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Refund from Paid Hourly Countract

medelacerna
Active Member
Ma Ellen D Member Since: Jan 14, 2020
1 of 3
Will there be any chance that client will ask refund from the weeks that was already paid to me on my hourly contract?

So here is the thing, I am the longest bookkeeping assistant of my boss as far as I know and as far as it shows in his Upwork Client account. And, we had a very good relationship.

Sometime around December 2019, he hired another assistant who has more skills and knowledge to me. There is no problem with that. And, I just saw that he also hired an Accounting Admin around January 2020 which on my part, there is no problem. He can hire how many he can.

As health crisis heightens, lockdowns have been issued to different countries, including here in the Philippines. That was also the time when my boss, out of nowhere disappeared and did not reply to, so I left no choice but to talk with the another bookkeeping assistant. Also, this was the time when I had problems with internet and being online because of the health crisis, I had very little resources and very limited access to requests upgrades for my internet. Eventhough this is the case, I kept on doing my tasks and I had very little turn over rate for my reports. I also kept on messaging him over our corporate gmail account and skype to update him. But he never replied.

After a month he message me and inform me that he is concerned that I am not online, and I am not reporting progress which on my part is not true because I did email him several times, and I did report to the bookkeeping assistant. I am now suspecting that this bookkeeping assistant is backstabbing me for most of the time because our client mentioned that the bookkeeping assistant told him that I never reported to him, which is again not true, our conversation will show that I did report to him and I did finish my tasks he assigned to me. Also, my only problem with my work diary is my very low activity per screenshot, because again, when I worked at those times, my computer keeps on lagging as my internet is not in a stable, I had to wait for a bit to type in and research and do my job.

Now, I just want to know if he can ask for a refund from our hourly contract as I believe he is checking my work diary, I always see him online with no additional hiring post. And if he can do so, up to how many months he can ask for? And is there a way for me to defend myself knowing that I can show emails that I did report to him and update him with my tasks but he never replied.
feed_my_eyes
Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
2 of 3

Ma Ellen D wrote:
Also, my only problem with my work diary is my very low activity per screenshot, because again, when I worked at those times, my computer keeps on lagging as my internet is not in a stable, I had to wait for a bit to type in and research and do my job.

I've used the time tracker in places where the Internet cut in and out a dozen times a day, but it keeps on working even if you're offline; it still records screen shots and I could still enter memos, it's just that the online work diary won't update until you're back online (it then happens automatically). So, if you were tracking your time properly, there should be no problem. But if you needed the Internet in order to do the job, then you should have turned off the time tracker while you weren't working; the client can't be expected to compensate you for the times when you weren't doing anything.

danieldobson
Active Member
Daniel D Member Since: Feb 3, 2018
BEST ANSWER
3 of 3

Sounds like she is referring to slow internet and a browser that wont respond rather than issues with the time tracker.


As for whether he can get a refund from an hourly question I believe it depends. If the money is in review then he/she quite possibly can, if the money is in your account then possession is 9/10ths of the law. I think clients can open disputes up to 180 days after billing dates if they wish, but you would likely have to really drop the ball for that to happen. 

I think the best advice is not to sweat it. Whilst there are some really bad clients on here there are also ones who empathise and understand the effort you put in is rarely reflected by clicks on the timetracker. Communicating this to your client in the event that he/she is unhappy would be the best course of action.

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