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kire_t
Community Member

Client Ends Contract and Requests a Refund Due to Deadline Mishap, what do I do?

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?

ACCEPTED SOLUTION

It's weird if she's claiming that she can't use your ads at all - I mean, she missed the deadline, but was that the only time that she was planning to place an ad, ever? Maybe you could say that for a bit of extra money, you could revise the ads so that she could use them for a different publication at a different time. It's worth a shot; at least it'll look like you're trying to compromise and find a solution instead of just digging your heels in.

 

View solution in original post

19 REPLIES 19
lysis10
Community Member

The only options are to either give her the money or file a dispute, which will go into mediation where a mediator will help you two come to an agreement. If you don't, it's arbitration.

kire_t
Community Member

Will mediation cost me any money. Last time I had a client do this, it was for a smaller amount and people told me I would have to pay $200+ to do mediation. Is that still the case?

lysis10
Community Member


Kire T wrote:

Will mediation cost me any money. Last time I had a client do this, it was for a smaller amount and people told me I would have to pay $200+ to do mediation. Is that still the case?


No, but the mediator can't decide so you two have to come to an agreement. Arbitration is $300 and you will be forced to go into arbitration if you can't decide. Luckily, if the client doesn't payt he $300, you win and get the $300 back. Chances are this chick won't pay $300 for a $90 escrow.

It's weird if she's claiming that she can't use your ads at all - I mean, she missed the deadline, but was that the only time that she was planning to place an ad, ever? Maybe you could say that for a bit of extra money, you could revise the ads so that she could use them for a different publication at a different time. It's worth a shot; at least it'll look like you're trying to compromise and find a solution instead of just digging your heels in.

 


Christine A wrote:

It's weird if she's claiming that she can't use your ads at all - I mean, she missed the deadline, but was that the only time that she was planning to place an ad, ever? Maybe you could say that for a bit of extra money, you could revise the ads so that she could use them for a different publication at a different time. It's worth a shot; at least it'll look like you're trying to compromise and find a solution instead of just digging your heels in.

 


I just reached out to her letting her know I wanted to rectify the situation if she was willing. I did suggest what you told me, and I followed it up saying that I would be willing to repurpose the ads for her personal use. If that doesn't work, I will definitely try mediation.


Kire T wrote:

I just reached out to her letting her know I wanted to rectify the situation if she was willing. I did suggest what you told me, and I followed it up saying that I would be willing to repurpose the ads for her personal use. If that doesn't work, I will definitely try mediation.

Well done for trying to find a solution - people are usually reasonable if you give them half a chance. Good luck!

 

richardsmith94
Community Member


Kire T wrote:

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?

 

Based on what you've said, I would be pretty annoyed by what the client has done. I've know idea if what they're saying about the printer's schedule is true (btw do printers only print something at one specific time each day?), but it sounds like you've gone out of your way to assist the client and completed the work by the agreed due date.

 

I don't know (obviously) the exact nature of the work, but what's to stop the client now using the work that you've sent them without paying you for it? For the client to be suggesting that this is somehow your fault by saying 'by the 30th dosn't mean on the 30th' is, imo, playing games.

 

If it was me, I'd try mediation, because I would feel like I was being entirely reasonable in expecting to be paid for the work I'd done. 

 

Ps It would be interesting to know the client's work history and previous feedback?


 

jr-translation
Community Member


Kire T wrote:

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?


I am having a kind of déjà vu.

Did you use the "Sumit work for payment" button this time?

You should also forget about the concept of "my working hours". You are a freelancer and most are not able to work 9-5 and clients care even less about "your regular working hours". You should not let yourself get hired for jobs "outside your working hours" if you can make them "working hours". Your work history shows that you have problems with deadlines and availability.


Jennifer R wrote:

Kire T wrote:

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?


I am having a kind of déjà vu.

Did you use the "Sumit work for payment" button this time?

You should also forget about the concept of "my working hours". You are a freelancer and most are not able to work 9-5 and clients care even less about "your regular working hours". You should not let yourself get hired for jobs "outside your working hours" if you can make them "working hours". Your work history shows that you have problems with deadlines and availability.


Lol. The OP's work history shows that she's an extremely competent freelancer and you're response is...suprising. She has quite clearly completed the work on time and responded within a reasonable time frame to the client. What more would you like her to do, not sleep on the chance that the client messages her?


Jennifer R wrote:

Kire T wrote:

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?


I am having a kind of déjà vu.

Did you use the "Sumit work for payment" button this time?

