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Can my client remove his review from my profile if he want?

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Active Member
Al Imran A Member Since: Jul 15, 2020
1 of 15

Hello,

Sorry, let me share the background first:

 

I am a Laravel, PHP developer. I worked with one of my clients in 8 contracts. All the contracts were for the same project using the same tech platform(Laravel). He was absolutely impressed and satisfied with my performance throughout all the contracts and gave me great public reviews. I had no issue with him.

While I was working in the last contract, suddenly he told me that, he decided to change the project's platform from Laravel to Flarum. I never worked in Flarum, so I told him to close the contract if he doesn't want to continue in Laravel. He closed the contract in the middle of me working on the contract and paid me reasonably. Another thing to note here is, he gave me good public reviews in all the contracts. I have no complaints until then. He wanted me to work on the new platform too. However, as I had no experience in Flarum, I was not confident working on that and suggested him to find an expert in Flarum. Seemed he got upset on that fact. He blocked me and unblocked soon after without any explanation or anything. I was ok with this as I had no contract running with him. Our last contract ended on 8th June 2020. We had no communication since then.

 

Suddenly, last week he knocked me again to ask if I was interested in working on the new Flarum platform or not. I explained to him all the things again and informed him of my observation on his project and Flarum. I offered him I will work if he can pay an hourly basis. He seemed understood and told me that he won't work with me then. Again, no problem from my side.


After two days, I got a message from him saying that I scammed all the money from him and he went bankrupt because of me. He guaranteed that he will get back every penny from. Reading this I was shocked. I thought he was an angry sensitive person having a bad situation in business, so now he is trying to make me responsible for his bad business decision. I explained to him what I did in all those 8 contracts and suggested to stay positive. Wished him good luck.

 

No message from him for 2 days. Then I got a message from the Upwork Mediation team saying that he applied for a dispute in the last contract. I provided all the relevant proofs(mostly screenshot from our Upwork messenger's chat) defending myself and explained everything. The client showed a screenshot of a webpage asking ransom showing my personal blog link! This fraud person claimed that I put this in his project, though he cannot prove that. I cannot prove either as we hadn't exchanged code through Upwork messenger but through git which is very usual. Seems Upwork dispute center doesn't judge anyone but just discuss the matter to get resolved. The client wants a refund of the last contract and all other contracts otherwise he will go for arbitration. He wanted to remove all the feedback he gave me. On the group chat, I told that as I have spent my time and effort on the contract I don't want to issue any refund. Upwork team said they believe this case needs not to go arbitration. Upwork team also told the client that, if he wants to remove the feedback of this last contract then they can assist them but if he wants to remove all feedback he needs to contact Upwork customer service. The client said if all his feedback is removed then he has no problem if I don't give any refund. I also said to remove all my reviews too though I did not know if it is possible or not.

 

Upwork mediation team asked me privately if I want to issue a refund or go for arbitration, and explained to me the charge of arbitration as the client is not willing to drop the dispute without refund. My contract payment was $119 and the arbitration charge is $291. So, either way, I lose money.

 

Then yesterday, I noticed that all his feedback was removed! Is it even possible? I worked so hard on all those contracts and the client can just remove them all even after months! What's the point of me working so hard and earning money and review on those contracts then? Now, I have to lose my earned money or go for arbitration to lose more money? This fraud person modified a file from the project completely and claiming that I wrote that file without any proof!


I am lost my hard-earned feedback now Upwork cannot even protect my money! What's the point of we freelancers working so hard then? Anyone can just act like innocent while we work with him. After the close contract and everything, he can just remove all his reviews and even get back his money! He is even telling that he will apply for dispute in other contracts too. As far as I know, it's not possible after 30 days of closing the contract. But I am seeing nothing impossible by a client as he has already deleted all the feedback.

My profile here is not new but I have just started working here newly being motivated to be self-dependent. Everything was going great, I was feeling confident. Then suddenly, this fraud person started these. I am just frustrated that I can do nothing, Upwork can not judge so everything going against me though my client closed the contract willingly, provided great feedback out of his satisfaction on my performances. Now, he can just reverse them all but I cannot reverse my work and invested time on his project! No idea what will happen to my JSS.

 


My questions are:


1. Why a client can remove his feedback even after more than a month. What's the logical reason behind this? He gave me those reviews out of his satisfaction which was a result of my hard work. I am not his review in my profile anymore.


2. What is the impact of those removed reviews? I have worked with him for months and in 8 contracts. Now, I have no review of those contracts. What will happen to my JSS?


3. What's the point of dispute if the mediation team cannot decide who is fraud and can take no action. The team just ask us what we want. So, showing proof and causes to the team are all valueless. Where I feel Upwork should even take action against the client for his all false claims and offensive activities, nothing is being decided by Upwork here.


