I've had a very bad experience with a client on Upwork and I need your help in order to know what to do next. So if someone experienced this type of issues please comment.
To explain it briefly:
Client needed someone to write articles (needed lots of research - over 1 week of work).
Client hired me, I delivered the job.
Client said I have not followed their guidelines (not true), no proof from them.
Client wants the money back without requesting changes or providing feedback other than: you have not followed our guidelines.
I asked the client what was wrong so I can improve the articles if they are really so bad.
Clients mentions that saying what I have done wrong is not their job, they said that I should know it by myself.
Client asks for refund, I decline the refund. The dispute starts. I end up winning the dispute, client unresponsive.
Take into consideration that out of good faith I even re wrote one of the articles, once again they rejected it.
Client was not answering Upwork apparently in the last week or two, so they awarded it to me.
After Upwork awarded me the money and after I won the dispute, the client starts threatening me outside of Upwork (yes they searched me and they sent me messages) that they will talk to lawyers because they were fooled and robbed so they want a full refund (fixed price contract-full amount funded).
I feel 100% threatened but at the same time I do not tolerate this type of behaviour so I want to know what is the best way to end this: offering refund so they can stop harrassing me or keep it and face whatever they throw at me?
I am very concerned as I am 100% honest and I work hard for the work I deliver. I am sick of scammers like this and I genuinely do not want to encounter myself facing court or whatever because of dishonest people who threaten you outside of Upwork.
I worked over 1 week for the articles and they have not provided feedback other than saying that my work is not what they asked for and that they need the money back because I have not followed their guidelines.
Feedback would be much appreciated, Thank you.
Thank you for the answer, I've literally done that and the answer I got from Upwork is they will need clear evidence presented to support a violation of their policies and that if the client decides to go outside making claims they do not have control over it. I already sent them the messages.
I don't know what they paid you, but it probably wasn't the $250+ a single hour of an attorney's time will cost them. If they consult a reputable attorney, he or she will tell them it's not worth legal action. And, if you don't live in the same state as the client, that's a whole different level of expense and complication.
If I were in your shoes, I'd ignore them and let them go to court if they wanted to.
They didn't pursue the contractual remedies available to them by responding in the dispute process, didn't provide you with any opportunity to mitigate their alleged damages...and, the expense issue remains.
Pursuing litigation internationallly is extremely complicated and expensive, and chances are good that they wouldn't have any idea how to do it without an attorney and would have to pay an attorney more than they've paid you to even commence an action on that basis.
@Mariona P wrote:
They paid just under $1,000 and I live in a different country.
Ignore them. You are top rated and can therefore afford a bad feedback as you can have it removed.
From any legal standpoint there is nothing to fear. It simply is their problem if they are unhappy with the result. You can't sue a restaurant if you didn't like their meal either. Your problem if you didn't put more effort into picking the right one beforehand.
Regarding the refund: Keep in mind that if a client will be able to give you feedback as soon as he paid for a job. Meaning if he is an idiot anyways, he most likely will give you a horrible feedback.
Taking this into account you have to consider it's worth keeping the money and get a bad impact on your JSS, or if it might be worth more to give them a refund and have a clean sheet on your profile.
Again, thats up to you.
Aron, you should probably avoid giving out legal advice. From a legal standpoint, contract work and a meal in a restaurant don't have much in common at all. And, of course, there are circumstances under which one would not be legally obligated to pay for a meal in a restaurant that didn't meet threshold requirements.
This example was placed to display how hopeless their attempt to sue her would be, not to disply legal correctness, which is most likely different in each country.
Maybe in the US it's different, but in Germany you can't demand compensation after you already ate your meal. Even in case you become sick you have to proof that the restaurant knowingly served bad food. Restaurants are following the Käuferrecht and have to follow the "§ 440 Besondere Bestimmungen für Rücktritt und Schadensersatz" from the BGB (Bundesgesetzbuches).
You can clain replacement or correction of the service within the first 10% of your meal, afterwards you are automatically accepting the service and lose the right for compensation or replacement of the service.
Not sure why you are pointing out that it's not entirely the same or bossing me on what to give advice on, since her case is crystal-clear.
Well, for two reasons.
First, her case is NOT crystal clear. What makes her case low-risk is that the client is outside the country and it would be difficult and expensive to pursue.
Second, you've created an analogy that may be relied on by naive future freelancers reading this thread, and it may cost them big money since you have provided inaccurate information.
So, really, my response has little to do for you. It's for the benefit of freelancers who don't know any better and might be harmed by relying on your bad advice.
Even in case you become sick you have to proof that the restaurant knowingly served bad food. Restaurants are following the Käuferrecht and have to follow the "§ 440 Besondere Bestimmungen für Rücktritt und Schadensersatz" from the BGB (Bundesgesetzbuches).
I don't think the client is in Germany, the OP certainly is not, and neither want to sue a restaurant so the point is moot.
I have to say that it always concerns me when I see someone offer two-way (to, from, and between) translations in 5 "native - bilingual" languages. It will, invariably, go wrong sooner or later...