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How to Play Hooky From Your Firm

By Jason Beahm on March 21, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

You get paid a lot of money to work at BigLaw. But what if you wanted to get paid a lot of money to not work at BigLaw? 

Well, that could be potentially unethical, so we could never advise you to do it. But people are going to play hooky anyway, so we've compiled a list of ways other attorneys have managed to do so. FindLaw, and especially its corporate parent, does not condone any of the following tricks, by the way:


If you're going to fake a sick day, pick a day in the middle of the week. Friday or Monday sick days are far more suspicious.

Disappear Early:

Instead of calling in sick, you can leave early. Just after lunch is a good time. Walk around for a little bit, then just go home. For bonus points, leave a coat or sweater on your chair, and take the stairs down a few flights before you catch the elevator.

Keep it Simple:

The more details, the more suspicious your excuse can sound. Sicknesses such as migraine headaches or stomach illness are good choices. "If your house burned down, that's going to be on the news, or if you say someone was murdered at the house next door to yours, that's going to be on the news ... You have to be somewhat intelligent about this," says Kerry Speckman, author of The Hooky Book: More than 200 Excuses for Rolling in Late, Skipping Out Early and Scamming a Whole Day Off.

Skip Social Media:

If you're well enough to spend the day on Facebook and Twitter, perhaps you were also well enough to go to work.

Watch Out For the Sun:

Coming back from a sick day with a tan is an amateur move. You're supposed to look pasty, not like The Situation. If you go outside, use plenty of sunscreen and wear a hat.

Act Normal When You Return:

When you return to BigLaw, don't act fidgety or abnormal. Don't bring up your sick day, just continue as if everything was normal.

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