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Someone in my office has written this email.

I am on leave after 2:30pm today. Have a doctor's appointment for my son.

Is the above sentence correct?

My correction would be -

I will be on a leave after 2:30 pm today. I have an appointment with doctor for my son.

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  • Your version of the first sentence would sound better if you deleted "a" from "a leave", but the original is relatively common in informal English (the tenses don't agree, but there's an implied "going to be" after "am"). Dropping the "I" from "I have" or "I will" is also relatively common in informal English in that kind of context. My correction to the second sentence would be to add the "I" but leave the rest as is, or, better, to say "I will be taking my son to the doctor". (Your second sentence doesn't sound right to me: I think it should be "...an appointment with the doctor...".)
    – nnnnnn
    Jun 13, 2016 at 0:56
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    Is this BrE? In the US, I would use "on leave" for longer term absences. For part of the day, "I will be out of the office from...".
    – user3169
    Jun 13, 2016 at 1:09
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    on leave is a phrase in itself. So you wouldn't say "on a leave".
    – user3169
    Jun 13, 2016 at 1:13
  • I'm leaving at 2:30 (today). My son has a doctor's appointment. Jun 13, 2016 at 3:23

2 Answers 2

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The first sentence is using the present tense to describe a current state of affairs, even though the action is in the future. We can use the present tense when future events are seen as timetabled, or inevitable. Examples

  • The plane leaves at six pm.
  • My music lesson is on Saturday next week.
  • The Juno probe arrives at Jupiter on the 4th of July.

It would be equally correct to use a future tense:

  • I will be on leave...
  • I'll be on leave ....
  • I'm going to be on leave...

The second sentence has had the word "I" cut from it. This is an example of ellipsis of the subject. It is more common in spoken English, and is normally avoided in formal written English. The use of the possessive (doctor's) is natural and correct.

Your second sentence is not idiomatic, since the word "doctor" needs an article. You could say "I have an appointment with the doctor...", however the original version means the same and is shorter.

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In the first sentence

I am on leave after 2:30pm today.

your office coworker is saying they will be out for an extended period of time ("on leave"), beginning at 2:30pm in the afternoon.

In the second sentence, your coworker is telling you why they are out

Have a doctor's appointment for my son.

They need to take their son to the doctor's.

The listener could easily assume that both are related, and possibly your coworker's son has a serious condition since your coworker is taking "leave" (possibly "medical leave") to look after their son.

If your coworker was only leaving for the afternoon because of the doctor's appointment, they might usually say

I am out of the office today after 2:30pm.
I am leaving the office at 2:30pm.
I will be out after 2:30pm today.

It might be that their son is fairly young since

(I) Have a doctor's appointment for my son.

implies the appointment was made by the parent, instead of

My son has a doctor appointment.

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