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Question about milestones

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Community Leader
Joshua T Member Since: Apr 18, 2016
1 of 16

Say I accept a $900 video job for a client who divides it into three milestones: storyboard, rough draft, and final draft.

 

The first milestone goes off without a hitch. After submitting work for the second milestone, the client has what's essentially a finished product -- just revisions and an additional clip lifted from the main video remain for the third milestone.

 

Say the client becomes incredibly unresponsive and the second milestone is approved automatically after 14 days. Now, the third milestone, a full 1/3 of the agreed-upon price, is unassigned and in limbo.

 

As a freelancer, what are my options if this client never surfaces again?

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Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
2 of 16

Deleted, sorry I didn't read your post correctly.

 

All you can do is to wait for your payment of the second milestone. But your position for the entire job remains a little hazy. Provided you did not supply the work for the final milestone, your client can take the work you have given him and state he has paid you for it, so even if the job was nearly complete and your client can run with it, I don't think you have  much claim - bummer.

 

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Community Leader
Joshua T Member Since: Apr 18, 2016
3 of 16

@Nichola L wrote:

Was the second milestone funded before you sent off the work for this section?


Yes. And approved 14 days later automatically.  

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Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
4 of 16

I think you can probably forget the third milestone, unless of course, as can happen, there has been a genuine glitch in your client's life.  What does his work history look like?

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Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
5 of 16

Hi Joshua,

 

If the third milestone is funded, you can request for it to be released once you complete the work and it will be released 14 days later. If the third milestone is not funded, you can either ask the client to fund it before you do and submit any work for it or if the client becomes completely unresponsive, you can eventually close the contract yourself.

~ Valeria
Untitled
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Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
6 of 16

@Valeria K wrote:

Hi Joshua,

 

If the third milestone is funded, you can request for it to be released once you complete the work and it will be released 14 days later. If the third milestone is not funded, you can either ask the client to fund it before you do and submit any work for it or if the client becomes completely unresponsive, you can eventually close the contract yourself.



@Joshua wrote:

 

"Now, the third milestone, a full 1/3 of the agreed-upon price, is unassigned and in limbo."

 

I took that to mean that the third milestone has not been funded.

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Active Member
David I Member Since: Jan 20, 2019
7 of 16

Well that is just not fair - from a freelancer's point of view.

Clients can easily take advantage.

Why doesn't UpWork automatically assign the remaining milestone after, let's say, 30 days?

Thanks,

David

 

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Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
8 of 16

David I wrote:

Well that is just not fair - from a freelancer's point of view.

Clients can easily take advantage.

Why doesn't UpWork automatically assign the remaining milestone after, let's say, 30 days?

Thanks,

David

 


Because there are about 100 legitimate reasons the final milestone might not happen, or might not happen within a specific time frame. And, Upwork has no right to charge the client's credit card for a milestone the client hasn't created. 

 

You made a mistake in the way you set up your contract. That's not unusual in the beginning, but it was your mistake. Upwork isn't here to dictate the terms of an agreement between the client and freelancer, and the terms you agreed to were to do the first two milestones for the price you were paid. That was a bad deal, but it's one you have a right to make. 

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Community Leader
Joshua T Member Since: Apr 18, 2016
9 of 16

Correct. The 2nd milestone was approved by Upwork at 14 days out. It represented the bulk of the work for this project and the client has a useable product in their hands.

 

The 3rd milestone has not been funded, and it was 1/3 of the total agreed-upon price. Also agreed upon were reimbursement milestones for assets purchased, by me during the 2nd milestone phase.

 

It sounds like I can kiss that $400 goodbye, which is BS. If a job is accepted with an agreed upon price, that should fund ALL milestones at the start. If the client wants to dispute the release of milestone funds at some point, that should be on them.

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Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
10 of 16

@Joshua T wrote:

.

 

It sounds like I can kiss that $400 goodbye, which is BS. If a job is accepted with an agreed upon price, that should fund ALL milestones at the start. If the client wants to dispute the release of milestone funds at some point, that should be on them.


 If that is your suggestion (fund all milestones) then that is YOUR responsibility to make sure that's not only understood by the client, but also to make sure it's all funded. This is your business, You are providing a service. You detail and dictate the terms and amounts.

 

Also, in the future, if you do a similar job, and what you do on that 3rd milestone is very easy and very quick, then you assign only a small amount to be funded for that last milestone. Figure out, what it would cost to do just that last milestone and that's the amount to be funded. So instead of having $400 allocated for that milestone, you could have it funded for = let's say $100 or less. So  your milestone would be, #1 for $600 #2 for $500 and #3 for $100.

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