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Upwork Policy regarding mediation and arbitration is client supportive

I am new to upwork and had done 42 contracts so far and its my first dispute. 

The client has extended the requirements and making me to add extra features within the 180$ budget. I submitted him 4 multiple revisions regarding design and functionality. At the end he start demanding to be like a 1000$ scope with 180$. Asking me to implement 79 api's which will be almost 50 plus screens. Try to understand but didn't. I have no options except dispute. So i disputed the amount and upwork mediation team start handling it. I shocked when they offer me half 90$ and ask to take off the dispute. Otherwise for arbitration need to pay almost 290$ from each other. If you would not pay fee for arbitration then amount will be refunded to the client.

The total project cost is 180$. Why am i suppose to pay 290$ for arbitration.


Any kind of proof of work is meaningless. Client will always be the winner. Freelancer will always be sacrified in each and every state. Now i am in a state that client always say no to pay and asking me to do over work with same budget ,until i reached 1000$ scope.

For upwork mediation team its important to convince the client and push the freelancer to end the dispute. Otherwise payment will be given to the client at the end. 


No Merit policy. Nothing here.


To avoid a situation like this: Only accept hourly contracts.

I don't think so that its a perfect solution. Hourly contracts has also many dispute at different level.


Muhammad Tayyab A.,


There is no real payment protection for fixed price projects on Upwork. Escrow can be reversed/refunded for multiple reasons, and even months after the project and its related payments to you are complete those can also be reversed/refunded. On small projects, as you have pointed out, paying your $291 portion of the arbitration fee is not a useful option.


If your choice is a) to have done $180 worth of work for this client and refund $90 to him, or b) keep $180 and do $1,000 worth of work for him, your best bet is, in my opinion, a).


Just move on to the next client and put this behind you. If you only have such a problem with 1 out of every 42 clients on Upwork, that may just have to be one of your acceptable costs of doing business via Upwork.


Good luck! Maybe some day Upwork will provide freelancers about the project history of clients like this one. I doubt this is his first such action. Until then, we're on our own.

Thanks Will. I agreed somehow with your thoughts and experience.

But the thing is that i can move forward. But cannot forget the behaviour of client. Its behaviour is challanging me that i am the winner of this dispute and i can do whatever i want. He is too much arrogant and bad behave i faced with him. He gives me tough time in the multiple revisions and at the end i have no choice instead to dispute. But dispute is against me.


Now if i move forward. I always feel insecure that amount is not secure in escrow. Client may end it any time and get it back. I know that this will not happened all time. But level of satisfaction lose up now.


Muhammad Tayyab A.,


The best you can do is put this behind you. There are scams galore in all corners of the Internet; Upwork is no exception.


But Preston is right - there is real payment protection on hourly projects on Upwork. The amount of protection per client is $2,500, but I'd guess that covers the vast majority of projects on Upwork. 


But dishonest clients know this, too, so I think it's unlikely an actively fraudulent client uses hourly contracts. That doesn't mean the, um, certain type of "inexperienced" new clients don't try to get by with getting their projects done for far less than they've agreed they will pay to a freelancer. I have had it happen twice in recent months. But Upwork offers real protection for the freelancer in getting paid in full and on time when dealing with these clowns (as long as the TimeTracker app is used correctly, etc.).


But, still, if you only have such a problem with 1 out of every 42 clients on Upwork I expect if you tried to work with anonymous clients off the Upwork platform your percentage of dishonest clients would be higher. Maybe even much higher.


Hi to all the community, I'm Top Rated, I use to do a good job to my clients, Upwork is the only job I have, so my life depends of it, to maintain my quality, etc. Today a client hired me and after I did all the drawings, she said there was a misunderstood and she wants her money back (now in scrow), she send me only one floor plan to model it in 3D, and I did, I send her images and a video (the video I sent was a plus, a gift from me), I don't know what to do. I appreciatte your help, thanks.

Hi Laura, 

I checked your account but could not identify the contract you are referring to. Could you please share the Contract ID for this contract so that our team can assist you further?

~ Avery
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