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Client saying he always work without fully funding milestones

Ace Contributor
Christine G Member Since: Nov 3, 2017
1 of 9

Hello.

I have been working with a client for translating large amount of text. He always made me sign particular contract, with full of extra requirements (penalties for delays, penalties for faulty translations, etc.) that I refused. We finally came to an agreement on a minimum contract, but staying in line with Upwork requirements for payement and after few days of discussions - and a lot of time lost - the client agreed in complying with fully funded milestones, and pay what was due.

On a second occasion, the same clients asked me to work again for him, and putting again extra requirements related to a 90 days period of time to review my work, with a last milestone for that review, asking initially to let 30% of the total amount in that last milestone, with a due date 90 days after I send my work. After spending another loooOOoong time in arguuing about what I consider to be too long, the remaining part of the escrow pending for 90 days in a last milestone was reduced to 5%. After 90 days (and not one day before...) I got my 21$ (yes, ridiculous...)

Again, that same client is now asking me to work for another translation, always the same product to translate, and divided the milestone into 2:
- First milestone: start of the project = 40% of the total sum agreed (well, I had to ask about what was expected from me at that point...)
- milestone 2: totality of the translation done

And the client funded milestone 1, but said that milestone 2 will be funded after I send the TOTALITY of the work. That makes milestone 2 (60% of the funds) not be in escrow and me, sending my full work without having the possibility to be sure to be paid for my work.

The client said he did not has any problem with the other 18 translators he was hiring, all beeing OK to accept that.
This is not my case and I know it is not the principle here. But is there any rules in Upwork's T&C that obige the client to fund the totality of the milestone before the work is sent ?

Many thanks to all ! Cheers,
Christine

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
2 of 9

A freelancer should NOT work on unfunded milestones.

 

If a client wants me to translate Document X, for $25, then there must be $25 funded in escrow before I begin work on that task.

 

When I finish the task, I send the work to the client using the official Submit Work button.

 

I ONLY submit work when the task is fully funded, of course, because I don't even start the work until full funding is in place.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
3 of 9

And clients have 14 days to review work and release payment. Not 90 days.

 

Why are we wasting our time with this goofball?

Ace Contributor
Christine G Member Since: Nov 3, 2017
4 of 9

an optimistic person when it comes to convince about reasonnable behavior... but apparently, I lost my time with this one Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
5 of 9

Christine G wrote:


And the client funded milestone 1, but said that milestone 2 will be funded after I send the TOTALITY of the work. That makes milestone 2 (60% of the funds) not be in escrow and me, sending my full work without having the possibility to be sure to be paid for my work.


If the client funds 40% of the value, you translate 40% of the words and that's it. You are not required to work on unfunded milestones.

(edited to add: I do sometimes work on unfunded milestones for long term, trusted clients, understanding that there is no way to get the money *should* the client not pay. But that's a different situation.)

 


Christine G wrote:

The client said he did not has any problem with the other 18 translators he was hiring, all beeing OK to accept that.


As my grandmother always used to say, if 18 of my schoolfriends decide to jump off a bridge, that does not mean I have to, as well.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
6 of 9

re: "As my grandmother always used to say, if 18 of my schoolfriends decide to jump off a bridge, that does not mean I have to, as well."

 

About to say the same thing. You beat me to it.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
7 of 9

Preston H wrote:

re: "As my grandmother always used to say, if 18 of my schoolfriends decide to jump off a bridge, that does not mean I have to, as well."

 

About to say the same thing. You beat me to it.


LOL, and I was about to ask her why she was wasting her time with this *bleep*

Community Guru
Louisa J Member Since: Apr 12, 2017
8 of 9

My first thought on this: Are you sure you want to continue working with this client? Smiley Happy

 

The fact he wants 90 days to review the work is way out of the 14-day release for a milestone, and in my opinion, they shouldn't be using a platform like Upwork if this is how they want to work. 

 

The bottom line here is: Are you happy with working like this, forever, which I think the answer is no as you brought it up. I can't see the client changing their ways. At the moment, this is a risk that you are taking regarding your financial payment. 

Community Guru
Robin H Member Since: May 28, 2019
9 of 9

He keeps returning because you obviously deliver good work.  It's a waste of time to keep negotiating at every turn.  You should have a "take it or leave it" mentality.  

 

If he really needs you, he will agree every time. 

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