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Difficult Client - Not Approving Milestones

Active Member
Owais A Member Since: Jul 24, 2018
1 of 4

Im having an issue with a recent client. In the beginning everything was fine and he seemed like a professional guy. He divided the project into 10 milestones which was fine by me. I have requested politely that he approve the milestone and move onto the next several times already. He keeps saying that the its not complete even though it is and wants me to add additional content/fearures. He said that he would approve the milestone after I added an XYZ feature, but he still has not. What should I do? I really don't want this to negatively impact my profile.
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
2 of 4

You don't have time for clients who play games.


How much money was this actually for? If this project was divided into 10 milestones, then maybe this first one isn't for very much money.


Tell him:

"Peter: I'm sorry if there was some misunderstanding about the scope of this milestone. The work for it is done. You are welcome to release payment for it, and the work will belong to you. Or I can issue a refund  and ownership of the work will remain with me. It is your choice."


If the client pays you, then you may do the next milestone. This time, DO NOT do any extra work. When the work on the second milestone is done, submit it and require payment.


If the client does not release payment, then you may wait 14 days to see of you get paid automatically. If the client requests futher changes, then close the contract.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
3 of 4

A fixed-price contract or milestone IS NOT THE SAME as an hourly contract.

A client may not simply request endless additional work (or ANY additional work) beyond the scope of the original agreement for that milestone task.


But Upwork's user interface has no way of knowing if that is what a client is doing. So it is up to us as freelancers to police this policy and make sure that clients do not do this. And of course it is the responsibility of all professional, ethical clients to behave properly with regards to fixed-price contracts.

Active Member
Owais A Member Since: Jul 24, 2018
4 of 4
I completely agree with what you mentioned. But I feel like the client has way too much power in these situations. He could easily leave a bad review. I have experienced this once with a client before who rated 5 stars after the job was done, and threatened to leave a bad review if I didnt do tasks which he assigned AFTER confirming the job. I said no as anyone would. Unsurprisingly, a week later my JSS dropped from 100%