the HOME (Housing Options, Meals and Events) office at 513-529-5000 or via email home@MiamiOH.edu.