You should also forget about the concept of "my working hours". You are a freelancer and most are not able to work 9-5 and clients care even less about "your regular working hours". You should not let yourself get hired for jobs "outside your working hours" if you can make them "working hours". Your work history shows that you have problems with deadlines and availability.


Throughout my history, there has only ever been once that I had an issue with a known deadline under which circumstances I was hospitalized. The other 2 times this occurred, my clients did not make me aware of their due dates or were non-responsive. Whether I was hired within our outside of my working hours, I always respond to a client within an hour of being messaged. 


Kire T wrote:

Jennifer R wrote:

Kire T wrote:

Hi, Community.

 

Here's a bullet point of what happened:

  1. I was hired at 10:02 pm on Saturday (outside of my regular work hours.)
  2. 10:24 pm: I let her know I would complete the project on Monday. She specified no time I needed to have this done by other than on that date.
  3. Sunday at 10:48 pm: I submitted 2 choices of ads to her after speaking with her briefly.
  4. Monday at 8:48 am: She responds with changes she'd like to see made. (Outside of my working hours.)
  5. Monday at 9:48 am: She says the printer just called her and asked for the ads and says he is printing in an hour.
  6. Monday at 10:30 am: I respond to apologize because I was unaware by what time it was due on Monday and tell her I will get it back to her within an hour. She thanks me and says he might still accept it.
  7. Monday 11:15 am: I send her the final files and apologize again for the inconvenience.
  8. Monday 7:45 pm: She responds that she cannot use the ads because the printer would not accept them. Says that she didn't know by what time she needed everything to be submitted.

 

Shortly after that, she ended the contract and requested a refund of the escrow saying that "The words asap and that it needed to be done by the 30th would convey the urgency of the project. It was to be done by the 30th, not during the 30th. We messaged at 10 am this morning with revisions, after we had begged for more time. The project was delivered well after the time required. I'm sorry that our advertisement wasn't able to be submitted and now the opportunity has been missed." (This is her edited response because this is not what she said originally, but what's there now.)

 

I responded: Yes you messaged me this morning with revisions on the day it was due. That is part of the reason why I didn’t know it was due at a certain time. I do take responsibility for not asking you if you’d be available to review my work yesterday so I could get the feedback sooner. But again, that would have hinged on my knowing it was due by end of day yesterday. Again, I take responsibility for that given I should have asked you if you needed it by end of day yesterday not end of day today.

 

What should I do? I spent 2-3 days working for $90. And while she couldn't use the work I did, I do think I should be paid part of that for my time since I lost 2-3 days worth of work.

 

Any advice?


I am having a kind of déjà vu.

Did you use the "Sumit work for payment" button this time?

You should also forget about the concept of "my working hours". You are a freelancer and most are not able to work 9-5 and clients care even less about "your regular working hours". You should not let yourself get hired for jobs "outside your working hours" if you can make them "working hours". Your work history shows that you have problems with deadlines and availability.


Throughout my history, there has only ever been once that I had an issue with a known deadline under which circumstances I was hospitalized. The other 2 times this occurred, my clients did not make me aware of their due dates or were non-responsive. Whether I was hired within our outside of my working hours, I always respond to a client within an hour of being messaged. 


You did not on Monday.

gilbert-phyllis
Community Member

You clearly have marketable skills. It's the "wraparound" stuff that's tripping you up -- Freelancing 101.

 

1) Get over the notion of "my regular work hours". You're the boss of your time. If you accept a job, then the time frame for completing it becomes, by definition, "work hours". If you don't want to do it, don't accept it. If you do, then don't whine about it later (even implicitly).

 

2) It's pretty obvious this client was scattered and let her own deadline get away from her. The extent of the blowback onto you could have been controlled if you had managed both project and client more effectively. Never make assumptions, always ask questions:
(a) If a deliverable is due on Monday, be sure you find out what time on Monday (and which time zone). If the client waffles, then pin down a time in writing. 

(b) Once you pin down when the final deliverable must be completed, find out what the client's availability will be to review your first cut, and decide together when you will submit that and when the client will provide feedback.

 

3) If you're doing graphic design, get informed about logistics of how clients use what you produce. For instance, this seems to have been a print ad for an inexperienced client. Print ads always have hard submission deadlines, so ask the client when her deadline is. It might prompt her to double-check, and save heartache all round.

 

What to do now? You got good suggestions from Jen and Christine about negotiating with the client to salvage something for each of you. If she pays nothing, she can't use anything you produced. But if she pays nothing, you get nothing. Also, Jennifer has a point -- this isn't your first "deadline mishap". You owe it to yourself to get your wraparound skills, e.g. client management, communication, up to the same level with your graphic skills. Resist the urge to stay on your high horse, try to find a win/win agreement with this client (or at least, a not total loss/not total loss agreement), and write off any partial loss as tuition.

