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A little confused about invoices

Community Guru
Richard W Member Since: Jun 22, 2017
1 of 7

Hi. I have a client whose financial director has just asked me for invoices for my work. (I've been working on this hourly job for about a month.) I'm planning to refer him to this Upwork help page: https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211068188-Invoices-and-Transaction-History

 

As it happens, I recently became an Upwork client myself for the first time, so I took a look at my own invoices as a client, to check out the client experience, in case my client has any questions.

 

I can see 3 items in my transaction history, with types Processing fee, Payment and Hourly.

 

 - Clicking on the Ref ID link for the Hourly item gets me an invoice for the hours worked.

 - Clicking on either of the other two Ref ID links gets me a receipt for my payment (for hours plus transaction fee).

 - Clicking on the "Download Invoices (ZIP)" button gets me these same two documents.

 

My main question is: why don't I get an invoice for the processing fee?

 

The help page says this:

The standard 3% payment processing and administration fee will have a receipt instead of an invoice because it is a per payment fee and not necessarily associated with a particular invoice. A single payment might be for multiple weekly invoices, or for less than the invoiced amount due to a credit on your account.

 

I don't understand this. I can see why the processing fee would have a separate invoice from the hours, but not why it would have no invoice at all. Moreover, there isn't a separate receipt for the processing fee; the receipt combines both payment to the freelancer and Upwork's processing fee.

 

I was also a little surprised that the invoice for the Hours is shown as being an invoice from the freelancer, rather than an invoice from Upwork. After all, it's Upwork who I'm paying (and getting a receipt from).

Community Guru
Martina P Member Since: Jul 11, 2018
2 of 7

Richard W wrote:

Hi. I have a client whose financial director has just asked me for invoices for my work. (I've been working on this hourly job for about a month.) I'm planning to refer him to this Upwork help page: https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211068188-Invoices-and-Transaction-History

 

As it happens, I recently became an Upwork client myself for the first time, so I took a look at my own invoices as a client, to check out the client experience, in case my client has any questions.

 

I can see 3 items in my transaction history, with types Processing fee, Payment and Hourly.

 

 - Clicking on the Ref ID link for the Hourly item gets me an invoice for the hours worked.

 - Clicking on either of the other two Ref ID links gets me a receipt for my payment (for hours plus transaction fee).

 - Clicking on the "Download Invoices (ZIP)" button gets me these same two documents.

 

My main question is: why don't I get an invoice for the processing fee?

 

The help page says this:

The standard 3% payment processing and administration fee will have a receipt instead of an invoice because it is a per payment fee and not necessarily associated with a particular invoice. A single payment might be for multiple weekly invoices, or for less than the invoiced amount due to a credit on your account.

 

I don't understand this. I can see why the processing fee would have a separate invoice from the hours, but not why it would have no invoice at all. Moreover, there isn't a separate receipt for the processing fee; the receipt combines both payment to the freelancer and Upwork's processing fee.

 

I was also a little surprised that the invoice for the Hours is shown as being an invoice from the freelancer, rather than an invoice from Upwork. After all, it's Upwork who I'm paying (and getting a receipt from).


It should not surprise you that the invoice is not from upwork. Upwork is the middleman that earns a commission, but not the person that has delivered the work that is invoiced. Legally the invoice must come from the freelancer. No middleman will ever assume this responsibilty and would be crazy to do so, risking all kinds of frivolous or not so frivolous lawsuits that would surely follow. 

Community Guru
Richard W Member Since: Jun 22, 2017
3 of 7

Martina P wrote:


It should not surprise you that the invoice is not from upwork. Upwork is the middleman that earns a commission, but not the person that has delivered the work that is invoiced. Legally the invoice must come from the freelancer. No middleman will ever assume this responsibilty and would be crazy to do so, risking all kinds of frivolous or not so frivolous lawsuits that would surely follow. 


Thanks for the explanation, Martina. I'm relatively new to freelancing, and still rather ignorant about some business matters.

Moderator
Vladimir G Moderator Member Since: Oct 31, 2014
4 of 7

Hi Richard,

 

Thank you for sharing your client's question here. Please refer to the information Valeria and I shared previously in response to the same question on this thread and note that I'll forward your feedback to our team for further consideration. 

Community Guru
Richard W Member Since: Jun 22, 2017
5 of 7

Vladimir G wrote:

Hi Richard,

 

Thank you for sharing your client's question here. Please refer to the information Valeria and I shared previously in response to the same question on this thread and note that I'll forward your feedback to our team for further consideration. 


Vladimir, that thread basically just repeats what is stated in the Upwork help page that I linked to. The answer seems to be no, Upwork does not provide invoices for the transaction processing fess that it charges, only receipts. If my client asks about that specific point, that's what I'll tell him.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
6 of 7

Richard W wrote:

Upwork does not provide invoices for the transaction processing fess that it charges, only receipts. If my client asks about that specific point, that's what I'll tell him.

Well, as far as accounting is concerned, you have nothing at all to do with the payment processing charge. You do not charge that, Upwork do. The client's supplier for the work is you. The client's supplier for the payment processing service is Upwork.

 

Community Guru
Richard W Member Since: Jun 22, 2017
7 of 7

Petra R wrote:

Richard W wrote:

Upwork does not provide invoices for the transaction processing fess that it charges, only receipts. If my client asks about that specific point, that's what I'll tell him.

Well, as far as accounting is concerned, you have nothing at all to do with the payment processing charge. You do not charge that, Upwork do. The client's supplier for the work is you. The client's supplier for the payment processing service is Upwork.

 


Yes, that's why I expected Upwork to provide the client with an invoice for the payment processing fee.

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