Employees may seek ways to work as little as possible, whilst creating the impression that they are productively occupied. This tendency may be confined to isolated individuals or may become part of the work ethic of an institution.
The Bible and Greek mythology both contain descriptions of attempts to feign illness.
Malingering is an avoidance reaction (avoidance of situations deemed unpleasant) or a condition feigned in order to bring about personal gain, but in either case may be viewed as having social, moral and legal implications. Malingering most often manifests itself in criminal cases involving pleas of mental illness, in litigation arising from personal injury, and in attempts to evade military service.