🐈
» Forums » Freelancers » Can a client end contract after receiving sou...
Page options
dhania_m
Community Member

Can a client end contract after receiving source file of first milestone

Hello,

 

I have a contract with various milestones and my client does not want to approve the first milestone if I don't send the source file. That was not written in the contract and I already showed my work in another way. I was planning to send all the files at the end of all the milestones. The milestones are similar so I am affraid the client end the contract and copy my work thanks to my source file.

What should I do?

Thank you,

14 REPLIES 14
kat303
Community Member

If you were planning on giving the source files at the very end of the job, but instead, give the client the source files now, there's a very very good chance that the client will close/cancel the project and perhaps, once they have those source files, hire another freelancer for a cheaper amount. 

 

If the contact includes the stipulation that all files (source files included) will be delivered at the end of the contract then you don't and are not obligated to provide them half way through (or before the entire job is finished.)

 

In fact, legally you don't have to provide a client the source files at all. Those files are a separate entity of the entire job.  You can provide wording in future contracts that 

All source files will be included at the end of the job

All source files will cost an extra $XXX if the client requests or wants them.

All source files will not be included with the final delivery. 

 

You can try reassuring this client through the message room, that you do intend to provide the source files at the end of the job (so you have documentation should a dispute arise.) 

 

So, if you provide the source files now, expect the client will close the contract. and you will not get paid. Or, if you don't provide those files, the client will close the contact and give you a negative review/feedback.  I wish I could tell you what to do, but I think you'll lose out both ways in this situation. 

 

 

dhania_m
Community Member

Hello Kathy,

 

Thank you for your opinion. This is my fear yes. I read other topics and saw that if all the milestones are funded, I could at least open a dispute. How can i check the amount put on Escrow for this contract?

petra_r
Community Member


Dhania M wrote:

Hello Kathy,

 

Thank you for your opinion. This is my fear yes. I read other topics and saw that if all the milestones are funded, I could at least open a dispute. How can i check the amount put on Escrow for this contract?


Go to your Contracts page

Click on the contract

It should say "funded" against the funded milestones and show how much is in Escrow at the top.

 

 

prestonhunter
Community Member

re: "What should I do?"

 

I am not going to tell you what you should do.

 

I WILL tell you what I personally do.

 

As soon as I get hired to work on a fixed-price contract, I set up a server account where I do all my work, including writing the source files.

 

Then I send the client the username and password - the same credentials that I use - so that the client has complete, real-time access to ALL of the work I'm doing.

 

I do ALL of my work on that account. So there is never any work that I do that the client does not have complete access to.

 

As I finish tasks, I submit them using the "Submit Work / Request Payment" button. But in actuallity, I'm not sending the client anything she doesn't already have.

 

I don't hold anything back from the clients. This helps them to trust me. And I trust them.

Dhania, here’s something else you can do in the future. Instead of multiple milestones, ask the client to create one milestone for the entire job. Or, if the client is unwilling, then insist the first milestone is a high percentage of the total budget. Then if the client cancels the job, you can at least dispute the full amount or close to it.
__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce

Clients can cancel/close a contract at any time.

And there is nothing wrong with that. That is a good thing.

 

If a client has a fixed-price contract open, all she needs to do to close it is to release any funded escrow money to the freelancer, and then close the contract. This doesn't break any Upwork rules. And there is nothing the freelancer can do to stop it.

 

For me, the only thing that makes sense with fixed-price contracts is to have contracts or milestone set up for the CURRENT TASK.

 

If there is a task I'm working on for a client, then the payment for that task is funded in escrow. That's it. Very simple.

 

The amount of money currently funded in escrow has nothing to do with future plans.


So if there is a 10-step, $1000 project, then maybe I have ONE STEP funded in escrow: $100.

I do that step, and the client pays for it.

 

If the client wants to close the contract immediately after step 1, that's fine.

I have not done the work for steps 2 through 9. The client has not paid me for those steps. So everything works out and is fair.

Hi Preston!

 

I follow your structure when creating contracts with clients; each task has its own milestone. My current client created and funded a contract with only one milestone, as the job was simply to type words in a given font and provide the .Ai file. I completed the task, submitted the source file and requested payment for the milestone.

 

The next morning, my client canceled the contract and requested an escrow refund, stating issues with her printer––not my work (although she did mention wanting to adjust kerning, but that's beside the point). 

