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19bedf7a
Community Member

Client wants refund and issue new payment through different job

Hello,

 

I have a question regarding a client. I finished a job successfully last week, the client was happy with my work and the payment is pending. He now reached out saying he used the wrong payment method. He wants me to give a full refund on that job, created a new job with the correct Credit Card, and wants me to accept that new job, log the exact same hours, and get paid through that new job.

In short:

- Full refund for already finished but not closed-out job

- Accept the new job and log the same hours and get paid through that one

I have mixed feelings about giving a full refund on a completed job. What if he cancels the new job and vanishes and I don't get paid? Also, does a job without any payments hurt my JSS? I also don't want to completely ignore his request since he could leave a bad review if he gets upset.

 

Has anyone ever dealt with a situation like this?

ACCEPTED SOLUTION
wlyonsatl
Community Member

Vanessa,

 

How much money are you talking about? How well do you know the customer?

 

I once complied with a similar request from a client I knew well and everything worked out fine.

 

But Preston rightly points out the risks you are facing of not being paid at all and not having any recourse through Upwork if that happens. Also, your JSS can be adversely affected by closing a job with zero payments made.

 

If you do go through with this, at least ask the client to pay a minimal amount on the original contract and pay the remainder via the new contract.

 

Good luck!

View solution in original post

26 REPLIES 26
prestonhunter
Community Member

Um... no.

 

If a client hired you to do some work, and you did that work, then you should be paid for that work.


It is inappropriate for a client to ask for a refund.

 

It sounds like the client is trying to TRICK YOU and STEAL YOUR MONEY.

 

But no matter what, you should be polite and communicate in a professional manner.

 

What should YOU do?

First of all, you want to make sure that this contact is CLOSED, so that the client can not give you a bad review.

 

If the contract is still open, then tell the client: "Okay. Go ahead and close the job as the first step."

 

Once the client closes the job, he can no longer leave feedback, so he no longer has that leverage over you.

 

After the job has been closed, then you need to communicate as little as possible with the client. The client knows that what he is doing is wrong. But he does not necessarily know that YOU know he is trying to trick you and steal from you. The more time that goes by before he knows that you have caught onto his scheme, the less likely he will be able to do anything to claw back his money. So you can say somethine non-committal like "Okay, I understand. I'll contact Upwork and get this taken care of." Then, after you see something like that, you can contact us here in the Upwork Community Forum, to tell us what he is asking you to do. And we can repeat our warning to NOT give him money.

Thank you for your reply, Preston! 

The thing is, he does want to pay me. He wants to do that through a newly created contract, not the one I originally worked under. He says he updated the payment information. All of his reviews sound great, too. If he did something wrong on his end, should I completely ignore it?

wlyonsatl
Community Member

Vanessa,

 

How much money are you talking about? How well do you know the customer?

 

I once complied with a similar request from a client I knew well and everything worked out fine.

 

But Preston rightly points out the risks you are facing of not being paid at all and not having any recourse through Upwork if that happens. Also, your JSS can be adversely affected by closing a job with zero payments made.

 

If you do go through with this, at least ask the client to pay a minimal amount on the original contract and pay the remainder via the new contract.

 

Good luck!

Thank you, Will! I don't know this client well. This was our first job together and everything went smoothly until he wants to refund and re-issue the payment now.

I gave him the option to close out the current contract, I accept the new contract, log my hours through the app, close put the new contract and then refund him on the original one. I told him, as long as he leaves positive feedback this could be a solution. I think as long as my hours are logged through the app they are protected, correct?

re: "I think as long as my hours are logged through the app they are protected, correct?"

 

That is not correct.

Manually-logged hours are NOT protected in any way.

 

If you re-log hours, you aren't protected.

If the client decides to dispute those hours, he won't need to pay for them.

If the client's credit card can't be charged successfully, you won't be paid for those hours.

No. Your time on hourly contracts is only protected if you run the time tracker and show high activity levels and screen shots that prove you were working on the client's project at the time. Since the work is done, you cannot do that, and your pay would not be protected. 

data_divas
Community Member

Ask the client to create the new contract with one milestone for the full payment and send the offer with a note that this is for previous work done, wrong credit card was used, etc (so you have a record)

Accept that offer, summit the current work you already did for the new contract/milestone and then wait to get paid.

Once you are paid on the new contract/milestone then refund from the old contract/milestone.

Thank you, Julie. I think I will just re-log all hours on the new contract and then issue a full refund on the original contract. As long as the client leaves positive feedback on both, the original and new contract, it should be all good, right?

Can they not just add a different method of payment and pay you the full amount within the same job you have already? It seems like a lot to go through and leaves you open to not getting paid.

