An excuse letter for being absent from work is a letter an employee writes to their employer informing them they will be unable to attend work due to one reason or another. The letter will highlight the reason for missing work. An employee may miss work due to illness, an appointment, family issues, etc.
If you plan to miss work, it’s essential to inform your employer in writing, but note this may not work if you’re a habitual absentee.
How to Write an Excuse Letter
- The exact dates when you’ll be absent and when you’ll reassume work
- How you’ll compensate for the lost time
- Colleague or employee who’ll handle your tasks when away
- A letter from your doctor if you’re absent due to sickness
- A leave form if required
If you’re writing an intra-office letter, you should include the address of the recipient, maybe your supervisor or the human resources manager. Other important details that should feature in your excuse letter include:
- Subject line: the subject line should be indicated “absence excuse.”
- Salutation: use a formal greeting for your excuse letter such as “Dear [name of the recipient].”
- The body of the letter: use several paragraphs in the body of the letter to explain your absence from work. The date and duration of your absence, in addition to documents backing your excuse, should be highlighted in this section.
- Letter closing: use a polite letter closing to terminate your excuse letter. For example, you can use “Regards,” “Sincerely.”
Excuse Letter Format / Template
City, State Zip Code
Dear Mr. /Ms. [Last Name],
I write this letter to inform you I will be unable to attend work on [date] due to [reason]. In the meantime, [name of employee/colleague] will handle my tasks until I resume work.
Please let me know if you need further information about this issue.
I’m thanking you for your understanding.
You’re Signature (hard copy letter)
Sample Excuse Letter
January 7, 2020
Absuerd Corporation Inc.
340 Greener Lane
Los Angeles, CA 90011
Dear Mr. Johnson,
I’m writing this letter to inform you I will be absent from work on February 4, 2020. My firstborn son will be graduating from the University of Los Angeles, and I will be with him during this special day.
I’ll be available to make up for the lost time during the weekend if needed; please let me know in advance.
In case you need more details, feel free to speak to me about the issue.
Tips for Writing an Excuse Letter
- Adhere to your employer’s policies. When writing the letter, stick to your employer policies regarding absenteeism. For example, they may need you’re to send a hardcopy letter, an email, or call the office.
- Be professional. Since this is a formal letter, it should adopt the typical business letter format.
- Avoid being lengthy. Your excuse letter should be brief and to the point. Avoid irrelevant details in the letter — major on the dates, duration, and why you’ll be absent from work.
- Send the letter in time. Immediately you know you’ll not make it work; send the information to your employer to enable them to make necessary plans for someone to take care of your assignments.
- Offer assistance. If you ‘be away for several days, make arrangements on how your tasks will be handled. For example, you can ask a colleague to assist, or you can volunteer to work for extra hours once your resume work.