Submitted Assignment Minutes Late: Escape late submission penalty

Submitted Assignment Minutes Late

All deadlines usually arrive faster than expected. It is therefore understandable if you have submitted an assignment a few minutes late. If you have not completed the assignment, buying time is the only option you have to escape a late submission penalty.

To avoid late assignment submission penalties, use our Assignment Help service and earn the grades with timely delivered essays and papers. However, if you are late, the following are some of the methods you can use to buy time.

How to escape Late Submission Penalties for late assignments?

If you submitted your assignment minutes late, you can escape any late submission penalty by giving a valid excuse, explaining yourself, negotiating a new deadline, or asking your professor for a time extension prior to submission.

Let us explain each of these methods in detail below;

1. Asking your instructor for the extension.

You must meet face to face with your instructor and explain why you need the extension. Avoid lies when talking face to face because most instructors can tell when you are saying the truth. Follow the following process to ask for the extension.

Immediately you realize that you will not complete your assignment per the set deadline, that is when you should ask for the deadline extension. Sometimes you can strain to complete the work but it will most probably be poor and will hence cost you god grades.

How to ask for an extension on a paper?

Decide to ask for an extension as early as possible. When you ask for an extension on the deadline day, instructors are likely to conclude that you avoided doing the assignment or you even forgot about it.

1. First, identify an appropriate time
Late Assignment deadline extension

You can’t meet your instructor anytime you feel like. For college students, office hours of the instructor are the right time.

For high school students, you can meet your instructor after class or set up an appropriate meeting time with them.

2. Explain the situation

Be specific with your reasons for needing an extension. Explain your situation in detail for it to be legitimate and more persuasive.

3. Request for an extension

Ask for the extension, after you are done with explaining yourself. Do not ask for too long. You might make the instructor change his mind.

How to Write your Time Extension Request – Template email

The most preferable way to ask for an extension is meeting your instructor face to face. It is also ok and more mature when you ask for an extension in writing before the assignment due date.

The written request also is the best option if your instructor is not easily reachable. You can send him a message through Canvas. If you use that, check out our post on Canvas late submission trick and see if it is applicable.

In cases where you prefer meeting the instructor face to face, be cautious of your language. Be confident, humble and truthful. It is the only way that you can easily convince your instructor.

A short email example on how to request an extension

Dear, Sir/Madam,
I am writing to you to inform you that due to unavoidable circumstances, I will not be able to meet the set deadline for the assignment you gave. I am the breadwinner in our family. The company I work for sent us for a mandatory one-month Business Administration course.

This is an important task that if I choose to forego would have cost me my job. I kindly ask for a week after the completion of this course to complete your work. Thank you very much for your consideration.
Yours sincerely,
Student Name.

2. Admit and Explain your lateness with no excuses

The way you explain your reasons to the instructor determines whether or not you will receive an extension.

Late assignment extension request

It might be true that you are experiencing a lot of challenges and the instructor may sympathize with you but that is not your aim.

Sometimes, the instructor is only interested in a brief explanation of why the deadline was not met.

He doesn’t want to read a whole paragraph of you explaining your misfortunes.

Do not forget to highlight what you are doing differently to make sure that you will not be late again.

Always use a polite language when writing or addressing the instructor to increase your chances of getting the extension.

3. Negotiate a new late assignment deadline

Considering all the excuses you have provided, set a new date that you think that you will be able to complete the assignment within.

You should assure the instructor that you have a plan that will enable you to finish the assignment on time.

However, you should always note that the final decision lies with the instructor. The instructor can opt to reduce the time you have asked for if they think it is too much.

Finally, you should motivate yourself to do some extra work to make up for your lateness.

4. Find a Late Submission excuse

Some excuses can convince instructors to offer you additional time to do your assignment. You can blame the technology.

Late assignment submission penalty

In addition, you can argue that you experienced problems with using computers or printers that delayed you from finishing the work.

In extreme cases, you can also argue that you lacked the resources, or the necessary materials.

If the materials to be used were not available in your institution, you can blame the late delivery of material for your delay.

You can also argue that you provide for yourself and don’t rely on anyone.

The instructor can have mercy on you and add you extra time to complete your assignment.

Fake emergencies if explained well can also buy you time to complete your assignment. Read on for a list of 20 late submission excuses to buy you time and avoid the late submission penalty for your assignments.

