One in five cite difficulties with childcare as a reason to call in sick. Photo: AP

London - Childcare problems are the most common reason for British workers to “pull a sickie”, a survey claims.

Almost two-thirds of us have taken a day off work after falsely claiming to be ill in the last three years, the research suggests.

One in five cite difficulties with childcare as the reason, while one in six have called in sick because of relationship problems.

Experts said it showed workers were made to feel uncomfortable if they were honest about family issues and called on bosses to do more to help workers struggling with personal problems.

Other reasons given for claiming to be ill include going to a job interview - one in ten said they had done this.

One in 12 have also pretended to be ill to avoid a difficult situation at work. Workers are less likely to pull a sickie for a hangover, with just one in 14 saying they had done so in the last three years. And only one in 30 have pretended to be ill because they were unhappy at work.

The survey of 1 000 British workers was carried out by Timeware, an IT software provider for businesses.

It also examined the top reasons for being late for work. The most common was transport issues, followed by oversleeping and a lack of motivation.

Daily Mail