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Saturday, November 26, 2016

Writing letters of excuse



Some employers may ask employees for a formal letter explaining when and why they missed work. Sometimes these letters are written before an absence and sometimes they are written after.
Employees often also have to write excuse letters for longer leaves of absence or other extended time off.
Formal excuse letters are used in other situations too, such as an absence from jury duty or an absence from school.
Read below for tips on writing a formal excuse letter, as well as two sample letters: one sample to send an employer before you miss work and one for after.

Tips for Writing a Formal Excuse Letter

  • Follow business letter format. Use the official business letter format when writing your letter. You want this letter to be professional.
  • Understand your employer’s policies. Before you miss work, make sure you know the policy for letting your boss know that you will be absent. Know whether you need to tell your boss, and how you should get him or her that information (i.e. a phone call, a letter, an email). Also look into how far in advance you need to tell your employer.
  • Send the letter as soon as possible. If possible, send your excuse letter before you miss work. You want to give your employer time to reassign any of your tasks. If you are asking for a longer leave of absence, send this letter as early as possible. If you don’t have time to send a formal letter, consider sending an excuse email instead.
  • Keep it brief. Do not go into great detail about why you are missing work (such as a long list of your symptoms if you are sick or a detailed story about a personal problem). Instead, simply briefly state the day or days you will be absent, and explain (briefly) why.
  • Offer to help. You might consider helping make up for your absence in some way. For example, you might say that you will still be on email during your absence, or you might offer to work an extra hour or two later to complete some missed projects. If you can prepare your absence in advance, ask one or two of your colleagues or employees for help completing any assignments you will be missing. This will be particularly important when you are asking for a longer leave of absence.

Sample Formal Excuse Letter (After Missing Work)

Date
Employer's Name
Employer's Title
Organization
Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name:
Please accept this letter as formal notification that I was unable to attend work on September 1, 20XX due to illness. I have already completed the tasks for this week that I missed during my absence.
Please let me know if I can provide any further information. Thank you for understanding.
Sincerely,
Your Signature (hard copy letter)
Your Typed Name

Sample Formal Excuse Letter (Before Missing Work)

Date
Employer's Name
Employer's Title
Organization
Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name:
Please accept this letter as formal notification that I will be unable to attend work from September 1, 20XX to September 5, 20XX. I will be attending the professional development conference that I spoke with you about earlier this week.
I have arranged to be on email during work hours, and I will call and check in with the office once a day to see what I missed.
Please let me know if I can provide any further information, or if you need anything else from me to make my absence run smoothly. Thank you for allowing me to take this terrific opportunity.
Sincerely,
Your Signature (hard copy letter)
Your Typed Name

Sending an Email Message

If you would prefer to email your excuse, here's how to send your email message.
More Absence Excuse Letters


Employees may need to provide an excuse letter when they miss time from work to interview or for other reasons. Here are more sample excuse letters that can be edited to fit your personal circumstances.
Please Note: These samples are provided for guidance only. The provided information, including samples and examples, is not guaranteed for accuracy or legality. Letters and other correspondence should be edited to fit your personal situation.

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