Best reason for emergency leave (list)

Best reason for emergency leave

In this guide, we will discuss “the best reason for emergency leave”, some of the worst reasons and tips on how to request emergency leave.

Best reason for emergency leave

Here are some of the best reasons for emergency leave:

  • Feeling unwell/sick 
  • A house emergency such as a broken boiler or a flooded bathroom.
  • A family emergency such as having a relative in the hospital, an accident or a deteriorating health condition.
  • The death of someone you love.

We all have faced the time off situation that requires to take some time off, but sometimes it may not be a valid or good reason for our employer.

For instance, if you get a call for an interview from that job you have been waiting to hear from or you just recently broke up with your partner.

Telling your boss may not be an option, and it may actually end up hurting your career. We just mentioned a few of the excuses or reasons for emergency leave but we will also discuss bad excuses and funny ones. 

Best reason for emergency leave (list)

If we think about what makes an excuse ‘good’, we would actually have to use our common sense.

However, some people may try to use excuses as a habit to keep skipping work constantly there will be a time where they either lose their jobs or simply run out of excuses.

For instance, if you call in sick every 2 weeks (just because you were partying late at night, had too much to drink and now you are dealing with the consequences), your employer may start to investigate a bit deeper and suspect this behavioral pattern and may decide to act on it.

Moreover, we could mention some other good excuses such as having financial planner, accountant or a lawyer appointment, babysitter problems, delivery of appliances or other major purchase, medical tests or medical procedures, having a migraine, the school is closed, a new baby in the family, etc.

What makes a ‘good’ excuse?

So let’s start by saying all good excuses can be considered as genuine and honest.

For instance, you may not have a life-threatening condition if you have the flu but it is good enough to want to go home and take the rest of the day off to get better. 

In addition, a good excuse is also believable.

Your employer is more likely to accept and believe what you are telling is the truth if what you are saying does not resemble a scene from a horror movie.

Here we will talk more in-depth about the best reason for emergency leave we have mentioned earlier.

  1. Feeling unwell/sick

If you are feeling unwell or you are sick with the flu or a stomach bug, tell your boss (or someone you trust at work).

Everyone at work can actually see if you are feeling unwell or sick so it is sufficient and believable enough. Check the policy with a colleague, your HR department or directly with your boss.

  1. A house emergency

This is one of the less believable reasons unless you have proof. Pictures or videos about your bathroom flooding or your broken boiler.

It can happen as well that your house could have some structural damage or might be infested.

These things don’t tend to happen all the time and if you haven’t used it before then it can help you get some time off work (especially if you have proof about it).

Your employer will have to understand this is something unusual and grant you permission to go home and take care of it.

Best reason for emergency leave (list)
  1. A family emergency

This is a very common, yet powerful reason to ask for emergency leave.

If you have kids then it is normal they could get sick or require extra attention, also if your spouse or your parents have a serious health problem or have been in an accident. 

However, this not meant to be used to make your child sick every week or some other relative since it could get you in a lot of trouble.

Remember good reasons are meant to be honest, genuine and believable.

  1. Death of a loved one

We are not exempt from this kind of situation ever happening to us.

I vividly remember getting a call where my grandma was very sick and she didn’t have much time left so the family was reunited around her bed to say goodbye.

I was working at the time so I had to get the courage to tell my boss my grandma was dying.

They didn’t ask many questions and they said I could take the rest of the day off (paying back for the time of course) and then that afternoon she passed away.

For my employer, it started as an emergency leave and then it turned into a 5 day ‘morning period’ the company paid for after showing evidence of the death certificate.

Make sure, if you’ll ever use this excuse, to be true since they may ask you for proof.

However, the word loved one is not only referring to relatives. We could also be talking about a best friend or a really close friend you lost contact with recently.

Check your company policies because they may vary in terms of who is this type of ‘emergency leave’ extended to (e.g. only relatives).

What is a bad excuse?

You can probably make a list of some really bad excuses, those you wouldn’t even believe yourself.

These types of excuses are very common and easy to think of when we let our imagination and desperation meet. 

As mentioned by ‘Cleverism’, “Some of the worst reasons for skipping work are the actual truths.

But the truth is sometimes ugly and you’d be better off using one of the above excuses then blasting out one of the ‘truths’ from below.”

So, what are the common factors around bad excuses? Well, first of all, they are lazy. They become pretty lazy (and lame) because we don’t even think we have to try that hard or even feel guilty for missing work.

In addition, they are hazy and sometimes it even creates more confusion (with a bunch of unanswered questions) because you are not even having a straight storyline.

This is why you would like to avoid using any of the following excuses if you want to keep having a good relationship with your boss and stay at your current job.