 


Phyllis G wrote:

You clearly have marketable skills. It's the "wraparound" stuff that's tripping you up -- Freelancing 101.

 

1) Get over the notion of "my regular work hours". You're the boss of your time. If you accept a job, then the time frame for completing it becomes, by definition, "work hours". If you don't want to do it, don't accept it. If you do, then don't whine about it later (even implicitly).

 

2) It's pretty obvious this client was scattered and let her own deadline get away from her. The extent of the blowback onto you could have been controlled if you had managed both project and client more effectively. Never make assumptions, always ask questions:
(a) If a deliverable is due on Monday, be sure you find out what time on Monday (and which time zone). If the client waffles, then pin down a time in writing. 

(b) Once you pin down when the final deliverable must be completed, find out what the client's availability will be to review your first cut, and decide together when you will submit that and when the client will provide feedback.

 

3) If you're doing graphic design, get informed about logistics of how clients use what you produce. For instance, this seems to have been a print ad for an inexperienced client. Print ads always have hard submission deadlines, so ask the client when her deadline is. It might prompt her to double-check, and save heartache all round.

 

What to do now? You got good suggestions from Jen and Christine about negotiating with the client to salvage something for each of you. If she pays nothing, she can't use anything you produced. But if she pays nothing, you get nothing. Also, Jennifer has a point -- this isn't your first "deadline mishap". You owe it to yourself to get your wraparound skills, e.g. client management, communication, up to the same level with your graphic skills. Resist the urge to stay on your high horse, try to find a win/win agreement with this client (or at least, a not total loss/not total loss agreement), and write off any partial loss as tuition.

 

Stay on your high horse. It's not high and you've been treated like crap. You assumed nothing and told the client you would have the work completed on the Monday which they were apparently ok with (you actually completed it on the Sunday which is even more to your credit). I've no idea why others are saying you should have 'pinned this down', you completed the work cleary before the agreed deadline, end of.

 


 


Richard S wrote:

I've no idea why others are saying you should have 'pinned this down',

Really?

Maybe because if she had "pinned this down" she wouldn't be in the situation she's in.
Again.


Petra R wrote:

Richard S wrote:

I've no idea why others are saying you should have 'pinned this down',

Really?

Maybe because if she had "pinned this down" she wouldn't be in the situation she's in.
Again.


Of course! The OP was supposed to have 'pinned down' a problem that didn't exist when agreeing to the work. Interesting.

 

If the OP can see into the future, then I would defintely put that down as a skill on her profile.

 

Regardless of the printer's involvement, even if a specific time for delivery of the work had been agreed from the outset (lets say midday on the 30th), that still goes out of the window, through no fault of the OP.

 

 


Richard S wrote:

Petra R wrote:

Richard S wrote:

I've no idea why others are saying you should have 'pinned this down',

Really?

Maybe because if she had "pinned this down" she wouldn't be in the situation she's in.
Again.


Of course! The OP was supposed to have 'pinned down' a problem that didn't exist when agreeing to the work. Interesting.

 

If the OP can see into the future, then I would defintely put that down as a skill on her profile.

 

Regardless of the printer's involvement, even if a specific time for delivery of the work had been agreed from the outset (lets say midday on the 30th), that still goes out of the window, through no fault of the OP.

 


The problem is the poor communication. The OP claims (we only know her side) that the client did not communicate a deadline other than Monday. But asap and urgent were also part of the communication. We are trying to point out that you cannot accept an urgent job "outside working hours" without knowing the the actual deadline and then not react to client messages for 102 minutes. The time from accepting a job until you successfully handed over the work are working hours. We still do not know if she used the "Sumit work for payment" button this time nor what the changes were.

 

Clients can cancel a contract at any time just like freelancers can. But I am wondering what is worse, a contract without pay or a another feedback with poor rating for availability and deadline.


Richard S wrote:

Regardless of the printer's involvement, even if a specific time for delivery of the work had been agreed from the outset (lets say midday on the 30th), that still goes out of the window, through no fault of the OP


You cannot say "regardless of the printer's involvement" because that's the important factor here. When designing an ad for a publication, a graphic designer knows - or should know - that there's a hard deadline (both date AND time) and if you miss it, you're out of luck. So if a client contacted me with an urgent ad project and said that it was due on Monday, my first question would have been, "What time on Monday?" I also always ask them to send me the link to the publication so that I can read all of the specs for myself (because clients often give incorrect information about sizes or formats and don't realise that if the measurement is off by even a millimetre or two, you have a problem). 

