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Community Member

Client "created a milestone" without making a deposit

So, here is the story:

I was hired for a transcription project. We agreed to seven audio hours a week. The client said that he would put the money in the escrow every week after the work is done and he can see, how many hours and minutes is the exact audio time transcribed. I told him I was not comfortable working for about 20 hours in a week meaning hundreds of dollars without having the money in the escrow. Then he sent me the first audio file about 20 minutes long and put the money in the escrow for that. It was kind of a test job. That I can understand. Not uncommon, and he put the money in the escrow for that. 

I transcribed that audio file and submitted my work. He told me to continue. I told him again the same thing about working without a deposit as before. He told me there were two options: 1) he will make a milestone for every file separately (he knows that takes time and there is no way I could do that 7 audio hours a week by waiting for the next milestone for every about 15-25 minutes file.) OR 2) I would work the whole week without the deposit and he would create it when the work is done. I told him again I was not about working for hundreds of dollars and hoping for the best. (Not in those words obviously). 


Then he made "a change to the contract" (the one for the first milestone, which he had not released the money) and wrote there that 7 hours and the amount to be paid. But he didn't make any kind of deposit. So the money is still not in the escrow. I have never seen anything like this. And as I have not hired anyone I don't know what that "change to the contract" is meant for. Maybe he thought that I think he made a deposit.


Now I am about to tell him no. Too risky. Also, the files to be transcribed are split into two. Speaker 1 and speaker 2. He is counting only the speaker 1. So only half of the time. But that is another story.


What would you say to him? What is that change to the contract actually meant for? You don't have to make a deposit, that I can see. Just write something there. If I were new here I would probably have thought he actually made a deposit and the money is in the escrow.

Community Member

You could say, "I see you revised the first milestone to include 7 hours of work. Great. As soon as that milestone is funded, I can get started." 

Or, if you are certain he created the milestone but did not fund it, you might consider ending the contract. I wouldn't trust them to pay at this point because they've been so difficult. However, the client might give you a bad review because you canceled. So I think you are in a bad situation.What does the client's review and hiring history look like? 



Community Member

I would say: sorry, but we don't seem to be a good fit. Wishing you all the best with your project!

Community Member

I am in a bad situation, that is for sure. 

And yes, I am sure he didn't make a deposit. Whatever that making a change to the contract is meant for it sure ain't this. 

And, no, I can't take the risk of working for the whole week and wishing for the best.

You are both right. I just got a bit confused as I have not seen anything like this during these years.

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