We’ve all been there – those days when you just need to leave work early and head home.

Maybe you’re feeling under the weather, dealing with a personal issue, or simply needing a break from the daily grind.

Whatever the reason, having a viable excuse can make the difference between your boss agreeing to your request and you staying stuck at your desk.

In this guide, we’ll explore 20+ good excuses to leave work early and go home, empowering you with the right reasons for those moments when you truly need it.

From personal health concerns to emergencies that demand immediate attention, the following list will cover various situations that could arise in your life and help you navigate them without compromising your professional standing.

Reasons to Consider Leaving Work Early


1. Health and Well-Being

Leaving work early is sometimes necessary for your health and well-being.

For instance, you might experience a sudden migraine or a stomach bug that makes it difficult for you to perform your tasks effectively.

Focusing on your job during these times may not be possible, and it would be better for both you and your boss if you were to go home and recover.

2. Family Emergencies

Family emergencies, such as a child falling ill or a family member getting into an accident, are valid reasons for you to leave work early.

These situations often require your immediate attention and support. Don’t hesitate to communicate your need to attend to a family emergency with your employer.

3. Home Emergencies

Home emergencies, like a burst pipe or a break-in, might also necessitate leaving work early.

These circumstances are often unforeseen and dealing with them promptly can prevent further damage or loss.

Inform your employer about the situation and make sure to cover any work-related responsibilities before leaving.

4. Professional Development

Attending seminars, workshops, or networking events that are relevant to your career can be considered a legitimate reason for leaving work early.

These activities contribute to your professional growth and can benefit both you and your employer in the long run.

Make sure to discuss this with your supervisor and arrange to have your work covered while you’re away.

5. Religious Observances

Lastly, certain religious observances may require you to leave work early. Some religious events occur during working hours, making it necessary for you to take time off.

Be open and respectful when discussing your need for accommodation with your employer, as they may be unaware of these specific religious practices.

Having a conversation about your requirements can help foster a more understanding workplace environment.

20+ Good Excuses to Leave Work Early

1. Medical Appointment

When you have a medical appointment scheduled, your employer will often understand the importance of taking care of your health.

Inform them in advance whenever possible and provide proof if required.

2. Dental Appointment

Similar to medical appointments, dental check-ups or treatments are necessary to maintain your oral health. Just remember to give your employer prior notice.

3. Migraine

If you’re experiencing a severe migraine, it’s tough to concentrate at work. As long as you don’t abuse this excuse, your employer should allow you to leave early and rest.

4. Upset Stomach

An upset stomach can cause discomfort and frequent trips to the restroom. It’s a valid reason to leave work early, giving you time to recover at home.

5. Menstrual Cramps

For women, menstrual cramps can cause severe pain and discomfort. Leaving work early to manage this pain is understandable, but don’t overuse it.

6. Personal Illness

If you feel sick or have cold/flu symptoms, leaving work early helps you recover and prevents spreading germs among your coworkers.

7. Sick Child

When your child is ill, it’s important to take care of them. Your employer should understand the need to leave work early for this reason.

8. Family Emergency

A family emergency may require your immediate attention. Be honest about the situation and keep your employer informed.

9. Home Emergency

Situations like a flood, fire, or gas leak demand urgent action. Your employer will likely be supportive of you leaving work early to address these issues.

10. Car Trouble

If you’re having car trouble, leaving work early allows you time to get it fixed without causing disruption to the next working day.

11. Professional Development Course

Attending a course, workshop, or seminar can enhance your skills and benefit your employer. Ensure you communicate the value of this opportunity before leaving work early.

12. Religious Observance

Your employer should respect your religious beliefs, and scheduling time off for related observances is accepted in most workplaces.

13. Home Invasion

A break-in at your home requires immediate action, such as contacting the police and assessing the damage. Inform your employer about the situation when leaving early.

14. Burst Pipe

A burst pipe at home may cause water damage, and attending to it quickly can prevent further problems. Your employer should understand your need to leave.

15. Gas Leak

A gas leak at home poses a risk to you and your family’s safety. It’s crucial to leave work early to address this emergency.

16. House Fire

In the event of a house fire, your safety and the safety of your family and belongings is most important. Your employer should be understanding of your need to leave work early.

17. Important Delivery

Sometimes, we need to be present for deliveries that can’t be rescheduled. While it’s not an ideal reason, employers might accommodate your request if it’s a one-time occurrence.

18. Babysitter/Daycare Emergency

An emergency with your babysitter or daycare requires you to leave work early to ensure your child is safe and cared for.