Late Submission Penalties in selected Universities

UniversityLateness penaltyHow many days can you be late
Stanford UniversityStudents receive a 10 % late penalty on the actual absolute standard University mark upon expiry of the deadline.Students are granted three grace days after the set deadline.
Harvard UniversityAssignments A penalty amounting to a third of a grade for the first three lateness hours and an additional one-third of the grade imposed for every 24 hours after the first 3 hours penalty.

Theses The student is deducted one point for every 24 hours upon the expiry of the set deadline.
Students have one late day for theses and zero days for assignments.
Princeton UniversityStudents receive a 5% penalty on the grade for work submitted up to 2 hours late, 20% penalty on the grade for work submitted up to 24 hours late, 50% penalty for grade for work submitted up to 48 hours late, and 100% penalty for work submitted beyond the first 48 hours after the set deadline.  Students are allowed three Late days upon the expiry of the set deadline.
New York UniversityStudents receive a penalty amounting to 10 points for submission lateness within 5 weekdays. 100%penalty for lateness exceeding 5 weekdays at the lecturers’ discretion.Students receive zero late days.
Georgetown UniversityStudents receive a daily 5% penalty on the actual absolute standard University mark upon expiry of the deadline excluding non-academic days.Students receive zero late days.
Carnegie Mellon UniversityStudents get a 20% penalty on the possible 100% mark for assignments submitted within the first 24 hours upon expiry of the set deadline. Assignments received after the lapse of the 24 hours late are not accepted.Students have a maximum of two flex or late days upon the expiry of the set deadline.
University of Notre DameStudents receive a daily 10% penalty on the actual absolute standard University mark upon expiry of the deadline excluding non-academic days for a maximum of five days after which no assignment will be received.  Students receive zero late days.

Common Excuses if you Submitted Assignment Minutes Late

1. You have a full-time job.

Full-time jobs are big commitments and instructors can consider your extension easily.

Excuses if you Submitted Assignment Minutes Late
2. Other papers are due on the same date

Instructors can extend the deadline by a few hours if you argue that you have other papers to submit on the same date.

3. Severe weather

You can be granted an extension if the weather hindered you from delivering your assignment.

4. You are preparing for a standardized test

Most instructors are likely to grant you extension under these circumstances. They know that these tests require a lot of physical and mental preparation.

5. Illness

This should be a lengthy illness. The doctor’s note must be attached for evidence.

6. Family illness

If a member of your family is ill and you are the only available caregiver, an extension can be granted to you.

7. Travel

Students who have been proved that they can’t get to school on time to hand in their assignments can be granted extensions.

8. Mental Health

Stress is common among students. It may result in anxiety or panic attacks. Just like illness, you will need the doctor’s note for approval of the extension.

9. Finance

Some students are not able to afford money to print assignments. Not affording basic needs can lead to stress too.

10. Miscommunication

For an extension to be granted students must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that they were not informed.

11. Unavailable resources

You can argue that there was no right materials to handle the assignment. You can argue for late deliveries if it is true.

12. Moving house

If there were evictions from your area of residence, you can flash that cad. This way, you can have a guarantee an extension from instructors if it was unexpected.

13. Job interviews

If you are in for an interview on the day you are submitting assignments, you are granted extension more so if the job is course related.

14. Academic difficulty

If the instructor is aware that you struggle with assignments, he or she can grant you an extension.

15. Pregnancy and childbirth

Most institutions have formal procedures that allow longer extensions to all those in these circumstances.

16. IT problems

If your computer or printer didn’t work, sympathetic instructors can add you a few hours after the deadline to complete the work.

17. Divorce and separation

If you are a victim of divorce and separation you may be granted an extension until you come into terms with the situation.

18. Political violence

If you risk your life going to school to deliver papers due to political violence, you can be granted an extension.

19. Industrial strikes

Industrial strikes may sometimes be very serious and can block roads or risk people’s lives. This can be a good reason to get an extension from your instructor.

20. Unavoidable family Events

These are a range of different types of unavoidable family events that relate to your student life. You can be granted an extension in the case of unavoidable events such as weddings and funerals.


While you can try these hacks and tips, you need to use them wisely, by first knowing your professor. Every student should note that extensions lie at the discretion of the instructor or institution.

Always strive to complete and hand in your assignment within the set deadline. Do not forget to keep your assignments within the allowed plagiarism rates for essays and papers by your university.

In case of unavoidable circumstances that may lead to delays, make sure you follow the right protocol to ask for extensions. Extensions should only be approved by your instructor.

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