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To ask for advice about ringing in sick to attend a job interview

(145 Posts)
Winterjoy Mon 27-Jul-15 19:12:18

Ok, I know its very wrong but I have to do it - environment/management at current job has driven me to the brink of a breakdown, to the point where I spent each morning having a panic attack as I walked down the road leading up to the building. I have finally got to the point where I feel mentally strong enough to apply/interview for new roles and after a number of failed applications over the last 6 or so months, have finally been invited an interview later this week.....

Unfortunately there is NO WAY to take leave on this date, and no way to change the interview date. So, I have resolved to call in sick (feel terrible about this) but am now panicking about:

1) If offered position new employer will check sick dates as part of reference and withdraw offer as a result

2) At interview I will be asked about how it is possible to attend i.e. am I on leave?

Any advice?

MaidOfStars Mon 27-Jul-15 19:17:10

1. Possible. Is your sick record OK?
2. Unlikely. I would never even think to ask this.

babybat Mon 27-Jul-15 19:18:09

I've never been asked at an interview how it was possible for me to attend. The reason they ask for your sickness absence is to check it falls within an acceptable range (I.e. you don't have an undisclosed chronic health condition). I really doubt they'd care that you told you soon to be ex-company that you were sick.

Gem124 Mon 27-Jul-15 19:18:18

I don't think it's the right way to go about things but a potential employer wouldn't check specific sick day dates or inquire as to how you got the time off as it's irrelevant to the interview & job.

itsmeitscathy Mon 27-Jul-15 19:19:14

it's a bad idea, it could bite you especially if you don't get the job

Altinkum Mon 27-Jul-15 19:20:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Salmotrutta Mon 27-Jul-15 19:23:39

I though people were entitled to have time off for interviews?

Am I wrong then?

DurhamDurham Mon 27-Jul-15 19:25:39

They would be unlikely to withdraw an offer just because of a few days sickness spread over a long period of time.

They are very unlikely to ask how you managed to arrange things to get to the interview. I've been involved in lots of interviews and we have set questions to ask and then the answers are marked using a points system.

I'd do the same as you, it's not ideal but sometimes it's just got to be done.

Good luck smile

HermioneWeasley Mon 27-Jul-15 19:25:51

No, you are not entitled to time off for interviews unless you are being made redundant

KittensOnAPlane Mon 27-Jul-15 19:26:18

You're not entitled to time off for interview unless you are at risk of redundancy and have been employed for more than 2 yrs

EmeraldKitten Mon 27-Jul-15 19:30:27

I highly doubt your new employer would care about the fact that you pulled a sickie to attend their interview. I've also never know any employer to question how you're able to attend.

I really wouldn't worry about it from that perspective.

With your current employer though, what is the worst case if you didn't get the job and they found out you'd pulled a sickie? How long have you been there?

I was caught once pulling a sickie (kids sports day won). I'd been there 8 years and they knew my worth - I got no more than the minimum my manager could get away with which was a 35 second bollocking for show and the request of an acceptable date I could work the time back.

If the possible repercussions aren't that bad, just do it.

Viviennemary Mon 27-Jul-15 19:30:58

I don't think this is a good idea at all. What about saying you need the time off for an appointment and you'll make the time up. I don't think they'll ask you at the interview how you got the time off. It's a risk saying you are sick and then go for an interview. If you can think of another way that would be better. IMHO.

Winterjoy Mon 27-Jul-15 19:31:05

I absolutely know it is a bad idea, and feel terrible about going through with it

- but -

I have to get away from the environment, it is destroying my mental health. It took a long time to build the strength to see a way forward and start fighting for a new position. I am feeling at the moment that since I have been applying since the beginning of the year and this is only the second interview offered, if I miss this one it could potentially be the new year before another opportunity presents (by which time I could have dropped back to despair).

