Long Term Absence Excuse Letter

A long-term absence excuse letter is written by an employee or a student to relevant authorities at work or school to provide a reason for absence highlighting the strategies to make up for the missed work or commitment. By documenting the absence of excuse, professional conduct and a sense of responsibility are reflected. The letter could be written for fatal injury, acute medical illness, personal reasons, or maternal/paternal responsibility. The letter serves to create an understanding between employee and employer, or student and instructor as it communicates the reason for absence without causing any inconvenience at work or school.

For a long absence, it is important to notify the employer or school authorities beforehand. Without getting the consent or approval of the relevant authorities, the contract of an employee could be terminated or the student could be dismissed from the school. The duration of long absence can vary as per the respective company or institute. But, most of the companies define it to be as an off time from work for four or more weeks, while for the schools it could mean an absence beyond three to four days.  Therefore, an excuse letter must be written to seek approval for absence. 

At some point in time, employees and students need to make an absence excuse for an extended period by providing legitimate reasoning. Such a reason could be;

  • Medical illness – This could be availed due to an acute medical condition, infection, disease, or surgery. The long term absence due to sickness requires an employee or a student to provide a medical report and communicate a probable timeline of returning to work or school. The illness is often inspected, in terms if it is a consequence of occupational or institutional health hazard. For an illness occurring during occupational activities or institutional hazards, the protocol to seek an absence excuse may vary.
  • Personal reason – The death of an immediate family member or the wedding of an employee or student can call for time off from work or academic institute. This, however, is barely inspected for authenticity, and leave is granted based on the company’s or institute’s policy.
  • Maternal/Paternal responsibilities – At the birth of a child, miscarriage, or abortion, it is common practice to grant maternal leaves to the employee with or without entitled benefits as a part of the company’s policy.
  • Educational Opportunity – Different schools offer a cultural exchange or student exchange opportunities to the students. Any of the students, eligible to apply for the program, could apply for such opportunities and may get selected. It should be communicated to the teachers or principle in order for them to keep it in the record and provide compensation for it.

Before writing a long absence letter, the following things are required to be considered:

For Workplace

  • Company Policy: An employee or the student needs to be aware of the company’s and school’s policy for acquiring leaves. Most of the companies have an employee leave entitlements, under which the number of leaves the employee is entitled to be clearly mentioned or communicated. Some companies require their employees to put up a request a few days before the date of not showing up at work.  Moreover, the employee must have a clear understanding of paid and unpaid absences. The employee benefits are service and contract bound, hence it is vital for the employee to familiarize himself/herself on the kinds of benefits the company would either provide or take away in case of a long absence.
  • Consultation with the supervisor or human resource manager: Preparing a work plan with a supervisor or manager before making an absence excuse can sustain operations of the team or department without causing any inconvenience or hassle. The work plan should be made in consultation with the supervisor, manager and team members to avoid future trouble during the absence.
  • Sharing updates: In a few cases, the employee may work remotely, without showing up at the workplace. In such cases, the employee needs to develop a framework for sharing regular updates with the team

For School

  • Long-absence Request Policy – Schools require students and parents to acquire a formal request form from the school to officially apply for the absence in case of a long absence. This needs to be taken seriously, because the school may dismiss the student or deregister if an absence request has not been forwarded on time and approval for it has not been sought.
  • Teacher’s Recommendation – Before writing a formal absence excuse letter, the student should take an appointment with the teacher and discuss the subject in question. But in cases like injury, sickness, or death of a family member, the student needs to take the teacher in confidence to ensure the continuity of academic activities after recovery or situation normalization.

An absence excuse letter, therefore, needs to be well-structured and in compliance with the considerations mentioned above. Following guidelines can help in writing an effective long absence excuse letter:

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  • Providing a legitimate reason – the letter must highlight the valid reason for absence. The reasons could be any of the reasons mentioned earlier.
  • Understanding of Company’s Policy/School’s Absent Request Policy – an employee or student should have a complete understanding of the respective policy. It could help in strengthening the absence excuse case by providing a reference to the clause or article of the policy.
  • Professional and formal letter body – the letter should address the reason and the relevant details pertaining to the subject in question. Irrelevant details can put off the purpose and the chance to be granted an excuse may perish.
  • Work Compensation Strategy – the strategy to make up for the missed work should be highlighted in the letter to provide a reader with a clear understanding of alternate measures or appropriate arrangements required to be made.
  • Supporting documents – when requested or required, an employee or the student must provide the supporting documents as evidence for the long absence to avoid the risk of severe consequences.
  • Closing of the letter – the letter should be closed at a humble note, by making a request to be excused and by asking for any other information required on the subject, from the respective employee or student.

Sample Letters

Absence Excuse due to Acute Medical Condition

Please accept this letter as official documentation of my absence from work during the last 2 weeks on account of my heart condition. I have been on leave from 29th May till the 9th of June following an angina attack.

I have been hospitalized for a week to be kept under observation along with treatment. The doctor advised further rest for 4 to 5 days at home upon my discharge.

Please find enclosed the physician’s prescription and my medical reports. I am grateful for your cooperation during my absence and thank you for your kindness.


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad Size 16 Kb | Download

Absence Excuse due to Musculoskeletal Injuries

I am writing to officially report my absence from work for the last 10 days due to a musculoskeletal injury. I developed RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) owing to a strenuous workout at the gym. The affected areas included my neck, shoulders, and back.

I have been under physiotherapy along with pain-relieving medicines. I am still in the recovery phase and may need another week off as advised by the physician. I have requested Mr. XYZ to fill in for me during my absence. He has been kind enough to take care of my assignments while I have been away and has promised to continue with them until I return.

I have enclosed my medical reports. Please let me know if you need further information.

I am highly obliged for your cooperation.


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad Size 17 Kb | Download

Absence Excuse due to Stress

This is my official leave request for 2 weeks starting from 2nd July to 17th July. I have been under a lot of work stress during our 6 months long XYZ project. It has taken a toll on my mental health. I, therefore, request you to excuse me from work for the mentioned period of time.

I really need this break in order to rejuvenate my mental energy which in turn would boost my motivation and passion towards work.

It will be very kind of you to approve my leave.


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad Size 13 Kb | Download

Absence Excuse due to Mental Ill Health

This is my written excuse for my absence from the office for the last 10 days. I have been suffering from clinical depression. My condition has been affecting my productivity at work. The supervisor, Mr. XYZ himself suggested that I should take a few days off to undergo treatment.

This mental issue began a month ago after my elder brother passed away. I have not been able to cope with the loss and it resulted in severe depression for me.

I am currently under treatment. I request you for an additional leave of a week from work. I need to overcome this illness completely so that I can regain my focus and motivation towards work.

Your compassion and cooperation will be highly appreciated.


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad Size 17 Kb | Download

Absence Excuse due to Back pain

Please accept this as my official notification of leave from office for a week. I have been experiencing back pain since I had a car accident last week.

Although there have been no serious injuries, the physical shock from the accident resulted in severe back pain. I am on complete bed rest now.

You will find attached the doctor’s note. Please contact me if further information is required.

I thank you for your kindness.


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad Size 16 Kb | Download

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