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November 07, 2021

Think twice before faking sick to get out of work: study

A quick show of hands: who out there has ever faked sick to get out of work?

Alright, well, sure, you’re not likely to admit as much despite such prompting, but faking sick is a tradition unlike any other. Faking sick is to getting out of work as demanding pop star paternity tests is to getting your name in the paper. It’s a slam dunk.

Though a new study, not surprisingly, warns that employers are ready and eager to can workers who claim they’re under the weather but can’t provide a legitimate excuse.

So, employees of Canada, let this be your warning. You’d better learn now how to forge that doctor’s note.

According to the survey, conducted recently by CareerBuilder.com, nearly three in ten workers in the U.S. called in sick with a fake excuse last year.

*Bing: The wildest “sick day” excuses ever given

Of those 30-odd per cent, 35 per cent didn’t even bother putting on a bogus sniffle or cough when notifying their bosses. They just emailed or texted in sick, instead.

Certainly, this comes as no surprise to you; think within even the past half-year and chances are you, or someone you know, has fired it up on a weekday or Sunday and decided ahead of time they’d be stepping out on work the next day.

Is this fair? Maybe. Even at a time when 7.3 per cent of the country can’t find a job, sick days are, in technicality, the workers’ rite. They are negotiated in labour deals and contracts, so why should the clear-sinused and fit not get to partake in spite of their fortunate health?

It’s a fair argument, though keep in mind many employers won’t be so understanding when faced with a questionable sick excuse.

By the survey’s findings, 15 per cent of employers said they’ve fired a worker for providing a fake sick excuse, and 28 per cent admitted to having checked up on employees taking sick leave, employing such methods as requiring a doctor’s note, calling them at home or driving by their house to see what’s what.

Have you ever used a sick day for something other than getting better? If so – and, remember, this is the Internet; it’s anonymous – what’s your favourite “fake sick” excuse?

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...