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Client changing milestones and required tasks

I have a client that offered a project with three milestones. I do video work so they included color grading and mixing audio for 40 videos. I completed the first milestone (first 12 videos), then the client "told" me that my next milestone has changed... Now he wants me animating 300 text animations rather than color grade the videos 13-40. He said it would take me the same amount of time, but that's not true. I already created the luts and color profiles for the color grading, all I would have to do is apply these to future videos.

Furthermore, this client is totally unorganized and on the rude side.

I completed all the work for the first milestone and did it very well and on time. Now he's trying to milk me for additional work without paying extra. I have a feeling I'm going to get a bad review from him because I'm not agreeing to these new terms. Any advice?
Community Member

A client can not "change" milestones and required tasks.

That is not how fixed-price contracts work.


If a client hires you using a fixed-price contract, then there is a specified task agreed to before the milestone is in place.

Then the freelancer does the work.

Then the client releases payment.

This is NOT complicated.


You need to be professional and polite at all times, but you need to cut off all attempts to change any milestone task that is in progress.


If a client wants to change a milestone task that is in progress, then the proper way for him to do that is to release any remaining escrow funds to the freelancer and ask the freelancer if he will be willing to agree to a new milestone task or contract.


HOWEVER: If you have completed a milestone and the client released payment for it, then the client does have a right to ask you to agree to a different contract, or agree to changes in the next milestone. The client can not decide this for you. The client may ask, or request.


It is up to you to decide whether or not to agree.


My advice to you is to not move forward with anything you don't agree to. If the money has already been released to you, then it won't hurt you to not do anything. Say VERY LITTLE. Something like this:


"Eugene: Thank you for your note. As we discussed previously, the next task is for me to create the Houston video, for a fixed-price payment of $560. If you fund that escrow payment, I will get started on that now. If you now want me to do anything different, that is fine, too. If you close the current contract, then we can set up a new contract to do the work that you now want done."


(AFTER the client closes the current contract and AFTER you have seen the feedback he provided you with, then you have the right to agree to another contract with the client, if you choose to do so. That would mean that he would need to agree to your fee. And of course the fee you quote him will take into account all that you now know about the client.)

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