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Partially finished project on a fixed, funded project - how to close?

Active Member
Mikael B Member Since: Dec 31, 2017
1 of 5

Hello everybody, 

I have posted a small fixed-price project, picked a freelancer for it and we've set a milestone and I funded it (UpWork gave no choice but to fund it while creating it). 


The work was about finishing old html. The freelancer said that after reviewing the original files he thought it was too complex and he wants to quit. I'm not a coder so I took his word, so its fine to me. He made a few changes to code (didn't send files yet) and we've so far agreed that I could pay a smaller amount for the done fixes. 


Now, since there is already money posted to escrow for the only milestone and it has not been released - how do I handle this? I couldn't find a way to edit the milestone to be smaller and when I tried to cancel contract I UpWork gave a message that the funded money would be paid - which is not what we agreed with the freelancer. 

What can I do? 
- Can I or the freelancer edit the milestones? 

- Can I edit the contract? The freelancer tried this but he got an error message that he cannot propose a new contract until a payment - but the current milestone is too big so I can't release it. 
- Can we cancel the contract so that I pay him a part of the original milestone? 
- What are my options? No files have been changed yet, the money is in escrow. 


Both me and the freelancer agree on the new terms and the payment on discussions but seems like neither of us can't apply the changes in UpWork.  

Joanne Marie P Moderator Member Since: Nov 26, 2017
2 of 5

Hi Mikael,


You can adjust the amount of money that you release from a milestone. Please check out this help article for more information. Feel free to reach back if you need further assistance.Thank you!


~ Joanne
Active Member
Mikael B Member Since: Dec 31, 2017
3 of 5

Thanks Joanne!

That raised a few more questions though..

1. At the contract page there is a green "Pay now" button. When I click it, it takes me to a "Payment" page. In there I see only a button that says "Pay". I didn't want to click it yet as I figured it might release the entire amount, which reads just above the Pay button (money in escrow). Since the payment I want to make is less than the only milestone there is, can I adjust the releasable fund after I click the "Pay" button? 

In the article you posted, at headline "Releasing less than the milestone amount" it shows money amounts and edit buttons that I do not see in my view (at least now when I see the "money in escrow" and the "Pay" button at Payment page). I suppose the appear only after I click Pay? 


3. In the first paragraph of above headline, it says "If you choose to pay less than the specified milestone or total amount, the excess funds will be held over for the next milestone." But what about in this case when I'm supposed to pay only for a partial work that is done - there won't be any more milestones. Do I have to request a refund afterwards?


4. Or - I also read an article about canceling the project. Is all above unnessecary if I just cancel the contract? If I read and understood right I'm still given a chance to pay something If I want to and the freelancer can accept it, which would be ideal I think. Can you verify this? 


Ps. happy new year to anybody reading this Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Ryan C Member Since: Feb 3, 2017
4 of 5

Hello Mikael,


Happy new year! If you click the "Pay" Button, a small window will pop up where you can edit the amount of payment you will pay. You may also choose whether to close the contract after the payment or keep it open. Here's a link to help you with the Escrow refund and ending your contract. Thank you!

Community Guru
Jennifer D Member Since: Feb 15, 2016
5 of 5

When you hit "pay" you'll get the option to change the amount you're paying. You can then close the job. Because you will have money remaining in escrow, closing the job will automatically request a refund from the freelancer, who should approve it if they have already agreed to this.


Alternatively, you could pay the freelancer a "bonus" for the amount you agreed, then close the contract and request the entire amount in escrow be refunded. But make sure you communicate with your freelancer whatever you decide, so they understand what is going on.