 

So, while I agree that this is partly or evenly mostly the client's fault, it's not really helpful to assign blame. Clients often give inaccurate or incomplete information and part of the job is to ask questions so that you're absolutely certain of what you're doing. The OP wrote here asking for advice, so why not offer opinions about how she could have avoided this situation, instead of just telling her that she's right and the client is wrong? Disputes and mediation should be a last resort. 

 


Richard S wrote:

Phyllis G wrote:

You clearly have marketable skills. It's the "wraparound" stuff that's tripping you up -- Freelancing 101.

 

1) Get over the notion of "my regular work hours". You're the boss of your time. If you accept a job, then the time frame for completing it becomes, by definition, "work hours". If you don't want to do it, don't accept it. If you do, then don't whine about it later (even implicitly).

 

2) It's pretty obvious this client was scattered and let her own deadline get away from her. The extent of the blowback onto you could have been controlled if you had managed both project and client more effectively. Never make assumptions, always ask questions:
(a) If a deliverable is due on Monday, be sure you find out what time on Monday (and which time zone). If the client waffles, then pin down a time in writing. 

(b) Once you pin down when the final deliverable must be completed, find out what the client's availability will be to review your first cut, and decide together when you will submit that and when the client will provide feedback.

 

3) If you're doing graphic design, get informed about logistics of how clients use what you produce. For instance, this seems to have been a print ad for an inexperienced client. Print ads always have hard submission deadlines, so ask the client when her deadline is. It might prompt her to double-check, and save heartache all round.

 

What to do now? You got good suggestions from Jen and Christine about negotiating with the client to salvage something for each of you. If she pays nothing, she can't use anything you produced. But if she pays nothing, you get nothing. Also, Jennifer has a point -- this isn't your first "deadline mishap". You owe it to yourself to get your wraparound skills, e.g. client management, communication, up to the same level with your graphic skills. Resist the urge to stay on your high horse, try to find a win/win agreement with this client (or at least, a not total loss/not total loss agreement), and write off any partial loss as tuition.

 

Stay on your high horse. It's not high and you've been treated like crap. You assumed nothing and told the client you would have the work completed on the Monday which they were apparently ok with (you actually completed it on the Sunday which is even more to your credit). I've no idea why others are saying you should have 'pinned this down', you completed the work cleary before the agreed deadline, end of.

 


 


Because pinning down the completion deadline as well as a task sequence for initial submission, client review & feedback, and revision & final submission -- all ahead of that deadline -- would have prevented this whole "mishap". Because doing so represents such a fundamental best practice for FLing that it's a wonder anyone not adhering to it has any successful outcomes at all.

 

In any case, the current situation: We have a client who is frustrated and likely embarrassed about blowing her ad deadline. She genuinely feels like the FL let her down and failed to deliver and, to the extent the FL failed to handle the most basic aspects of project & client management, that's true. The client is not inclined to pay anything. And we have a FL who performed the work in good faith and delivered what the client specified, but too late to use for the intended purpose. The FL wants to be paid for the work. There's enough fault to share around, so if each party is willing to accept a share and set aside their own resentment and embarrassment, odds are they can reach some kind of compromise that includes at least a partial fee and no scathing feedback. If, on the other hand, the FL sticks to an "I was screwed, none of it was my fault" version of events, the client will be unlikely to fork over a dime, and furthermore will likely be ruthless with the feedback. One might bluff the other with the arbitration hammer, to settle who gets the $90. Nobody learns anything positive, it's a negative outcome all round.

 

IME, "Get off your high horse" is almost always the best first step in resolving a misunderstanding with a client. It's the first thing I tell myself. If all reasonable attempts fail, I can always climb back on that horse and charge around dramatically for as long as it suits me. But it's a self-defeating first move.

AveryO
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Kire, 

I'm sorry to learn about your experience with this client. Regarding the client's refund request, if you think that it's right that the client pays you for the work you have completed, you may respond to the request and click on the "I do not approve this request and want to file a dispute" option. This will then go to a dispute, and a Mediation Specialist will reach out to you within two business days once the issue has been reviewed thoroughly. You may read more about Fixed-Price Protection for more information. 

 

I would also like to share more information about what Jennifer has shared regarding mediation and arbitration. When mediation happens, users can usually come to an agreement among themselves, but if the parties are unable to agree in a reasonable period of time, the dispute specialist will make a non-binding recommendation. If that recommendation is rejected, the final option is to proceed to arbitration. This post by Valeria has shared more details about arbitration which will hopefully clarify the confusion between the two.


~ Avery
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