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Community Member

Upwork took MORE than 20% of my fee



I recently started on Upwork and my first gig was $10 (so I was supposed to get $8).


Does ANYONE know why they took MORE than 20%?? I saw that they ACTUALLY take 23%, and not 20 - but if this is always the case, why on earth would they advertise just 20%? For this amount it doesn't matter, but I'm worried about future, larger projects on here. 

Community Member

Hi, Upwork charges the freelancer service fees from the freelancer. It has has both PROS and CONS but by paying the fees they ensure that you get paid for the work done for the client. You can refer following links to know more details on service fees -



Community Member

Upwork takes 20% fee, + 1% services fee+ $1 amount withdrawal fee.

It comes to 21% deductions + $1.


Jyoti S wrote:

Upwork takes 20% fee, + 1% services fee+ $1 amount withdrawal fee.

It comes to 21% deductions + $1.


I am unaware of this fee, what do you mean?

Community Member

They advertise 20% (10%/5%) because they can't take the VAT in all 180 countries into account, or if the freelancer has a VAT number, paying no VAT on the service fee. 

It would be clearer is they put this into the forms: xxUpwork Service Fee + VAT where applicable.

Community Member

Hi Jessica,

Upwork charges 20% as fee, additional taxes based on the country you're in and additional $1 per withdrawal. Their service fee however is just 20%. If you're worried about larger jobs, don't be as Upwork charges different fees for larger jobs. Here a snippet from their article:

As a freelancer, you’ll pay a sliding fee based on your total lifetime billings with a client. Because we want to give you the flexibility to change contract types as you work together, we count all your contracts with a client –– whether hourly, fixed-price, or a Project Catalog project. (There are a few exceptions, see here).

Here’s how it works:

  • $0-$500 in earnings from a client: 20% service fee applied to earnings
  • $500.01-$10,000 in earnings from a client: 10% service fee
  • $10,000.01 or more in earnings from a client: 5% service fee

You can read more about it here - https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211062538-Freelancer-Service-Fees
Hope this helps!

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