How to Call In Sick at Walmart: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

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A guide to calling out at Walmart when you’re feeling ill

Co-authored byElaine Lou Cartasand Johnathan Fuentes

Last Updated: June 27, 2023Fact Checked

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  • Calling in Sick
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  • Should you take a medical leave?
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  • Expert Interview

Got a shift coming up at Walmart, but feeling under the weather? If so, you’ll need to let your team know you won’t be able to make it. But how do you call in sick when you work for the largest employer in America? Lucky for you, Walmart makes calling in sick fairly simple, and this article will show you a few ways to do it. We’ll also explain what happens if you call out too often, and how to request a long-term medical leave if you’re dealing with a more serious health issue. Keep reading to learn how to get the time off you need so you can return to your job at Walmart feeling refreshed.

Things You Should Know

  • Call 1-800-775-5944 or go to to report an absence. Provide your Walmart ID Number, date of birth, store number, and any other info requested.
  • If possible, be sure to call in sick at least 3 hours before your shift’s start time. Missing too many shifts, or forgetting to call out, could lead to termination.
  • You can apply for a leave of absence (LOA) due to major health issues. Most LOAs are unpaid, but you may be eligible for short-term disability payments.

Section 1 of 3:

Calling in Sick

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  1. 1

    Call 1-800-775-5944 to call in sick over the phone. When prompted, enter your Walmart Identification Number (WIN), date of birth, and the store number for the Walmart where you work. You’ll receive a confirmation number. Write this number down. You’ll then be transferred to your store manager. Give them your confirmation number and explain why you’re calling out. For instance, you can say “I’m not feeling well,” or “My daughter is sick and I’m taking her to the doctor.”[1]

    • If possible, call out at least 3 hours before your shift is scheduled to begin.
    • You don’t need to provide a doctor’s note.
    • You don’t need to provide detailed medical information when calling out. You can simply say “I’m feeling sick.”
    • You’re allowed to call in sick if you’re experiencing an illness or injury, or if your child or dependent family member is sick.
    • Avoid calling out unless you (or your child or dependent family member) are actually sick.
  2. 2

    Go to to report an absence online. Select “Login” at the top right of your screen, then enter your WIN and password. Once you’re logged in, select “Report an Absence” from the options at the top of your screen. Select which shift you’ll be missing, then provide a brief explanation for the absence. For instance, you could write “I have a fever” or “My son is sick and missing school today.” After providing your reason, click submit. Write down the confirmation number that appears on your screen.[2]

    • You can also download the Me@Walmart app and report your absence using the steps above.
    • Submit your absence request at least 3 hours before your shift is scheduled to begin, if possible.
    • As a courtesy, call your manager to let them know you’ll be missing your shift, in case they aren’t automatically notified in time.
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  1. 1

    You get 6 paid days off per year to use for call outs, with no penalty. More specifically, you get 48 hours of “Protected Paid Time Off” (PPTO)—or six 8-hour workdays—which you can use at any time. PPTO is available to all Walmart retail associates: full-time, part-time, and temporary. Using PPTO won’t count against you as long as you call out before your shift begins.[3]

    • New hires don’t get PPTO right away. Associates accrue PPTO according to how many hours they work and how long they’ve been with the company.
    • PPTO counts against your regular “paid time off” (PTO). For instance, new full-time associates accrue 72 hours of PTO in their first year, 48 of which are “protected” for use as sick days.
    • Likewise, using too much regular PTO (say, for vacation days) may leave you with fewer PPTO hours to use for sick days.
    • Unused PPTO rolls over into the next year.
  2. 2

    If you run out of PPTO, you accrue “warning points” for call outs. You receive 1 “warning point” for each absence you request. Warning points are used to track employee conduct, and each point stays on your record for six months. Having points on your record makes it more likely that you’ll face disciplinary action, like write-ups or termination.[4]