I have not thought about it that way! I will suggest this to my client since it seems to be the easiest way to handle this situation. I will log the same amount of hours, then refund him for the previously logged hours. I just hope the right credit card will be refunded when we solve it that way!

As I was typing my response, I realized that the fixed-price payment protection won't help if the client decides to request a chargeback with the new credit card. To be protected up to $2,500, you will need to accept a new hourly job and actively log enough 10-minute segments that qualify for hourly protection to meet your previous payout. (Note: your hourly rate could be much higher on this new contract, requiring fewer 10-minute segments).

 

Then, once you have withdrawn your payment from Upwork, refund the old contract and close it.

 

There is no reason to re-log all of the hours. If this is truly just a payment swap, then use a fixed-price contract for the exact amount that you were paid.

 

  1. Propose new fixed-price contract with the notations that Julie mentioned.
  2. Once client accepts the new contract, "submit" your work for payment
  3. Once payment is received and processed

re: "To be protected up to $2,500, you will need to accept a new hourly job and actively log enough 10-minute segments that qualify for hourly protection to meet your previous payout."

 

Re-logged hours are not covered by Upwork Payment Protection.

Oh, really? I would log them through the tracker app. Does that not count?

If you simply run the time tracker without doing anything it won't record time.

 

it is not a time clock.

I would run it while I am working on my computer. That is what he is suggesting anyways since the work is already finished. Let's see what he says. Support mentioned that I should just leave this to the client to figure out.

re: "I would run it while I am working on my computer. That is what he is suggesting anyways since the work is already finished."

 

That would NOT qualify for Upwork Payment Protection.

 

re: "Support mentioned that I should just leave this to the client to figure out."

 

I 100% agree.

 

If I am the freelancer, then I am being polite in my communication with the client. But at this point, I am completely ignoring anything he says about giving him a refund. For example, if he says "So can you do the refund today?" ...then I will tell him "In the middle of something. Will be able to check in with you tomorrow."

 

Always be polite. But that doesn't mean you let someone steal money from you.

By actively log, I meant keystrokes and cursor movements

Thank you, yes, that's what I was thinking. He has not replied yet, but this seems to be the savest way to go about it.

shansd
Community Member

Hi 

1- Is this a fixed or an Hourly task

2-I think you need not to refund 

3-If the client has an issue with your work he/she can serch upwork help to intermediate

4-Even for existing jobs client can update payment methods 

5-If the client having an issue with payment source ,can seperatly discuss with upwork 

 

Hope it helps 

Thanks

williamtcooper
Community Member

Hi Vanessa, DON"T DO IT. Common way for a business to pay nothing. Otherwise have the client open the new account and pay you first and then close the old account out. Thanks! 

erinvega2016
Community Member

Why not have the client pay for the work as a bonus?

 

When I read your question all I saw were RED flags.

gilbert-phyllis
Community Member

For the record: Closing a contract with zero payment made will only have an adverse effect on your JSS if the cliente leaves negative feedback. This has been the case for at least a couple of years.  

 

I have read that a zero-pay contract has a negative effect unless the client leaves positive feedback. In that case, it would be excluded from the JSS calculation. If he leaves negative feedback or no feedback, it affects the JSS negatively. Please correct me if I am wrong! In that case, I would be happy to be wrong ๐Ÿ˜‰

You are wrong - if the client leaves positive feedback or NO feedback, there's no impact on your JSS.

19bedf7a
Community Member

Thank you all! He says he used the wrong Credit Card and looking at his history of positive feedback from other freelancers, I am thinking that he is actually on Upwork for business, not to steal money. He just closed out the contract and left positive feedback. I asked him to contact customer support since that is what they suggested. I think he had a similar issue in the past and did not get help from support so I might have to help him. Accept the new contract, log hours and refund him. I am not sure how that is going to go with switching out the cards and getting the refund on one card and my new payment on the other card. Very confusing and I wish I didn't have to deal with this.


Vanessa K wrote:

Thank you all! He says he used the wrong Credit Card and looking at his history of positive feedback from other freelancers, I am thinking that he is actually on Upwork for business, not to steal money. He just closed out the contract and left positive feedback. I asked him to contact customer support since that is what they suggested. I think he had a similar issue in the past and did not get help from support so I might have to help him. Accept the new contract, log hours and refund him. I am not sure how that is going to go with switching out the cards and getting the refund on one card and my new payment on the other card. Very confusing and I wish I didn't have to deal with this.


I don't understand why the client can't just enter a new payment method on your existing contract and pay you as a bonus - he can do this even if the project is closed. As others have tried to tell you, starting a new contract and running the time tracker doesn't qualify you for payment protection, so would be pointless.

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