4. Can the client really apply dispute on all other contracts too, my second last contract closed on 3rd June 2020?


5. Why I have to refund or go to arbitration? Either way, I pay money and he being successful in making my financial damage. Why Upwork cannot resolve the matter as he closed the contract and release payment by himself!

 

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 15
Al Imran A wrote:


My questions are:


1. Why a client can remove his feedback even after more than a month. What's the logical reason behind this? He gave me those reviews out of his satisfaction which was a result of my hard work. I am not his review in my profile anymore.


2. What is the impact of those removed reviews? I have worked with him for months and in 8 contracts. Now, I have no review of those contracts. What will happen to my JSS?


3. What's the point of dispute if the mediation team cannot decide who is fraud and can take no action. The team just ask us what we want. So, showing proof and causes to the team are all valueless. Where I feel Upwork should even take action against the client for his all false claims and offensive activities, nothing is being decided by Upwork here.


4. Can the client really apply dispute on all other contracts too, my second last contract closed on 3rd June 2020?


5. Why I have to refund or go to arbitration? Either way, I pay money and he being successful in making my financial damage. Why Upwork cannot resolve the matter as he closed the contract and release payment by himself!

 


1. Yes. They can't change it, and can't remove their PRIVATE feedback, which is responsible for your JSS. But they can remove their public feedback.

2. Wait and see what happens on Sunday

3. When was the last milestone FUNDED and when did the client file for dispute? If the contract is outside the dispute deadline of 30 days since the last milestone was FUNDED, you can simply decline to refund and that's the end of it. They can't force a refund and there will not be any arbitration.

4. I am assuming it was more than 30 days since the client FUNDED the last milestone? If that is the case, there is no dispute. Only "mediation" which has no teeth. The "dispute deadline", if there is no money in Escrow, is 30 days from when the last milestone was funded.

5. If the client asked for a dispute more than 30 days after the last milestone was FUNDED (NOT released, funded) You don't. (the "dispute deadline", if there is no money in Escrow, is 30 days from when the last milestone was funded.) - Do NOT let the mediator bully you into thinking you have to refund or go to arbitration. Once the dispute deadline has expired, all the "mediator" can do is encourage you to come to an agreement.  If the dispute was created after the dispute deadline, you don't have to prove anything and can just say "No refund!"

 


The client wants a refund of the last contract and all other contracts otherwise he will go for arbitration. !

 


This is clearly nonsense. Even if the last contract should be inside the dispute deadline (the client funded the last milestone less than 30 days before starting the dispute) - he can NOT dispute the other contracts from earlier. Even though a client can dispute previously approved MILESTONES in a disputed contracr, they can not dispute all previous contracts. Contracts are "stand-alone"

 

Please urgently check 2 dates: When was the last milestone FUNDED? When did the client initiate the dispute?

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Active Member
Al Imran A Member Since: Jul 15, 2020
3 of 15

@petra_r wrote:

Al Imran A wrote:


My questions are:


1. Why a client can remove his feedback even after more than a month. What's the logical reason behind this? He gave me those reviews out of his satisfaction which was a result of my hard work. I am not his review in my profile anymore.


2. What is the impact of those removed reviews? I have worked with him for months and in 8 contracts. Now, I have no review of those contracts. What will happen to my JSS?


3. What's the point of dispute if the mediation team cannot decide who is fraud and can take no action. The team just ask us what we want. So, showing proof and causes to the team are all valueless. Where I feel Upwork should even take action against the client for his all false claims and offensive activities, nothing is being decided by Upwork here.


4. Can the client really apply dispute on all other contracts too, my second last contract closed on 3rd June 2020?


5. Why I have to refund or go to arbitration? Either way, I pay money and he being successful in making my financial damage. Why Upwork cannot resolve the matter as he closed the contract and release payment by himself!

 


1. Yes. They can't change it, and can't remove their PRIVATE feedback, which is responsible for your JSS. But they can remove their public feedback.

2. Wait and see what happens on Sunday

3. When was the last milestone FUNDED and when did the client file for dispute? If the contract is outside the dispute deadline of 30 days since the last milestone was FUNDED, you can simply decline to refund and that's the end of it. They can't force a refund and there will not be any arbitration.

4. I am assuming it was more than 30 days since the client FUNDED the last milestone? If that is the case, there is no dispute. Only "mediation" which has no teeth. The "dispute deadline", if there is no money in Escrow, is 30 days from when the last milestone was funded.

5. If the client asked for a dispute more than 30 days after the last milestone was FUNDED (NOT released, funded) You don't. (the "dispute deadline", if there is no money in Escrow, is 30 days from when the last milestone was funded.) - Do NOT let the mediator bully you into thinking you have to refund or go to arbitration. Once the dispute deadline has expired, all the "mediator" can do is encourage you to come to an agreement.  If the dispute was created after the dispute deadline, you don't have to prove anything and can just say "No refund!"


