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Re: Dispute an ended escrow project

justinkuah
Active Member
Justin K Member Since: Jun 23, 2017
1 of 6

I'd like to check how to dispute an ended escrow project. The client ended the project without providing feedback and paid for the first milestone only. Here's the contract - 3 milestones were agreed on the project scope. The first milestone is for the project kick-off so there's no work needed to be delivered here. However, the client did not approve this payment (milestone 1) until the first draft of work (milestone 2) is delivered. So he basically just paid for milestone 1 which is set at the minimal for the work of milestone 2 and ended the contract claiming that it's not what he's looking after. As freelancer, we trusted the client with the payment and did not request to approve the kick-off fee and delivered with the actual work. It's clearly a strategy used by irresponsible clients to get work done at no/minimal cost. In the contract page, there's no option to dispute as he has made the payment that he agreed on with the first milestone. I'd greatly appreciate your advice on how to take up this matter with Upwork. 

tinker_bell3
Moderator
Joanne Marie P Moderator Member Since: Nov 26, 2017
2 of 6

Hi Justin,

 

I checked your account, and I was able to locate the contract you're referring to. It looks like the client has released the payment for the funded milestone. In the future, you have the option to submit the first half of the project and submit the next one after the first milestone is approved and the second milestone has been funded. For fixed-price contracts, clients can fund each milestone and you submit the work for payment for each milestone. I also checked that the client has ended the contract. This means that they are required to submit feedback for you. The feedback period is 14 days from the end of a contract. The system is double-blind, which means that feedback won’t be visible until both parties provide it for each other. If only one party leaves feedback, it will be posted after the 14-day period has expired.

~ Joanne
Upwork
justinkuah
Active Member
Justin K Member Since: Jun 23, 2017
3 of 6

Hi Joanne, thank you for your prompt response. According to the job offer, the client agreed to pay $5 when the project is awarded and $50 after delivering the report. The payment that was paid is for the project initiation and not for the actual deliverable. I believe the contract covers the scope of the project in the job offer/proposal. As you suggested, fortunately I only submitted the first half of the project but that itself is worth more than 5 hrs of work. When the first part of the project was delivered, client immediately rejected the work claiming it's not what he's looking for without providing any specific feedback on what changes he require and ended the contract next day. I also have proves that the work is being used as the client actually edited the report as he wanted in the Google Sheet shared with him. In addition, I can also see that the client also hired other freelancer for the same task and made the same amount of payment. I sincerely hope that Upwok will take such issue seriously as client like this is clearly taking advantage of the platform and freelancers like us to get their work done with minimal cost. Appreciate if this can be investigated further,

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
4 of 6

Justin K wrote:

the client agreed to pay $5 when the project is awarded and $50 after delivering the report.,


That doesn't matter. If only $5 is funded, only $5 is disputable. The rest is "pie in the sky" - In other words: If only $5 is in Escrow, you only do $5 worth of work.

tinker_bell3
Moderator
Joanne Marie P Moderator Member Since: Nov 26, 2017
5 of 6

Hi Justin,

 

It is always best that before you accepted the offer, you discuss and make sure that you agree with the milestone amounts, deliverables, and deadlines prior to beginning work. Clients have the option to end the contract at any time if they need to. In the future, please make sure that you review the offer and make sure that you agree with the terms of the contract before accepting. 

~ Joanne
Upwork
justinkuah
Active Member
Justin K Member Since: Jun 23, 2017
6 of 6

Hi Joanne, it's really disappointing that there's nothing can be done about it even all the communication were done on this platform. As soon as the work was sent, his attitude change immediately and didnt want to discuss any possible changes. This is not the first time this client used this strategy to take advantage of talents on Upwork. There're other reviews of this clients which showed the same you can see the attached review. There has to be more steps taken to protect freelancers from these scammers. Anyway I'll be more careful in the future thanks again.

**Edited for Community Guidelines** 

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