Work excuse letter (guide & samples)

This post covers work excuse letter.

You are not a robot, sometimes you may need to take a break from the working atmosphere with or without a solid reason- a doctor’s appointment, a sick day, personal stuff, etc.

How do you tell your boss?

Write a work excuse letter.

A work excuse letter is a formal and effective way to ask for an excuse from your boss whenever you feel like being absent from your workplace.

In this post, I will guide you on everything you need to know about work excuse letter including;

  • what is a work excuse letter
  • why do you need it?
  • How do you write an effective work excuse letter for an important matter?
  • a work excuse letter template
  • a work excuse letter samples
  • etc.

let’s get started

What is a work excuse letter?

A work excuse letter is a brief statement of facts written by an employee to an employer to ask for an excuse to be absent from work due to some emergencies or any other personal issues.

Employees should send the excuse letter as soon as possible, preferably before missing work, in order to request permission.

However, if an employee is unable to attend work for urgent reasons,  it is possible to send an excuse letter only after being absent.

Employers usually don’t need an entire essay explaining why you have to miss work, but they do need the basics.

This letter is simply to notify your boss of when and why you will be absent.

Why do you need a work excuse letter?

A work excuse letter is a letter that you write to your employer when you intend to be absent (in most cases) or have already been absent (in some cases) from work.

Therefore a well-written work excuse letter will;

  • Serve as a record of your absence
  • It helps to settle disagreements about your absences (if the situation ever arises)
  • Demonstrate your sincerity, as well as your understanding of the value of time and concern for the inconvenience caused by your absence
  • Help you to comply with your employer’s absence from work policies.

When do you need a work excuse letter?

Every company has specific procedures and reasons for employees missing work.

Before writing your letter, you should double-check the procedures in the employee handbook to determine whether you need to inform your boss and how you should go about doing so (e.g., a phone call, a letter, an email)

When a letter is required, the organization specifies what it should contain and who should receive it. Also, Consider how far in advance you should notify your employer.

It is important to understand company policy and what constitutes a legitimate excuse from work. Some excuses for missing work may be denied by your employer.

The following are examples of legitimate reasons for an excused absence from work:

  • Your sick
  • There is a family emergency;  death, someone is sick, etc.
  • Home emergence (something needs to be repaired)
  • Your child or close relative requires unexpected assistance.
  • You’re recognizing a religious holiday.
  • You have a doctor’s appointment.
  • You are taking a vacation/personal day (if applicable to company policy).
  • Jury duty
  • Personal reasons (you don’t need to share details)
  • etc.

How to write a work excuse letter

A work excuse letter is written in business letter format. Begin your letter with your address and contact information, followed by a date and the address of the employer, and state that you are writing to ask for an excuse to be absent from work. Provide the date ad the reasons for being absent. Finish with “Sincerely,” followed by your name and signature.

REMEMBER! The purpose of a work excuse letter is to notify your boss of when and why you will be absent.

So, in order to write an effective work excuse letter, do the following;

  • Provide your name, address, contact information, and job title.
  • Include the date of the letter
  • Include the employer’s address
  • Clearly state the reasons for being absent
  • Provide the dates that you will be away
  • Provide the details of how you will be reachable when you are away
  • If applicable state who will take care of your duties when you are away
  • Attach documents, records, or other documentation for easy reference.
  • Be straightforward
  • Maintain a professional tone
  • Be honest

other helpful tips

  • Deliver your letter as soon as possible.
  • Comply with organization policy as far as work excuses are concerned
  • If applicable Request to work remotely.

A work excuse letter template

Your Name
Your Street Address
City, State, Zip Code


[Recipient’s Name]
[Recipient’s Position]
[Name of the organization]
[organization’s Street Address]
[organization’s City, State, and Zip Code]

Dear Mr./Ms. [Recipient Last Name,]

Please accept this letter as written notice that I was/will be unable to attend work on/from [start date] to [end date] due to [reasons for absence].

[Your colleague’s name] will cover my duties while I am away. In case of an emergency, please contact me at [email/phone].

Thank you for understanding.

Best regards,

[Your Signature]
[Your Name]

A work excuse letter due to emergency

The following is a sample excuse letter for being absent from work due to an emergency;

NB: this letter is suitable to use after being absent. For the sample before being absent, check the next section.

Harris Kelly
Sales officer
200 West Town
City boys, CA 56746

December 30, 20…

Joyce Kimberly
General Manager
Sweet Home logistics
123 Home street
Downtown, CA 68795

Dear Ms. Kimberly

With all due respect, I’d like to express my heartfelt apologies for being unable to attend work from December 25 to December 29, 20… because I needed to take my son to have his leg set after an injury in his baseball game on December 24 night. (Please see the attached pediatric orthopedist documentation. Let me know if you require any additional information.)

I apologize for the delays and inconvenience caused to the company and colleagues. I am aware of all pending tasks and  I  will work hard (extra hours and weekends) to finish them as soon as possible.

Thank you for your patience and understanding on this matter.


Harris Kelly

Work excuse letter for a dental appointment

James King
Data Clerk
200 Data Avenue
Home city, CA 57788

December 28, 20…

Bob Blair
Human Resource Manager,
ABC Technologies
756 Tech street
Downtown, CA 68648

Dear Mr. Blair

Please accept this letter as written notice that I will be unable to attend my job on December 31, 20… due to a dental appointment on the same day.

While I am away, John Kennedy will take over my responsibilities.

In the event of an emergency, please contact me at the above-mentioned email or phone number.

Thanks for understanding

Best regards

James King

Isack Kimaro

Editor-in-chief and founder of Holder of Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) and Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. Lawyer by profession and blogger by passion.

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