Awesome!

 

Now I am feeling a bit confident. Till now the client applied dispute in the last contract only that ended 8th june 2020. He applied for dispute in 7th July 2020.

 

Now I know that he cannot apply for dispute on other contracts.

 

1. Just for clarification,  should I have to refund or go for arbitration as last contract seems under 29 days limit? The mediation team said: 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

Doesn't it mean I have to choose between refund or arbitration? Aren't they official representative of Upwork? Or they are just using smart tricks to convince me to refund? 

 

2. As the client removed his public feedback I can do the same for him? How can I?

 

3. In the dispute I am not seeing any accept or declined button. When(7th july, 2020) he applied for dispute I didn't even know that. I knew 3 days later(11 July) through email when the mediation replied saying that he/she is assigned to handle this dispute. How can I just decline it? Saying in the dispute chat?

 

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
BEST ANSWER
4 of 15

Al Imran A wrote:

Now I am feeling a bit confident. Till now the client applied dispute in the last contract only that ended 8th june 2020. He applied for dispute in 7th July 2020.

 


PLEASE read carefully. It doesn't matter when the contract ENDED.

Please check when the last milestone of the contract was FUNDED!!!!


The dispute deadline does not start when the contract ended, but when the last milestone was FUNDED!!!!

 

Go and check again please.

 

Yes, you could have your feedback removed, but frankly that would make you as petty as the client.

 

dispute assistance.png

 

and

 

dispute 2.png

 

As you can see, the vital date is when the milestone was funded, so please double check that.

View solution in original post

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
5 of 15

Al Imran, can you please come back and let us know when the last milestone was actually funded? 

Because if it was funded before the 7th of June, there are some questions to be asked...

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Active Member
Al Imran A Member Since: Jul 15, 2020
6 of 15

Hello,

 

Sorry I was thinkig that funding done once contract ended, forgot about the milestones, thanks a lot for your clarification.

 

Yes I have checked the last mistone of the last contracted was not funded but due date is 14th June. As he decided to end in the middle. The first milestone of this contract's status is paid, activated in 5th june and payment release date is showing 8th June, 2020.

 

You are absolutely correct he was not talking about refund of all contract in same dispute but separete disputes in other contracts too. So, I wanted to know if he can apply for dispute in all 7 other contracts too as it kills a lot of time an effort. 

 

The second last contract's milestone was activated on 2nd June, payment released 3rd June. So, I think he won't be able to apply for dispute on other contracts.

 

Thanks for your prompt response.

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
7 of 15

Al Imran A wrote:

The first milestone of this contract's status is paid, activated in 5th june and payment release date is showing 8th June, 2020.


In that case (if the milestone was funded on the 5th of June and the client initiatied the dispute on the 7th of July) the client missed the dispute deadline by 2 days and should not have been able or allowed to dispute (only mediation) AT ALL and the mediator talking about arbitration would be entirely inappropriate!!!

 

The other contracts are WELL outside the dispute deadline.

 

If Upwork is allowing clients to file disputes after the dispute deadline, then the system is being abused by Upwork in favour of the client and Upwork are in violation of their own terms of service.

 

I also fee that the client (and the mediator, to a degree) are manipulating you about arbitration. Even if the dispute was valid, I do not believe the client would REALLY pay $ 291 to get $ 100 and something back. If I were you, and I could afford it, I'd pay the $ 291 to call their bluff. I would bet the client would pull out, not pay the $ 291, and you'd get your arbitration fee back AND get to keep the disputed amount.

 

But if your dates are correct, the whole dispute is invalid.

 

 

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Active Member
Al Imran A Member Since: Jul 15, 2020
8 of 15

Wow, then I have nothing to worry about!

 

This is strange!

A representative from Upwork(the Upwork Mediation team) who handling the dispute is not even looking at the anything specific to the contract and milestone! I wonder how the client even applied for dispute if it's out of the deadline. Is it just for a discussion to come to an agreement? 

 

Now, I feel more confident to talk with the team. 

 

Thanks a lot. Almost lost motivation to continue working here. You are awesome. 

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
9 of 15

Al Imran A wrote:

 

This is strange!

 


Make sure you come back and tell us what happens next please... And do NOT let them bully you into giving any money back to the client if you did the work properly. Stand up for yourself!!

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Active Member
Al Imran A Member Since: Jul 15, 2020
10 of 15

Hello Petra,

 

The payment was release on 8th June, 2020 and he applied for dispute in 8th July, 2020(Sorry I said 7th July). 

 

They are not counting from the milestone activated date but the payment release date. The mediation team is saying that it was the 30th day when he applied for dispute, so they cannot stop the client if he want to go for arbitration. 

 

So, still the situation is either I refund $199 to him or go for arbitration paying $291. 

 

By the way, if I refund, what will the impact of it in my JSS?

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