Littleorangecat Mon 27-Jul-15 19:39:05

I did this many many years ago when I had an interview for s new company.... I walked into the hotel where the interviews were being held and my area manager and company Vice President from my current employers (at the time) were sat in the hotel lobby, drinking coffee and sorting staff performance reviews!!!
Both recognised me and asked me why I was there. I had to tell the truth and was in such a bad state I completely cocked up my interview as I couldn't think straight and was virtually in tears!! It was bloody awful and just for this reason I would recommend that you don't lie about being off sick as I had to return to my old job and explain myself which was pretty humiliating.

Winterjoy Mon 27-Jul-15 19:42:04

At current job for ~5 years, have good sickness record (just a few odd days), I work way above and beyond my remit and am valued highly in terms of productivity

Have not asked for leave, but because of the way it is allocated absolutely know it is not possible

Unlikely current employer would find out either way, and am largely past the caring about that side of things tbh :-( my loyalty has been destroyed

I am very, very worried about getting an offer (if interview is successful!) and losing it because of this

WicksEnd Mon 27-Jul-15 19:42:15

Could you make up a medical appointment instead? That way you could go into work before/after the interview. Be vague and just say you have been referred for some tests at the hospital.

nocoolnamesleft Mon 27-Jul-15 19:45:22

Your decision. But they are likely to ask for a reference. At which point your employer may twig, and put something in your reference. In some jobs, that would make the potential employer withdraw the offer. In others.... they might well not care. I wouldn't, because getting caught would be career suicide. But you know what line of work you're in and I don't!

Cheby Mon 27-Jul-15 19:52:06

Can you say you have an important personal appointment to attend instead?

To be honest I think it would be fine and although I haven't, I would pull a sickie in that situation.

Employers will only be interested in number of sick days, not actual dates and I have never asked a candidate how they were able to be there on the day, other than small talk about their journey to try and put them at ease.

Go for the interview. Good luck!

GlitzAndGigglesx Mon 27-Jul-15 19:55:40

When I went for the interview at my current job I was asked if I was on leave and said yes, but truth was I had phoned in my old job to say my childcare provider let me down that day. I didn't even feel bad about lying the place depressed me. I got the job so it all worked out for me. I'd call in sick if I were you or you'll only regret it

Winterjoy Mon 27-Jul-15 19:59:31

Yes, I think I had already decided to attend tbh

I think if it comes up during the interview I will be honest(!)(yes I realise the irony) and say that since annual leave was not an option I made a difficult decision and took sick leave, if you find this abhorrent, no problem, please disregard my application but thank you for the interview opportunity

Thank you for the good luck wishes

agnesnott Mon 27-Jul-15 20:03:40

Previous employers can no longer be asked for sick record you don't have to discuss it.
But if you were caught this could be construed as gross misconduct for breach of trust. It would be best to ask in a fait accompli manner mentioning perhaps that they are aware you are suffering from work related stress etc.

Gunpowder Mon 27-Jul-15 20:03:59

I think this is what 'emergency dental appointments' are for. Then you can have follow ups on later days, you can go to work for the morning/afternoon, it doesn't look as bad as lots of random sick days on your record.

Good luck! star

Gunpowder Mon 27-Jul-15 20:06:27

If you don't want to lie outright, you could just say it's for an appointment and then in the same sentence say your teeth are giving you gyp. wink

MameHootieBench Mon 27-Jul-15 20:06:29

Is the interview far enough in advance for you to be able to make a real medical appointment (something you need anyway, like a dental check up, or a doctor's appointment for something that's been bothering you). Then you can combine the two.

Winterjoy Mon 27-Jul-15 20:13:37

agnesnott they are not aware of the issues, I am very good at 'fronting it out' and mentally collapsing away from the workplace (hence panic attacks outside on the path to the building!!)

There is no point going that route, it is not a supportive environment I have watched others ask for help and be pushed out (the organisation has lost at least one tribunal for related issues)

Can't fake an appointment - they ask for proof (i.e. appointment letter) without fail

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