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Is there a word to describe a person who always tries to find excuses to not do something even if they end up doing it. The reason behind this could be laziness or no interest.

Also is there a word for a person who always throws excuses regardless of situations.

  • The closest word I know of is "malingerer". It really means a person who often fakes illness or inability. – Jeff F. Jan 10 at 16:15
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    Most of its synonyms focus more on "laziness", but I think shirker has stronger allusions of someone who always finds ways to get out of doing things (including simply not being around, as well as having plenty of excuses). – FumbleFingers Jan 10 at 18:05
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Two words suggest themselves. One is skiver:-

n. Chiefly British Slang A person who avoids work or duty.

[American Heritage Dictionary via the Free Dictionary]

The other is (as FumbleFingers noted) shirker:-

v. shirked, shirk·ing, shirks

v.tr. To avoid or neglect (a duty or responsibility).

v.intr. To avoid work or duty.

[American Heritage Dictionary via the Free Dictionary]

The latter has the advantage that the person doing it may frequently be found in the shirker's hole, (which I am astounded to find no references for on teh interwebz).

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    "Skiver" also had a US slang meaning (slightly different to the British one) related to unauthorised absence from college campus. OED says it is now "disused". But the US meaning dates from the 1880s, and the British only from 1941. It may be one of those cases where a word was introduced to Britain by US army personnel during WW2, but took on a slightly different meaning. There is also a trade of "skiver" which relates to paring leather. I grew up in a shoe-manufacturing city and remember the sits-vac column of the local paper being full of adverts for "skivers". Always seemed a bit odd! – WS2 Jan 10 at 22:37

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