    • For instance, if you have no PPTO remaining, and you call in sick twice in January and once in March, you’ll have 3 points on your record starting in March.
    • In this example, the 2 points from January will disappear in July, and the point from March will disappear in September.
    • You’ll also receive 1 point for missing more than half a shift by showing up late, leaving early, or both.
    • If you have no more PPTO, you won’t get paid for your shift if you call out.
  3. 3

    You receive 2 warning points if you fail to report an absence. This happens regardless of whether you have PPTO hours available. Failing to report can include not showing up to your shift, or reporting an absence after your shift’s start time. You can void this situation by calling in sick before your shift is scheduled to begin.[5]

    • If you have an emergency and can’t call in, contact your manager (or have a family member do so) as soon as possible. They may be able to provide an accommodation or exception, depending on the situation.
  4. 4

    If you accrue 5 or more points, you could lose your job. You’ll accumulate points quickly if you miss multiple shifts in a six-month period, so it’s best to avoid calling in sick unless you’re unable to work. Talk to your manager if you feel you’re worried about occurring points due to an illness or injury, or due to a child or family member’s illness. If possible, ask them for an accommodation, such as allowing you to work fewer shifts, if you think such a change would help you.[6]

    • If you have an injury or chronic condition that’s causing you to miss work, consider taking a medical leave.[7]
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Section 3 of 3:

Should you take a medical leave?

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  1. 1

    Consider a medical leave if you can’t work for an extended period. To be eligible, you must be diagnosed with a health condition that prevents you from working, such as an injury, physical illness, major surgery, mental health condition, or substance use disorder (including attending a treatment or rehab program). All Walmart employees are entitled to 12 weeks of unpaid medical leave, regardless of their position, pay rate, or how long they’ve been with the company. By federal law, you will be able to keep your job and return to work after your leave has ended.[8]

    • You can also apply for a medical leave if your child, spouse, or other immediate family member is severely ill, requiring you to care for them full-time.
    • Sign in to to request a leave of absence. You’ll need to provide your WIN, work schedule, and other information.[9]
    • You’ll need to obtain medical documentation from your healthcare provider, such as a letter in support of your medical leave.
    • Depending on your state, you may also be eligible for paid sick leave or short-term disability assistance under certain circ*mstances. Contact a Human Resources manager to ask if you qualify.[10]
  2. 2

    You may be eligible for Walmart's short-term disability program. If you’ve been with the company for a year or more and you become unable to work due to illness or injury, you can apply to receive short-term disability payments directly from Walmart. If approved, you’ll be paid 50%-60% of your average weekly wages, until your medical leave ends. Apply for Walmart’s short-term disability payments when you submit your leave of absence request. [11]

    • Your short-term disability payments will be taxed like regular income.
    • This program is part of your employee benefits package, which also includes your health insurance and vacation days. It’s separate from short-term disability programs offered in certain states.
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      Expert Interview

      Thanks for reading our article! If you’d like to learn more about the corporate world, check out our in-depth interview with Elaine Lou Cartas.

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      About This Article

      How to Call In Sick at Walmart: Everything You Need to Know (29)

      Co-authored by:

      Elaine Lou Cartas

      Business & Career Coach

      This article was co-authored by Elaine Lou Cartas and by wikiHow staff writer, Johnathan Fuentes. Elaine Lou Cartas is an award-winning Business & Executive Career Coach and the CEO of Elaine Lou Coaching, based in Los Angeles, California. With over 10+ years of professional experience, Elaine guides women of color, and allies, who’ve established themselves in leadership and executive roles to create a holistic life so they can lead without sacrificing their well-being. She was awarded #1 Thought Leader by LA Weekly + Top 5 Business Coaches by Apple News for 2023. Her career advice has also been featured in Fobes, Business Insider, Money Magazine, and LinkedIn News. Elaine is also the host of the Color Your Dreams Podcast ( Elaine received her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Sociology from the University of California, Irvine; and her Master's in Leadership and Management at the University of La Verne. This article has been viewed 79,081 times.

      6 votes - 83%

      Co-authors: 4

      Updated: June 27, 2023


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