How to ask for bereavement leave: funeral excuse letter for work

How to ask for bereavement leave: funeral excuse letter for work

Losing a loved one is never easy. Although we all know that death is inevitable, it still hits us hard when we lose someone we thought would be around forever. One of the ways to get closure after suffering a loss is being at their funeral. Knowing how to write a funeral excuse letter for work comes in handy when the need arises.

funeral excuse letter for work
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Source: Original

Most companies are very sympathetic if one of their employees is in such a situation. Therefore the chances of them declining your request are low. However, it is better to err on the side of caution and be as professional and as honest as you can.

Writing a funeral excuse letter for work

There are several things that should make an appearance in your funeral excuse letter. Failure to include them could communicate an absolute lack of professionalism to your superiors, which may reduce the chances of your letter being accepted. It is therefore vital to keep the following tips in mind when writing your letter:

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1. How much time you will need

This is very important because your employers should know how long you are going to be out of the office. This will enable them to plan how the workflow will continue to run smoothly even in your absence.

You should include actual dates so that your employers can know when to expect you back. If you are uncertain as to how many days you may require, it is better to err on the higher side. This will let you take any amount of time you need to grieve without worrying about your job.

2. Name of the deceased and how you are related

Including the name of the deceased adds a personal touch to your letter. You should also include the relation you have to the deceased and any other relevant information. A closer relationship means that you will need more time as you may be in charge of the funeral arrangements and your employers should know this.

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3. Suggestions on how your workload could be handled

If you are unable to complete all your pending projects before you leave, you should suggest a course of action that could be taken about them. This will ensure that your employers cannot deny your request by claiming that your absence will interrupt the workflow. It also shows your dedication to your job and makes it clear that you wouldn't be leaving unless it was necessary.

4. Type of letter

The letter can either be an email or a physical copy. If you want to present a physical copy, ensure that you type it and then print it. Avoid handwritten letters as those are not very professional.

Sample funeral excuse letter for work

excuse letter for work
Source: UGC

Every absence letter follows the same format regardless of the reason for the absence. Below is a sample you can use as a funeral excuse letter for work template to write your letter.

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Mary Jane

P.O.BOX 123

22nd May 2020

The Human Resource Officer

Smith Communications

Dear Mr Evans

I'm writing to inform you of the unfortunate death of my father and would like to take some time off for the funeral. I will fly out today and plan to be out of town for two weeks to take care of all the funeral arrangements.

I will miss some project deadlines during this period and would appreciate it if someone were to oversee my projects in my absence. I will ensure that I make all efforts to catch up once I resume my duties on 5th May.

Thank you for your assistance during this time.

Yours Sincerely,

Mary Jane

You can use this funeral excuse letter for work sample and replace the details with those that are relevant to your case.

Drafting an excuse letter for when you cannot attend a funeral due to work

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When someone who meant a lot to you passes away, you will do all you can to be able to pay your respects personally. Sometimes, this is not possible due to many reasons, mostly work. In such a case, you will need to write an apology letter with your condolences for the bereaved. This is primarily the case when the deceased was not very close to you. When writing your excuse letter for the funeral due to work use the following tips:

  • Write a handwritten letter as it is more personal.
  • Make the letter short and to the point, which is emphasizing your sympathy.
  • Be honest about what your reasons for missing the funeral are
  • Try to schedule some time with the family at a later date when you will be available.
  • Reassure the bereaved that you are there for them

Bereavement leave sample letter

funeral excuse letter due to work
Source: UGC

Remember to include all the need to know when writing your funeral excuse letter for work, and everything else will fall into place. Giving your loved one a proper sendoff is a vital thing to do, not only for them but also for yourself. This is why it is very important to be there either physically, or by sending an apology letter to the bereaved if you are unable to make it.

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Sample 1

Dear Carol,

I was very sorry to hear the news of Joe's death yesterday. He was such a gentle soul, and I still remember the time we spent together and how much I learned from him.

Unfortunately due to some prior commitments I made at work on the other side of the world, I cannot make it to the funeral. Please accept my sincerest apologies. You and your family are in my heart during this challenging time. Joe will be greatly missed.

With love,


Sample 2

Dear [Employer],

I am writing to request a bereavement leave from [start date] to [end date] due to the recent loss of my [relationship to deceased], [name of deceased]. This has been a difficult time for me and my family, and I would greatly appreciate your understanding and support during this period.

I understand that the company policy on bereavement leave allows for [number of days] days of leave for the loss of an immediate family member. As [name of deceased] was a member of my immediate family, I would like to request [number of days] days of leave to attend to funeral arrangements, spend time with my family, and grieve this loss.

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I have already spoken with my team members and have made arrangements to ensure that my work will be covered during my absence. I will also make sure to tie up any loose ends before my departure and will be available to provide any necessary support to my team during this time.

Thank you for your understanding and support during this difficult time. Please let me know if there are any further steps I need to take to request this leave or any documentation that needs to be provided.


[Your Name]

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