Reply
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Reply

Client asking for work below legal minimum wage

Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
11 of 25

Respectfully, Preston, I think you've missed the point of what I'm saying. I understand perfectly well how freelancing works, having been a freelancer myself for over 17 years. What I'm saying is that this particular project does not fit the definition of freelancing. Unfortunately the rules governing this forum prevent me from giving more details than that. 

 

BTW, far from finding employment regulations "restrictive", I'm very grateful to live in a country that has laws to prevent its workers from being exploited.

 

Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
12 of 25

Christine,

 

There is a minimum hourly rate of $3/hour on Upwork. With some exceptions relationships between clients and freelancers on Upwork can't be classified as employer-employee relationship and therefore minimum wage laws don't apply to those relationships. Please, refer to article 8.7 of the User Agreement for more information.

~ Valeria
Untitled
Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
13 of 25

Valeria, based on what Christine has described, the job in question very likely cannot be legally classified as freelancing in the U.S. 

 

Does Upwork  have any policies/procedures relating to that issue?

 

I'm not suggesting that's Upwork's responsibility...just want to know whether there is an internal process for addressing the issue.

Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
14 of 25

Tiffany,

 

If the client determines that their relationship with a US-based freelancer they are planning to hire is better classified as employer-employee relationship, they can use Upwork Payroll Service.

~ Valeria
Untitled
Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
15 of 25

@Valeria K wrote:

Tiffany,

 

If the client determines that their relationship with a US-based freelancer they are planning to hire is better classified as employer-employee relationship, they can use Upwork Payroll Service.


 What I was asking about was whether Upwork had any position/policy on clients illegally classifying relationships as freelancing when those relationships are defined by U.S. law as employment relationships and the misclassification violates the Internal Revenue Code.

 

I realize the answer may be "no," and I think that would be fine, but it would be good to know whether that's an Upwork issue or one the freelancer would need to address directly with the IRS or DOL.

Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
16 of 25

Thanks for your reponse Valeria. This client is offering full-time employment to applicants for $1.50 per hour, so it does seem as though it's against Upwork's TOS? I tried to report the proposal but there was no option in the drop-down list that really applied to the situation.

Community Guru
Jess C Member Since: Feb 18, 2015
17 of 25

@Christine A wrote:

Thanks for your reponse Valeria. This client is offering full-time employment to applicants for $1.50 per hour, so it does seem as though it's against Upwork's TOS? I tried to report the proposal but there was no option in the drop-down list that really applied to the situation.


When I see jobs like that that offer what looks like full time employment, or others that require a freelancer to work in the client's office, I usually flag them as "requesting to work outside of Upwork." It's not 100% accurate but it's close...

 

One would hope that cheap clients like that wouldn't get many applicants, but there's nothing preventing them from asking. Though how are they getting around the already ridiculously low $3/hour in their posting?

Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
18 of 25

They're getting around it by posting it as a fixed price project, but then specifying in the description that this is the monthly fee for 40 hours of work per week. It seems to be a bit of a flaw in the system.

Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
19 of 25

Christine,

 

Could you please click on my name next to this post and send me the link to the post in a private message?

 

Thanks!

~ Valeria
Untitled
Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
20 of 25

Thanks very much Valeria - I've just emailed you.

TOP SOLUTION AUTHORS
TOP KUDOED MEMBERS