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scam

Active Member
Pierre T Member Since: Feb 4, 2019
1 of 9

I noticed one freelancer has submitted work for 400 hours and charged my account more than 2000$, he was hired for a 10 hour work and continued charging my account without my permission, and without doing anything. I just noticed that, I am not sure if we can get the money back, but can you at least suspend his account so he doesn't do this with others please?

Community Guru
Michael S Member Since: Aug 29, 2017
2 of 9

If the contractor is billing without doing any work, just close the contract and file a dispute. If he isn't using the desktop app to track time, or the app shows no activity for the logged hours, it should be easy enough to dispute and not pay for work that wasn't done.

Community Guru
Vivek K Member Since: May 28, 2016
3 of 9
Michael S wrote:

If the contractor is billing without doing any work, just close the contract and file a dispute. If he isn't using the desktop app to track time, or the app shows no activity for the logged hours, it should be easy enough to dispute and not pay for work that wasn't done.

Time to initiate dispute is limited.
Considering 400 hours means several week, a substantial part of money(if not all) is likely lost.

Moderator
Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
4 of 9

HI Pierre, 


I'm sorry to learn about your experience about this freelancer. It looks like the contract has been closed since December of last year. In an hourly contract, clients have the chance to review the hours logged before the payment is processed and paid to the freelancers. You may read more about it here.

 

I'll see if there's something else that can be done here, but it looks like the contract has passed the timeframe to file a dispute. 


-Avery
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Active Member
Pierre T Member Since: Feb 4, 2019
5 of 9

Hi Avery,

 

Thanks for your prompt response. It Doesnt matter if I cant get my money back, at least I want him to be suspended, otherwise he'll do the same thing to other clients.

 

Regards,

 

Yashar

Moderator
Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
6 of 9

Hi Pierre, 


Please know that Upwork does not suspend accounts unless there is clear proof or evidence that a violation of the Upwork Terms of Service has been committed by the other party. In this case, if you have further evidence that the user has violated the Upwork ToS, you can share it with me through a private message and I'll send it to the team for their review. 

Please also know that I have shared this with the team so that it can be reviewed, and a recommendation can be made. I'll come back here once I have more information.


-Avery
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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
7 of 9

Michael is right. It should be easy to get some of your money back. If the freelancer used manual time, just dispute the hours. Upwork will automatically remove disputed manual time. If work diaries don't contain adequate memos or if screen shots show he wasn't actually working on our project, then Upwork will likewise remove those hours.

 

For future reference, and for other clients reading this, if you have a project expected to take ten hours, you can simply limit the time to 10 hours. Then review the work after that before deciding to allow more hours.

 

It is completely unnecessary to have an outcome like this, with a freelancer working hundreds of hours and not doing anything worthwhile for the client.

 

There isn't really such a thing as "the freelancer working for 400 hours without my permission", because the client controls how many hours per week a freelancer can work, and a freelancer can review work at any time, and pause or close a contract at any time.

 

This freelancer was a total disaster, and I am sorry for the bad experience that the client had. But the client does not need to give up hope on getting some of the money refunded. And the client should know that such situations are easily prevented.

 

But as Vivek points out: The time for disputed hourly work is limited. A client needs to dispute hourly time within the first week after that time has been logged.

 

Which means: If the freelancer fraudulently logged hours during the past week, then definitely dispute those hours if there is a basis for doing so (manual time/memos/screenshots).

 

If the fraudulently-logged hours were from past weeks, then don't try to get a refund for those hours (which is already the original poster's plan - to not try to do so). But DO plan to monitor freelancers' work better in the future. Or make sure you have a project manager who is doing so.

Community Leader
Garrett M Member Since: Feb 13, 2015
8 of 9

First of all, it is not right for you to be scammed, but you need to understand why this happens. Upwork is a race to the bottom type of platform. Clients want to pay less and less for jobs, so most of the good freelancers who want to be paid fairly for their time have either left the platform or will eventually leave the platform. this leaves only the truly dedicated top-tier freelancers (40+ an hour), and the scammers. A dedicated freelancer will tell you straight up, its going to take me 40-80 hours at 50/hr to do your job, and this is just an estimate. A scammer will say, i can do your job in 12 hours for 50/hr, guaranteed. Who gets hired? 9 times out of 10 the scammer gets hired, and then this situation the OP is in inevitably happens. Additionally, some freelancers on this site are just shady middlemen, taking your job for 50/hr, pocketing 50% and then hiring cheap, low quality 3rd world freelancers at hourly rates like 3-8/hr or fixed price contracts. Thus, the quality of work delivered varies greatly. My suggestion would be to find good freelancers and stick with them as long as you can. When taking on a new freelancer, try asking for referrals and references from previous clients. A good freelancer who is established on the platform should have no problem providng references and referrals, and during my time on the platform i asked clients frequently if i could use them as references, and many of them agreed.


I left upwork in August of 2017 and haven't looked back. I still browse jobs ocassionally, but the results are still the same low quality/low pay contracts that were here when i left the platform. I found my current position through a referral from a freelancer i met on another freelancing site, the now defunct Ziptask. My current contract even includes paid holidays, quarterly bonuses, and 1 week paid vacation. I only make $800 week, but all things considered its a much better deal than what i was making on upwork, essentially being mugged each week for 20% of my earnings, then having to wait 12 days to have my funds released. Why would i come back to upwork, when there is so much better out there? 

I'm appreciative of my time here, but upwork no longer creates value for me as an average freelancer, so i've had to move on. In the beginning, when it was still called Odesk, this site was great. It was filled with honest clients filling positions at all skill levels, allowing a freelancer to grow over time by taking bigger and more challenging jobs. Those days are long gone, and I'm not sure if they'll ever come back. I keep logging in every couple months to see if this situation has changed, but sadly it hasn't... yet. Here's to hoping the next time i log in there will be jobs worth taking.

Moderator
Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
9 of 9

Hi Pierre, 

I checked this further with the team and they have advised that you are still within the timeframe to file a dispute for the hours logged for this contract. A member of the team will reach out to you to assist you further. 


-Avery
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