 

Here is my question: would you approve the request? The work was completed, source files provided and it was clearly no fault of my own. If I deny the request and instead dispute the action, will I be paid or is it likely a wash and I should grin and bear it for feedback sake?

 

I value your opinion and appreciate your time. I have 6 days remaining to respond to the request.

 

Best,

Amanda Steder

 

**Edited for community guidelines**

re: "Here is my question: would you approve the request?"

 

No.

I would NOT approve that request.

 

The client hired you to do a task.

You did the task.

The client should pay you what she agreed to pay.

 

This is NOT complicated.

 

For feedback's sake?

No, that isn't logical. Because if you REFUND the money, then you will have a ZERO-pay contract, which is WORSE for your JSS.

 

What I might do in this case, if I just want this to be over with, is tell the client:

 

"Janet:

I'm sorry to hear that you had trouble with the file. I would like to help you out. With the way Upwork works, and my own long-standing policies, I would not be able to give you a full refund for this. Because I did everything that I was hired to do, and I already provided the files to you. But I could provide a 20% discount immediately, if that would be helpful. If you will navigate to the contract and release 80% of the escrow money, I will allow a refund to be returned to you immediately. You would receive that within 5 business days."

 

But then, after that... because this client did not deal with me honestly (by asking for a refund), I would NOT work with her again.

 

That is why I rarely ever need to issue refunds of any kind to clients: Because they probably know that if they try to get out of paying me what they owe me, that I won't work with them any more.


Amanda S wrote:

The next morning, my client canceled the contract and requested an escrow refund, stating issues with her printer––not my work (although she did mention wanting to adjust kerning, but that's beside the point). 

 

The problem with the client's printer has nothing to do with the completion of your work. It's the CLIENTS problem not yours. You put in the time and effort and sent this client the completed files. Now they have to pay you for that, and then fix THEIR problem.

 

Lately, within the last few months, more and more clients are using this tactic to get free work. They either say they don't like the work, they can't use it, or they outright cancel the contract asking for a refund. 

 

Freelancers need to start standing up for themselves and their businesses and stop being so quick to issue those refund requests.  . 

 

Here is my question: would you approve the request? The work was completed, source files provided and it was clearly no fault of my own. If I deny the request and instead dispute the action, will I be paid or is it likely a wash and I should grin and bear it for feedback sake?

 

I'm not Preston, but to answer that questions. No I would not approve the request. I would dispute that request. And I would take it all the way up to arbitration if needed (whether the amount was $10 or $10,000)  

Would you be paid if you dispute that request? I can't 100% say yes, but there's a very very very good chance that you will since you did provide the work to the client according to the scope of the job. I doubt that the client will be awarded any refund when they say, they want a refund because their printer doesn't work. 

Arbitration costs the client $291 and you $291 And if the client doesn't pay that fee, you will get that fee back plus you'll automatically get all the funds in escrow. FYI If the client does pay the fee, no matter who is decided as the "winner" neither will get that fee back. But usually when the client hears the amount, they don't pay it. 

 

I value your opinion and appreciate your time. I have 6 days remaining to respond to the request.

 

Best,

Amanda Steder

 

**Edited for community guidelines**


 

hi

How to make a user name and password theme
Unfortunately, I was scammed in two projects, I was sending files in the chat
After making the contract because I do not know that they will cancel the contract and steal the work and I returned the money to them too
And you say it hurts jss
I want to know how can I withdraw 20% of the money 

Thanks 

petra_r
Community Member


Kero S wrote:

After making the contract because I do not know that they will cancel the contract and steal the work and I returned the money to them too. And you say it hurts jss


It doesn't. Only bad feedback (mainly private feedback) hurts the JSS.

 


Kero S wrote:

How to make a user name and password theme


What do you mean?

 


Kero S wrote:

I want to know how can I withdraw 20% of the money  


20% of what money?

86ac29f2
Community Member

1- I see one say this [image: image.png]
86ac29f2
Community Member

this photo

petra_r
Community Member


Kero S wrote:

this photo


Don't get confused. Those are simply opinions which may or may not be relevant to your own situation. The vast majority of freelancers would never have any need whatsoever for such a thing.

 

Maybe you should explain what your issue is, then others can make suggestions based on that, rather than random posts from years ago?

Latest Articles
Featured Topics
Learning Paths