12 Sneaky Ways to Skip the Office

According to a study, U.S.-based Google searches for excuses to miss work were at a five-year high and have risen 630% since 2018. While employers understand that you may need to skip work, they won’t accept any absurd or suspicious reasons. Here is a list of 12 legitimate excuses to take off from work.

Personal Illness

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survey found that nearly 89% of all US workers have worked through an illness, and two in five workers are afraid of taking sick leave because others may assume they are faking it.

However, it is still a legitimate excuse to miss work, especially if the illness is contagious, or you can provide a doctor’s note after you return to work.

Mental Health

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As mental health awareness grows across the globe, many employers allow their workforce to take leave to manage their stress, anxiety, or other mental health issues. Check with your employer whether you are eligible for job-protected leave under The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to address mental health conditions.

Illness Or Death Of A Loved One

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You can take off from work to care for a sick child, spouse, parent, or other family member. If your loved one has passed away, it is also a valid excuse for grief and to attend or plan the funeral. Employers understand the importance of extending leaves to employees on the grounds of compassion.

Medical Appointment

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You can request your boss to grant leave for a pre-scheduled appointment or emergency visit to a doctor or dentist. Be prepared that your boss may ask you to furnish proof of visit to ensure you didn’t lie to them.


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Unfortunate event such as a car, fire, drowning, skiing, or any other accident is another genuine excuse for not showing up at work. You would need time to handle the situation, file for insurance claims, or rest and recover in case of serious injuries.

Unavailability of Transport

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73% of Americans use their car to commute between home and work, while the rest rely on bicycles, motorcycles, ride-hailing services, taxis, car sharing, etc. If your personal vehicle has broken down or other commuting services are unavailable due to strikes or bad weather, it is an acceptable excuse for missing work.

Pet Problems

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You can take a leave from work if your pet is unwell or you are bereaving a pet loss. Some companies offer futernity or pawternity leave benefits to employees for pet-related time-off.

House Emergency

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A gas leak, pest infestation, pipe burst, power outage, roof damage, and flooded basement are common household emergencies that need your attention. So, it is a genuine excuse to miss work even at short or last-minute notice.

Special Occasions

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Special occasions such as new birth, events at the child’s school, family reunions, weddings, birthdays, and anniversaries are times to celebrate. Your employer may allow you to apply for a leave for these events.

Package Delivery

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If you are expecting important documents or packages that need your signature upon delivery at home, it is a believable excuse for missing work. Make sure that you have confirmation on the exact delivery date so that you don’t waste your leave day.

Personal Errands

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Some personal errands related to banking, government documentation, or legal work can be done only on workdays. It is a good excuse to tell your boss you can’t report to work that day.

Jury Duty

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You are entitled to a paid court leave if you have been summoned as a juror or witness for legal proceedings. However, you have to seek permission from your employer to avail of the leave.

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