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Can a dispute be reopened or taken to arbitration after the Upwork closed the dispute?

kbhagtani82
Active Member
Kapildev B Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
1 of 19

I had a client couple of months back.  The milestones of fixed price contracts were released, after which client started asking more work with continuous addition.  The client filed a dispute and the mediation begun. The client was given the option to move to arbitration with a deadline. Eventually, the client did not respond to the notice for 12 days and the dispute was closed.  Suddenly, as soon the dispute close notification was sent, the client came up saying "he did not see the notification until now" and he wants to go to arbitration.  

 

The question being, since the dispute close has already been sent, can it re opened and sent to arbitration?

 

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 19

Kapildev B wrote:

The question being, since the dispute close has already been sent, can it re opened and sent to arbitration?


It had better not be... The client already had 12 days rather than the standard 5 days...

kbhagtani82
Active Member
Kapildev B Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
3 of 19

Totally. You can't miss three notifications and still come back asking to open it again and going a step further to arbitration when you have failed to respond for over a week with a reason or not. Hopefully not

vladag
Community Manager
Vladimir G Community Manager Member Since: Oct 31, 2014
4 of 19

Hi Kapildev,

 

Thanks for the message, I understand your concern. We won't be able to discuss your dispute case or its outcome in the Community forums. Note that our team member will follow up on your support ticket and provide an update. Thank you for understanding.

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kbhagtani82
Active Member
Kapildev B Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
5 of 19

The intent is not discussion. I am trying to understand the process 

wlyonsatl
Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
6 of 19

Kapildev B.,

 

We know how this is supposed to work. Please come back to this thread to let us know if the client's tardy demand for arbitration succeeded.

 

Thanks and good luck!

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
7 of 19

I think there are 3 separate concepts:

- How much time does Upwork officially state that a client has to do this?

- How much time does Upwork ACTUALLY allow a client to do this?

- How much time SHOULD a client have to do this?

 

If Upwork STATES that a client has a certain amount of days to do this, then I think MOST of us would agree that is the amount of time Upwork should allow.

 

But aside from all that, I will state my opinion very clearly:
Refund thinking hurts clients. A client should resolve everything while a contract is open. Once a client has closed a contract, that should be the end of it. When a client accepts a freelancer's work and releases funds and closes a contract and THEN asks for money back? I consider that "dirty pool" regardless of what Upwork officially (or unofficially) allows.

wlyonsatl
Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
8 of 19

I can see why a client would be allowed to request a refund after a contract is closed if the work product is complex enough that the client may not find an error or problem until after the contract is closed.

 

I speak from experience when I say that many clients - mostly the ones with tight budgets - close contracts as soon as possible, which I assume is because they can't afford me billing more time and my work to that date suffices.

 

But they may subsequently find that a particular element of one of the more complex financial models I have provided them is not working correctly. I don't remember that ever happening, but I would make the fix for free if it was my fault. But if I refused to do so the client should have a means to at least get a partial refund to pay for another freelancer to fix the problem.

 

Nevertheless, there should be (and supposedly is) a time limit for how long after an Upwork project is closed that the client has to find an error and request a fix from the freelancer.

kbhagtani82
Active Member
Kapildev B Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
9 of 19

Thanks Preston!! 

 

The conundrum here is, the client was already given enough time to respond and seek arbitration. He came back seeking arbitration after the deadline passed. Should he be technically allowed to getaway with deliberate tactics of playing tardy by giving him another opportunity?

 

My personal opinion and request to the concerned authorities would be to not entertain such requests. Given the fact that he was already sent 3 notifcations. Is it not enough ? 

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
10 of 19

As annoying as after-contract and after-deadline disputes are to freelancers, I really do believe these things are even more damaging to clients.

 

I think that clients obtain the best outcomes when the continuously focus on pushing their projects forward, and never try to get money back from freelancers.

 

Hire. Pay.

Hire. Pay.

If something doesn't work, then: Hire. Pay.

Don't look back.

Don't care about individual freelancers. Care about the project.

 

I just think that's the best way to get projects done with greater speed and quality.

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