Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Unresponsive/irresponsible Client

Active Member
Beka I Member Since: Sep 2, 2017
1 of 14


I`m Beka and I`ve started to work as a freelancer on Upwork since May. 
I had no difficulties to get the jobs here since I have strong experience of working for various high end production houses or studios and I can deliver high quality results and meet all the deadlines.
I`ve successfuly completed all of my jobs here and I`ve got 100% job success score and also waiting for Top Rated Status. 
The problem is that I`ve started a low budget contract with one client in May and what was the 2 days of work became an endless task. 
The client is very irresponsible and everytime it takes more than 5 days for him to provide the necessary assets which is must to continue working on project. 
Also he is trying to add completely new things and ideas which wasn`t even talked while we made agreement in the begining. 
So this situation started on May and continues until now. 
Usually I directly cancel that type of clients but on Upwork it`s about the reputation from the client so I can`t do that here. 
He even wasn`t going to accept the Milestone and because the client wasn`t responsive for month, Upwork system approved the milestone.
But he still isn`t going to close the contract and continues to add extra ideas or changes. 

So the reputation is very important for me since I`m going to fully switch on Freelancing here so what can I do in this situation?
I`m thinking of closing the contract with myself but because the type of the client, he may put the negative feedback there without the reason. 

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
2 of 14

idk I'd prolly wait until top rated and then if I close it and they leave a bad response I can have it removed

Community Guru
Ryan C Member Since: Feb 3, 2017
3 of 14

Hello Beka,


You can close your contract yourself but please talk to your client first. Sort things out with your client so if you close your contract with him/her, your client won't be mad or leave you bad feedback.


To learn more about closing your contract, please click here.

Active Member
Beka I Member Since: Sep 2, 2017
4 of 14



Thank you for your quick answer. 
But what happens if you finished the project, sent in to client but the client continues to add new things and the changes to the video but he isn`t going to pay for it?
And he says he will leave bad feedback if I didn`t make all this revisions?  And it continues endless?

It`s not the exact case for me for now but looks like it will be. So what happens in that kind of scenario?

Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
5 of 14

Beka - There are a few things you can do.


You can continue working on his project and hope that you achieve top rated very very soon so that you can delete any feedback, public or private that you receive.


You can report him for "threatening" you and provide documentation of those " do my revisions or I'll give you bad feedback" statements. 


And you can have a discussion


Hi John (or whoever)

The requirements of the originial job have been completed and I have gone above and beyond that with the revisions that have been given to me. I will finish this last revision for you. If you have any more revisions to be made I will be happy to work on them, Just close this contract and open another one up for the extra revisions, or you can add a new milestone and fund it for $XX. Once you do that I can then continue to work on the revisions you send to me. Perhaps, even better then that for both of us, is to open another contract and make it an hourly contract.

Community Guru
Lucio Ricardo M Member Since: May 16, 2018
6 of 14

Ha. Some clients hear hourly and go running away. If some clients want complex projects for $40 fixed price. And keep making new requirements. If we are not candy machines, and this thinking us as children that the effort of earning the money is from our parents.

Community Guru
Bojana D Member Since: May 2, 2011
7 of 14

If you want to try to continue working with him, politely ask him to switch the contract to hourly. Explain that you've already done plenty of work over the amount you've agreed on, and that you can continue to add and change the work only with an hourly contract that covers each and every new change in place. I've found that paying for every minute of work drastically reduces the client's desire to "just try out" new things.


The other possibility, if you just want out, is to politely inform him that you can't continue to work on the project, wrap it up, give him the latest batch of files he's paid for, and close it.


If the client uses feedback as blackmail tool, screenshot the correspondence, report him to CS. 


Community Guru
Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
8 of 14

When I was in that situation, I communicated my intention to end the contract clearly to the client and gave him some time to find a replacement. Then I closed the contract. (Note: I was getting paid for ongoing milestones). In your case, if there are no milestones and no funding -- just stop doing work. The client can throw out any requests he wants but without funding, you are not obligated to work on them. 


Report the client's threats and behavior and allow CS to handle it. However, you may still feel the impact on your JSS. The mods have offered some assurances that each case is evaluated, but I am not aware of the specific policies or procedures in place to protect freelancers who are being blackmailed into providing free work. 


Your protection is to say "NO." Then leave honest feedback about the client. 

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
9 of 14

From what I can tell he's really close to TR. He should only have a couple weeks..maybe a month? He should wait to hit TR and then do it. If he does it now, the guy will destroy his JSS and he'll be pulling himself out of a hole for a while and he can kiss TR goodbye.


If he waits until he hits TR, he doesn't have to worry about being polite or anything he can just close the contract and let the guy rant and rave but the rating will never see the light of day. It would be a fun little backhand to a client that deserves it. Pushed him around for months and he basically turns around and b slaps him. lol

Community Guru
Lucio Ricardo M Member Since: May 16, 2018
10 of 14

Some clients think that fixed price contracts or milestones are an umbrella to allow endless changes. No, they are good for when the freelancer don't know how much time will take to him/her to do the work, so that the client feels safe about the budget. But it is not a lifesaver for the clients to keep requesting changes, or bug fixes for special cases in the field of software development. And yes, sometimes one is tempted to say a bad word to the client and throw the work, but one is feedback-bound. Then with the work of the fixed price client taking up more days and days. But if one says about hourly work in the interview, they say that don't want, or even they don't respond anymore the messages. Indeed some clients post the proposal as hourly presumably only to land freelancers, as one of the questions is the total amount.