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Client disputing hours, what is right thing to do?

mcinteerdata
Active Member
Alejandro R Member Since: Feb 5, 2020
1 of 7

Hi, so I recently was invited by a client to work on a project. The job was to scrape email data from a website. I've already developed a tool for this which I featured on my profile.

When talking to the client he said he would like a UI along with the tool (At the time the tool was just based on command line and api calls for sending queries.)

I suggested we try just running the scraper tool I already had so that the cost savings it provided would pay for the UI. He thought it was a potentially good idea and told me to talk with his colleque so I could understand their full process they are doing manually.

Chatted with her she thought that the tool should allow her to stop a scrape half way through and I believe she said she preffered a UI. Week later and about $5.8k in billable hours I saw a message that the contract was paused.

Got a call on skype that he wanted to talk to me since I never mentioned a price associated with the service. I told him i apologize as their seemed to be a misunderstanding I had, he said well not even a misunderstanding. He asked for a refund, I told him I could possibly do a refund and asked him how much he could afford to pay. Next day I get a message saying he wanted the full amount from that week refunded leaving me only 4 hours of compensated time.

Few key details:
I used screenshotmonitor.com to track hours as opposed to upwork since I use it for a few offsite clients
I completed the project in full with only testing to do (and I finished ~70% of testing too.)
I did misunderstand who is responsible for determining scope of work within his organization.

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

re: "what is right thing to do?"

 

The right thing for the client to do would have been to pay you for your time and work.

 

But the client did NOT do that.


The client committed an immoral act by requesting a refund of almost all of the money he owed you.

 

But there is nothing you can do about it, because the client played by the rules.

 

Time that is manually logged is not protected by Upwork. If a client requests that the time be removed, that request is granted.

 

What should YOU do?

Nothing.

Take the hit and move on.

 

Next time, if you want to make sure you get paid for you work, use Upwork's desktop time-tracker app.

aocumen
Moderator
Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
3 of 7

Hi Alejandro, 


I'm sorry to learn about your situation. It looks like you are already being assisted through a ticket, and the team will reach out to you once the case has been reviewed further. 

I would like to confirm what Preston has shared, manually logged hours do not fall under Upwork Payment Protection. To qualify for Upwork Hourly Protection, you must:

  • Have an Hourly contract
  • Work with a client with a verified billing method
  • Use an Upwork account in good standing
  • Log your hours with the Upwork Desktop App
  • Be visibly working on contract-related activity in your Work Diary
  • Annotate your Work Diary with memos or activities labels that describe the activity performed
  • Maintain adequate and fair activity levels
  • Stay within the contract's weekly limit

Please expect the team to reach out to you through your support ticket for more information about this issue.


~ Avery
Upwork
mcinteerdata
Active Member
Alejandro R Member Since: Feb 5, 2020
4 of 7

Is it still possible for me to win the case if I share the screenshots from my software? And if work is completed within scope?

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
BEST ANSWER
5 of 7

re: "Is it still possible for me to win the case if I share the screenshots from my software?"

 

No. Sorry.

 

re: "And if work is completed within scope?"

 

No.

View solution in original post

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

Alejandro R wrote:


I used screenshotmonitor.com to track hours as opposed to upwork since I use it for a few offsite clients

 

This is the only relevant part of your post.

If you did not use the Upwork tracker, you will be refunding in full because the client will win the dispute by default. That is what you agree to every time you add manual time.

 

mcinteerdata
Active Member
Alejandro R Member Since: Feb 5, 2020
7 of 7

Got an update from the client.
He told upwork support he doesn't care about dispute process and will not pay the amount.
He said they told him his account will be banned and he doesn't care because he can make a new account and I will be the only one impacted.

Sounds like he removed funds from his bank so even if it where possible for me to win he would not have any money available.

I came to an agreement with him that he will create a project for $2k fixed price with $500 x 4 milestones and he will release them weekly upon condition that I refund the project.

Any feedback on what to do here is helpful

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