8 Good Excuses to Miss Work on Short Notice (+ Sample Email)

you work hard. You always do the extra mile to do a great job. You follow company policy. When you need freedom, you always give a lot of notice. Despite this, there are times when you need the day off because something urgent is just popping up. So how do you politely articulate your reasons for calling from work?

This guide offers a quick overview of perfectly good excuses to miss a job at short notice – and explains the best way to forward the request to your employer.

8 good excuses to miss work at short notice

Do you have a good reason to stop? It is not ideal to call at short notice. However, a good boss knows that some things are inevitable. Here are eight legitimate excuses to take your day off at short notice.

1. Personal illness

If you do not feel well, never go to work. It only risks spreading disease to others. If you work remotely, do not try to “pass” it off your couch. You will do no good to anyone if you try.

As Trey Burnett, regional vice president at Robert Half, well Sums it up:

“People are not 100% when they get sick, so it’s going to show in the work they do. Employers should set an example. If you’m sick, definitely take time off.”

2. Family emergency

It certainly makes sense to take a day to deal with a family emergency – family illness, problems at home due to a natural disaster or a more serious problem. Failure to do so may result in a snowball, and you may need even more time out of work. If matters are serious, do not hesitate to request a longer bereavement leave.

3. Household problems

A home problem can be an emergency repair or another problem in your home. Most repair companies require the landlord to be present. Of course, a reasonable employer will understand this.

4. Travel problems

Traffic jams cause a temporary delay. However, there can be serious problems that make your trip impossible – heavy rain, snow, severe ice on the road, and so on. Do not hesitate to maintain safety and request leave from work. If possible, you can offer remote entry.

5. Accident

Even if you are not seriously injured, an accident is very difficult to deal with. You will probably be shaking and unsure of yourself. Do not work in such a situation. Stop, and give yourself a day to recover.

6. Technical problems

This is especially true for remote workers. Technical issues may prevent you from logging in that day or maintain a secure connection. Ask your boss for guidance. So do not feel guilty for taking the day off.

7. The duty of the jury

The duty of the jury can be unpredictable. You may know when you were called at first, but you never know if you will be called to serve in a trial, or when that trial will be extended. Notify your employer as soon as you receive the call. God Federal laws Employers are required to provide leave for the position of jury (albeit free of charge), but in some countries there are laws for paid leave.

8. Need for PTO

PTO is a personal vacation. It is designed to provide employees with the freedom they need to handle a variety of personal businesses. Think of it as the ‘everything else’ category. A good employer will not prevent you from taking a “mental day” for a fee when you are heading for burnout and exhaustion.

How do I apply for leave of absence at the last minute?

First, follow company policies to stop working at the last minute. Contact your supervisor or other dedicated person as soon as you understand the need for a vacation. Be polite, but direct and to the point. The more time you give them to make arrangements the better. Also, give your boss any relevant information they or your sub may need during the day.

Good excuses to miss working on a sample email at short notice

If sending an email is okay according to company policy, do so. This is how things are documented. It can look something like this.

Peace [Supervisor],

Just sending you an early email to let you know I will not be today. The reason for my absence is (short explanation). I’ll be back at the office tomorrow at the usual time.

If anyone needs them, the supply cabinet keys are in the top drawer of my desk. Also, the maintenance staff arrives this afternoon to replace the bulbs in the conference room.

Thanks for your understanding,

Your name


Whatever you do, do not overdo it. Do not apologize. Do not offer to schedule your replacement. Do not list your reason for your day off. If you do, you will create the impression that your right to take freedom is up for debate. it’s not supposed to be.

How do I tell my boss I can not come in person?

Call your boss politely and as soon as possible to let him know about your absence. Briefly state the reason for requesting leave for one last reason. Keep in mind that good managers can handle changes in the workforce schedule. Do not feel guilty for taking the time you need.

Last thoughts

Do not feel guilty about taking time off work if you have an illness or emergency. It happens to the best employees. Just be sure to let your employer know as soon as possible and be professional about it. Finally, do not feel guilty, do not take responsibility for managing the company’s schedule, and do not go to work when you are not in a productive situation.


  • Elena has been conducting content activity at Freesumes since 2017. She works closely with copywriters, designers and career professionals to ensure that all content meets our highest editorial standards. Most recently, she has written over 200 career-related works around resume writing, career advice … more


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