Best reason for emergency leave (list)
  1. Someone’s death  

As we have mentioned this is one of the good excuses but when it is not a fake death. One thing is to say your mom is sick (every now and then) but another is to say she died.

We all know stories of a co-worker that has used the same excuse (the death of the same relative) as emergency leave and to remain absent from work for the following days.

Try to think about something else instead of killing someone from your family (even if it is fake) over and over again.

The lie may catch up with you and backfire, leaving you without a job.

  1. Feeling tired/Being hungover

Yes, it is a pretty lame and unprofessional type of excuse. Some people will not even hesitate in telling their boss they are too hungover to work and they expect it to be considered an ‘emergency’.

The truth is that if you go to work with a hungover, it may even mean a lot of trouble to you since there are some strict company policies regarding an employee going to work intoxicated. 

Also, feeling tired because you had a crazy night and slept just a few hours is also not a good reason to miss work.

Think about it next time you decide to stay up late during workdays.

  1. The pressure cooker exploded

This is one of the bad and craziest (even if it is a possibility it may happen to you).

Telling your boss the pressure cooker had exploded and scared your sister and that is why you need to go home immediately to be with her is just a very bad and lame excuse to get off work early, not believable at all. 

  1. You ate cat food instead of tuna

Alright, everyone can make a mistake from time to time but you really had to have a huge lack of attention when getting the ‘tuna’ into your plate (not reading the can or seeing the cat in the image) and taking a bite without even spitting it out when feeling its taste.

No one will buy that, honestly. 

Best reason for emergency leave (list)

How can I write a good excuse note or email?

Here are some quick tips, you would like to consider when writing a good excuse note or email due to emergency leave.

  • Keep your email or note brief and as professional as possible.
  • Mention the reason why you need to leave early and when you will be available.
  • Have a discussion with your line manager as soon as possible and make sure to write a note following up on the conversation. 

Why is this blog about ‘best reason for emergency leave’ important?

We have reviewed some of the best reasons for emergency leave as well as some of the bad ones.

We understand sometimes we just need a break from work and we think about making any type of excuse just to get out.

Remember that having too many excuses can send the signal to your employer that you don’t actually want to be working for them anymore. 

Also, remember to let your employer know as soon as you find out about the emergency and send a note following up on the conversation, make sure you are honest and believable since it is probable your employer knows most of the excuses out there and can even know when an employee is lying. 

Please feel free to leave any comments or thoughts about the content of this article!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the best reason for emergency leave

What is a good excuse to miss work?

Good excuses to miss work should be real and genuine.

If you have to miss work because you are sick or you need half-day off because you have a family emergency or something else that really requires your attention, make sure to talk to your line manager/supervisor to discuss it.

Remember that just feeling a bit tired, having a minor cough or just not wanting to go to work are not good excuses to miss work.

What are the reasons to take leave?

Here are 7 (justifiable) reasons to take leave:

– Family commitments or emergency.

– Taking care of your health or a relative’s health condition.

– Taking advantage of good weather.

– If you are feeling stress is too overwhelming.

– You keep pushing your vacation time.

– You have to take care of your home (e.g. leaking pipe, flooding, etc.)

– You feel like you can’t concentrate anymore or perform at your best.

How do I ask my boss for emergency leave?

If you want to ask your boss for emergency leave consider:

– Reviewing your company policies.

– Mention the exact start date and when you are expected to return.

– Delegate responsibilities properly.

– Include a subject line.

– Be honest, clear and concise.

– Explain the reason why but don’t be too detailed.

– Keep a professional and polite tone.

What are good family emergency excuses?

Family emergency excuses involve the death of a relative or a deteriorating health condition from a family member who needs you to take care of them Also, it could happen that your husband or one of your kid’s needs someone to look after them because they are sick, have a long-term health condition or are in the hospital due to an accident or an emergency surgery.

How do I excuse myself at work?

If you need to excuse yourself from work or leave early make sure you have a discussion with your boss.

If you need to be absent from work because you have been feeling unwell or you have a house emergency such as a broken boiler or a flooded bathroom.

Make sure to inform your employer as soon as possible.

In addition, you could be having a family emergency such as having a sick relative or someone having an accident.


Luenendonk, M. (2018, Feb.) 12 Excuses for Missing Work. Retrieved from

Doyle, A. (2019, Dec.) Excuses for Missing Work (Good and Bad Reasons). Retrieved from

Best reason for emergency leave (list)

Daniela Paez

Daniela Paez is a Clinical Psychologist with an MSc. In Clinical Neuropsychology from Bangor University. She has vast experience in working with children with disabilities, adolescents and their families, in extreme conditions of poverty and vulnerability. Additionally, she owns a private practice where she provides neuropsychological evaluation for children and adults, and treatment for mood disorders, anxiety, couple therapy, among other conditions.