I have an hourly contract with one of my clients. But the problem is, for the past three weeks or so, the client has been pausing and reactivating my contract with no communication. Infact, the first time she paused the contract was when the payment was due! The initial 3.5 hours done and submitted four weeks ago has not been paid yet the client has gone MIA, and isnt responding to my requests to make a payment then possibly end the contract. I have reached out to her severally through email, but none of my mails has got a response. Please help me chart a way forward.
Christine O wrote: ...the first time she paused the contract was when the payment was due! The initial 3.5 hours done and submitted four weeks ago has not been paid yet the client has gone MIA,
Did you track your time? If you tracked your time you get paid automatically.
You don't "submit hours" - you use the tracker (ideally) or manual time (not protected) and the client gets charged automatically.
If you did neither and the contract is paused, there is nothing you can do and it isn't even the client's fault if you didn't use the hourly contract the way it is supposed to be used.
@Christine O wrote:
Yes, I tracked my time and it was 3.5 hours. I entered it manually as agreed with the client. All went well but on the day that the payment was to materialize as per the schedule for hourly contract, the client paused the contract! How does automatic payment work if a contract is paused just before payment is made? Then when the contract got reactivated, we were in a different week, so the previous time taken was not considered. This clients trend lately has been to pause then reactivate the contract after a few days. I have not done any more work for her, and dont think I will, but just want to get paid for the time. Please advice.
It has no effect. If the client did not dispute your hours the client is charged and you are paid automatically, so if it is an hourly contract and you CORRECTLY tracked your time (using the Upwork tracker **OR** adding manual time to your work diary) you WERE paid for those 3.5 hours. What makes you say you were not?
I also don't see an open (in progress) hourly contract on your profile?
When exactly did you add those manual hours?
When you go to your Reports Page, don't you see those any funds anywhere there?
The contract I am talking about is ID 19728701. As you can see, the funds were released and then for reasons I am not aware of, the money was returned to the client as a refund. That was really heavy work that was time consuming and with a lot of pressure from the client and then...funds were released and then refunded to the client. Please check this contract and help me understand what happened.
I'm sorry to hear that. In addtion to what Petra explained, you may want to check this help article that explains about Upwork payment protection.
Please send me a DM with the contract ID so that we can check this for you as well. Thank you!
Thanks for your response. The contract ID is 19728701, The funds were released and then I dont understand what happened because it appeared as a refund to the client. Please help me understand this. Thanks in anticipation.
Please refer to the notification sent to you by the team about this contract which includes detailed information about the refund. If you are unable to find the email, then you should also be able to access the support ticket here.
This happens when there is an issue with the client's billing method and the hours that you worked did not qualify for Upwork Hourly Protection.
So in this case you would have to communicate with the client directly in order to get paid via a bonus payment for the hours that were reversed since Upwork wouldn't be paying for those hours.
The scenario you are describing doesn't make sense.
Clients expect you as the freelancer to understand how billing and payment work on the Upwork platform. You need to understand all of the processes to protect yourself against fraud too. So, before taking any other contracts, study the new to Upwork posts and TOS and learn the steps you must take to accept a job and get paid.
I thought I followed all that was required. What happened was new to me as the funds were released and just before the payment date, contract was paused and funds returned to the client.
If the client was using a fraudulent credit card or otherwise refused to pay, you won't be paid. I would not work with this client anymore unless the arrange to pay you for the unpaid hours. (Honestly, if they do make up for the loss, I'd get the payment and still not work with them anymore.)
If you enter hours manually, it is very easy for a scammer posing as a client to avoid payment. In your case, it is impossible for any of us to know if that it what happened. You'll need to read the notice you received.
Only hours with tracked activity and a clear memo indicating the nature of the work are backed by Upwork. If you don't follow the rules for using the time tracker, you are at the client's mercy.
I actually tracked the time, funds were released and shortly refunded to the client. From what I have read, I am to request the client for a bonus payment of the amount that was refunded. The problem is that the client is not responding to my emails. Though the contract is currently active, I do not plan to do any more work with this client and looking to get this money then hopefully end the contract.