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How Long is Too Long Not to Hear from Client?

I have a client on Upwork that I haven't heard from in over 3 months (and only once in 4 months). The contract is still open and I reached out several times for instructions but haven't heard back.


I've got myself busy on other work outside of upwork in the mean time and have gotten so busy that tbh I'm not sure I'll have time to continue working for the Upwork client if they should suddenly decide they want to proceed.

Is there a way to end the contract based on clients absence? I don't want to end up with a bad review.

Community Member

I'm assuming you've completed all work that the client has asked for so far. If that's the case, then do you have the client's contact info outside of Upwork? I would try reaching them through email or some other means besides Upwork. Sometimes, clients don't check their Upwork messages or not very good about checking them. There is a much better chance they'll respond if you send them an email instead.


If you still don't hear from them, then personally I wouldn't worry about it. Just end the contract and mark it such that the job was completed successfully (because it was). Then the client can post a review later if they ever decide to show up again. I wouldn't worry about a bad review since you can't reach them anyway.


If you're busy with another job now, then I would end the contract. Since the contract has ended, you're off the hook for having to do any more work with that client should they all of the sudden show up one day and ask for more work.

Community Member

Yes. You can always go to 'My Jobs' click the name of the Job, click the '...' menu toward the top right, end the contract yourself.  There used to be a 'reason' you could give for closing the contract that said something like 'client unresponsive', but they just recently changed all the screens around again, so I don't know if that 'reason' is still available.


IMHO. 3 months is way too long, especially if you never started any work for the client.  Unless a client informs me up-front that the project/work will be delayed (until X date) after they issue the contract, I don't think I would wait more than a week or 2 without a valid explanation for the delay before closing the contract and moving on. I definitely wouldn't wait if they just aren't responding and aren't explaining anything at all.  It sounds like the client is either playing games, did a hire without thinking it through completely, is truly unavailable/incapacitated and can't respond, locked out of their account, or simply lost interest in the project altogether and was too rude to tell you what was going on. 


Your best bet is to close the contract out while the client is still 'ghosting', and chances are they won't notice the email they get saying the contract was ended and won't log back in to Upwork during the 14-day 'window' they have  afterwards to leave a 'review'.  You would think a client that 'ghosted' wouldn't leave a bad review about the freelancer, but you never know.  Best to just close that contract out as 'quietly' as possible and let the 'ghosting' client vanish in the rear view mirror

Community Member

Okay thanks for your input. I did in fact do work for them but I mean it's been more than 3 months since I heard from them and in 4 months I had one message from the.


I'll cancel the contract and if they want to continue at some point they can get in touch.

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