19. Unexplained Emergency

Occasionally, you might face a personal emergency that you don’t feel comfortable discussing with your employer.

Most employers will respect your privacy and allow time off for unexplained emergencies.

20. Appliance Delivery

If you have a major appliance being delivered to your home, it’s important to be present to verify the item and oversee installation.

Your employer may understand the need to leave work early for this reason.

How to Request Leaving Work Early

Talk to Your Boss

When you need to leave work early, it’s important to approach your boss with a valid excuse. Ideally, choose a time when both of you are free and not overwhelmed with tasks.

Briefly explain your situation and the reason behind your request, making sure to maintain a polite and professional tone.

Remember, honesty is the best policy – if your boss senses that you’re being truthful, they’re more likely to accommodate your request.

Company Policy

Before you plan on leaving work early, familiarize yourself with your company’s policy on taking time off or leaving early.

Consult your employee handbook or the HR department for information on the protocols you need to follow.

Adhering to these guidelines will ensure that you maintain a professional image and avoid any negative repercussions.

  • Review your company’s policy on early departures.
  • Check if your company requires any approvals or specific processes to request leaving early.
  • Understand the acceptable reasons and any restrictions in place.

Hybrid Work Arrangements

If your company offers hybrid work arrangements, you can consider leveraging this flexibility to manage your time better.

In such cases, you can request to work from home for half the day and leave work early, if needed. This can be especially helpful if you have personal appointments that are hard to schedule around your work hours.

Additionally, it can help you complete your tasks without having to take a full day off.

To make your leave work early request:

  1. Select a valid excuse from the various options available.
  2. Choose a suitable time to talk to your boss about your request.
  3. Understand and adhere to your company’s policy on leaving work early.
  4. Consider hybrid work arrangements, if available, as an alternative option.

Important Tips and Reminders

Be Honest and Professional

When you need to leave work early, make sure to present your reason clearly and honestly.

Whether it’s for personal reasons, medical reasons, or career development, your employer likely understands that life happens outside of work.

Be respectful of their time and avoid making exaggerated or false claims.

Avoid Abusing Your Privileges

It’s important to recognize that leaving work early should not be a habitual occurrence.

Balancing your personal life and work is crucial, but abusing your manager’s trust might lead to a negative impact on your overall productivity.

Keep your requests for early departures to a minimum and only when truly necessary.

Consider the Impact on Your Team

Before asking to leave early, consider how your absence may affect your team. Will your early departure leave others with extra work, or can you complete essential tasks before you go?

If you’re leaving due to medical reasons, let your team members know in advance (if possible) to help them plan accordingly.

  • Personal reasons: A family emergency or an urgent personal matter may require your immediate attention. Be sure to communicate with your team and provide any necessary handover information.
  • Career development: Occasionally, opportunities for professional growth may arise, such as attending a workshop or seminar, that could lead to leaving work early. Make sure to communicate the benefits to your team and plan accordingly.
  • Medical reasons: If you’re feeling unwell or have a medical appointment, inform your team as soon as possible to ensure a smooth transition during your absence.
  • Productivity: Sometimes, leaving early can be beneficial for your overall productivity. Maybe you need a mental health day, a change of scenery, or a break from a hectic work environment. Explain this to your team to ensure they understand and can make necessary adjustments.

Communication is key when balancing your professional and personal life.

By being honest, professional, and considerate of your team, you can ensure a successful and supportive work environment.

Key Takeaways

Here are some good excuses to leave work early and go home that you can consider when needed:

  • Health-related excuses: Sometimes, your physical and mental health should take priority over work. Examples of health-related excuses are migraines, bad headaches, and menstrual cramps. Remember not to overuse these excuses, and take into consideration that your well-being is essential.
  • Family emergencies: Unexpected situations involving your family members may require you to leave work early. Illnesses, injuries, or a death in the family are all valid reasons for needing to prioritize attending to your loved ones.
  • Home issues: Experiencing problems at home might lead you to leave work early. Examples include home invasion, break-in security alarms, important deliveries, or repair appointments that can’t be scheduled for another time.
  • Appointments and errands: Sometimes, you might have pre-scheduled appointments that need your attention. These can range from doctors’ appointments, dental emergencies, or getting your car fixed. Be sure to communicate with your manager about these situations as needed.

When using these excuses, it’s crucial to be honest and sincere with your employer.

Overusing excuses or fabricating reasons can damage your credibility and harm your professional reputation.

Always be aware of your workplace policies and consider the potential consequences of your decision to leave work early.

Remember to communicate clearly and respectfully with your manager, keeping their perspective in mind as well.