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If I dont dispute within the time frame how do I not get charged if my claim is legitimate?

Active Member
Nnamdi I Member Since: Jul 11, 2017
1 of 12

Pretty much I have psted 3 jobs so far on Upwork. One small job ended up getting refunded to me because the freelancer got banned (probably a scammer). One job that I have going is legitimate, but its being held up due to my recent suspension from my latest 3rd Job. I've been suspended becuase I havent paid $1,000 to someone who spent 25hrs programing something for himself and at times literally doing nothing. I blocked Upwork on my card and sent him a message that he needs to show me proof he's worked on MY project and days later he sent me screenshot of literally 1 line of code (proof uploaded). Now Im new so I didnt know that there is only a small window for disputes, so I'm stuck in a tight spot. The guidelines are making it out to sound that I need to pay.


Maybe Im in the wrong but its becuase after using upwork for about a month It really is the wild wild west. Just last week someone wished me and my race death becuase I reversed imaged his account image and found out he was a fake and actually a scam artist. I called him up and In his rage he admitted to making over $100,000 scamming on upwork. The worst part is that his account is still up.


Back to this guy I hired. He has no work history, never asked a single question in those 25hrs and is constantly messaging me about the money. There are certain resources I would have had to supply and he never asked for that either. I am 100% sure he's not legitimate. My request for more screenshots besides the 1 line of code was meet with me having to pay him first which makes no sense. Im not asking for pics of work I'm asking for pics of what he did in those 25hrs. In addition he said he'd do the entire project for under $1k yet he blew the budget out his very first week. Another lie...


What are my options becuase the only one I see right now is just closing my account. I dont care but I dont want to do that to my legitimate hire.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
2 of 12

If you are going to pursue these efforts here on Upwork, you need to either hire a project manager or step up and be a project manager yourself.


You have let the programmers be the project managers. The problem with that is only about 25% of programmers can successfully serve as their own project managers. None of the people who you have hired fall into that 25%.

Active Member
Nnamdi I Member Since: Jul 11, 2017
3 of 12

Well how do I become a project manager. I really shouldnt have to hand hold my hires.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 12

re: "I really shouldnt have to hand hold my hires."


In an ideal world, you would not need need a project manager to manage your hires.


In the real world, 75% of programmers need to work with a project manager in order for the project to be successful.


Even the best project managers work better when a project manager is working with them.


Personally, I am one of the 25% of programmers who can serve as his own project manager. But on about half of the large projects I work on, there is a project manager working on the project who I report to - a person different from the project owner. These projects go better. The project moves along faster.

Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
5 of 12

I'm sorry that your first contract on the platform didn't work out, Nnamdi. 

I'm checking with the team what else we can do at this point since the time to dispute your freelancer's hours has already passed. 

In the meantime, I would like to suggest that you report your 2nd freelancer's messages to the team so that they can take actions against the freelancer's account. 

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
6 of 12

re: "Well how do I become a project manager."


It is beyond the scope of this thread for me to describe all the things a project manager does.


But the simplest answer is:


A project manager manages the development project.


Key things that a project manager does is check in on the progress regularly.


A project manager would never let a new developer - one whom he is unfamiliar with - work for 25 hours without checking the progress of a project.


With a new developer on the project, a project manager would check what has been done after the first hour, after 2 or 3 hours, etc. The project manager would not just read or listen to a report about progress.The project manager would actually read the source code files and test them and view the results.


A project manager helps to determine which developers to keep on a project, and which to fire.


A project manager for a large project (such as yours) would not hire one developer, but would probably hire three to five top candidates. He would assign them identical or similar first tasks, evaluate their work carefully after an hour or two, and then continue working only with the best people.


A project manager ensures that money is not lost to scammers or low-performing freelancers. A project manager ensures that the project's budget is well spent.

Active Member
Nnamdi I Member Since: Jul 11, 2017
7 of 12

Thank you for that. I was under the impression that upwork screened for compentency, but I guess not. It would be greater for clients if they did a harder screening for developers. It looks like unfortunately I do have to hawk eye and handhold which I have no time to do (hence why im on upwork in general). I guess I have to get a project manager, not from upwork, to do all of this for me. Thank you for the advice.

Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
8 of 12

Nnamdi, Upwork isn't the wild west at all. Upwork has a number of rules and procedures in place to assist you in keeping your project on track and ensuring that you get your money's worth. It seems as if you did not take the time to educate yourself about how Upwork works before getting started, and that's resulting in an expensive lesson. 


You could have capped the number of hours your freelancer could bill in a week, which would have ensured that you stayed within budget.


You could have used the nearly-week-long review period to make sure the freelancer was actually working on your project and that you were seeing progress before your credit card was billed. 


You could have paused the project at any time when you noticed that your freelancer was continuing to bill but hadn't obtained the necessary resources to do the job.


I realize none of that helps you now, with this project, but should you decide to fulfill your obligations and continue on Upwork, educating yourself about the many protections and controls Upwork offers you as a client will prevent this sort of thing from happening again.

Active Member
Nnamdi I Member Since: Jul 11, 2017
9 of 12

I did pause the contract but was still billed....


As I said before it is the wild wild west because the client is the one who has to screen all the freelancers but Upwork is the one with access to all their private info. Freelancers should have to all be ID verified and unable to change pictures without re-verification. The guy I called out as a scammer has a profile that is still up and is on its 3rd picture. I reported it several days ago to a live person with screenshots and hes still up and running. Not a good sign and makes it harder on the legit new freelancers with no history. I personally wll no longer hire them.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
10 of 12

re: "I was under the impression that upwork screened for compentency, but I guess not."


There is no such screening.


What Upwork DOES offer is a platform on which freelancers receive feedback and ratings in various categories at the end of contracts.


The cumulative set of these feedback responses forms a freelancer's work history.


Clients may consider a freelancer's work history as one part of the overall picture Upwork provides on a freelancer's profile history.


This can be immensely helpful.


But a freelancer's work history alone does not guarantee a successful project.


There is not actually any substitute for hiring a freelancer and evaluating her work early on and deciding whether or not the freelancer's work and communications style is a good fit for your project. There is no way to predict with certainty how a freelancer will work out before hiring her.


That's the great thing about hiring freelancers. There is no obligation to continue working with them if they're not righ for a job. Twenty minutes into a freelancer's contract, if you don't like what you see, you can just end the contract. Nobody can stop you.


Clients have all the power here on Upwork. They simply need to know how to use that power to benefit themselves and their project.