Question of the Week

What's the Most Bizarre Excuse You've Used/Heard to Call in Sick?


CareerBuilder reports this week that more and more workers are calling in sick with bizarre excuses, likely the result of worker burnout.

In its annual survey on absenteeism, CareerBuilder found that 29 percent of workers played hooky his year, calling in sick even when they were well.

Having a little fun with its survey, CareerBuilder also asked employers to name some of the most unusual excuses they’ve heard employees use when calling in sick. We enjoyed these gems:

  • 1. Employee said a chicken attacked his mom.
    2. Employee’s finger was stuck in a bowling ball.
    3. Employee had a hair transplant gone bad.
    4. Employee fell asleep at his desk while working and hit his head, causing a neck injury.
    5. Employee said a cow broke into her house and she had to wait for the insurance man.

These excuses and a story about a Dallas lawyer seeking a continuance for “very important baseball matters” made us wonder…

What are some of the most unusual excuses—real or bordering on ludicrous—you’ve heard or used to get out of coming into the office or going to court?

Answer in the comments.

Read answers to last week’s question: “Tell Us About Your Favorite Walk-In Client or Lucrative Chance Encounter”

Featured answer:

Posted by treasure hunter: “Several years ago an elderly, disheveled man walked into my office wanting to see a lawyer. Everyone else was at lunch. He spun a wild story about the gold his dad mined and hid somewhere on the family farm. I thought he was weaving a fantasy story until he pulled out several 4-pound ingots of pure gold. After some research, we learned that the tenants at Dad’s farm had found the stash and were busy converting them to Maple Leafs. We were able to recover about 1,200 of them and our fee was 400 Maple leafs. It was years ago and gold was ‘only’ 400 an ounce. Still a good fee!”

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