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patir
Member

upwork payment guarantee - a nice joke

alright, i have been keeping something to myself about a project i did 2/3 months back.

a client hired me for an hourly project, verified her (let's assume it was really a "she") payment method.

i started and worked worth $300+ in the first week. then came notification from upwork saying there is some issue with the client. when i asked her she said there was some issue with her ID/payment method which she hoped to get fixed soon. she said she already sent her verification doc. and she suggested me to work on the project under a "colleague"of her. Her "colleague" hired me for the same project and that project was suspended for the same reason as well. I didn't work much there since I was already suspicious.

please note that payment was verified/unverified for a week or so after that (it kept changing).

now my question is, what is the upwork payment guarantee for if not for such cases? if you are going to pay us only if you can get the money from the client, why call it payment guarantee at all?

i didn't raise any complaint on it because i realised she was a total fraud. she completely knew about the loopholes in upwork system and came to scam me and many others (i saw 3/4 more hires in the same week which somewhat raised my suspicion further).

ah, to top it, upwork went ahead and put a temporary hold on my financial transactions. i was yet to get a single penny from the client! it was resloved fast though. [thanks to the nice support team Heart

33 REPLIES 33
prestonhunter
Member

Upwork payment guarantee works fine. It has worked for me in the past, when Upwork paid me for hours worked, even though a client's payment method failed.

 

You yourself pointed out that there was something "suspicious" about this particular client, when she asked you to work for a "colleague" of hers... under "another" client account.

 

I appreciate and completely believe you when you indicate you are frustrated by what happened. I'm not sure that we're hearing the entire story here, though. There are certain conditions that hourly work must meet in order to qualify for Upwork's payment guarantee. Are we certain that all those conditions were met? Has Customer Support explained the reason why you were not paid for the hours that you worked?

100% satisfied.

Never explained.

Colleague hired me in the 2nd week I think.

Now, you tell me why I wasn't paid?

 


@sunaram p wrote:

Now, you tell me why I wasn't paid?


 Did you track your time with the tracker, had high activity levels and detailed work memos on all screenshots?

 

Are all screenshots clearly showing you working on the client's contract, no low activity, no screenshots without work memos, no manual time?


@petra_r wrote:

 


@sunaram p wrote:

Now, you tell me why I wasn't paid?


 Did you track your time with the tracker, had high activity levels and detailed work memos on all screenshots?

 

Are all screenshots clearly showing you working on the client's contract, no low activity, no screenshots without work memos, no manual time?


Activity level almost at 10 all the time. 

Everything as required. No manual time.

Now I am afraid to work on hourly projects from new clients.

versailles
Member

Sunaram, this page explains how the hourly protection works: https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211068288-Hourly-Protection-for-Freelancers

 

Here are some bullet points from this page:

 

To qualify for Upwork Hourly Protection a freelancer needs:

  • An hourly contract
  • A client with a verified billing method
  • An account in good standing
  • To log your hours with the Upwork Desktop App
  • To be visibly working on a contract-related activity in your Work Diary
  • To annotate your Work Diary with memos or activities labels that adequately describe the activity performed
  • To maintain adequate and fair activity levels
  • To stay within the contract's weekly limit

In the following cases, you, the freelancer do not qualify for payment protection:

  • Time segments in the Work Diary that don’t meet all of the qualification criteria above. For example, we exclude segments that are:
    • Added manually
    • Idle or empty
    • Over the weekly limit
    • Showing the freelancer engaged in non-work-related activity
    • Missing memos or have inadequately described memos
  • Payment for anything other than qualifying hours, including
    • Manual payments, including milestones, bonuses, and other one-time payments
    • Advanced recurring weekly payments not based on hours billed
  • Payments from clients who haven’t verified their billing method
  • Freelancers or contracts in violation of the Upwork Terms of Service
  • Instances in which you are aware of, or complicit in, another user's violation of the Upwork Terms of Service
  • Instances in which you are involved in fraudulent activities or abuse of the Upwork Hourly Protection program
-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   â€”William Ashbless

I should have mentioned that the very first thing I read in a freelancing site is the payment related rules/policies!

So, I am aware of all the necessary conditions.

Only reason I kept quiet was I knew upwork could never recover the money from the fraud. But that makes me ask the question, "why any guarantee" at all?

Someone who said "it has worked for me". I should tell you that it has worked for me too. That was an old client whose payment method failed for a week. But I am 100% sure it was recovered in 10 days of time before I could withdraw it. Since his payment method was active again.

The question is what to do with new clients with hourly projects? You are always at risk of losing the money you worked for in the first week. 


@sunaram p wrote:

I should have mentioned that the very first thing I read in a freelancing site is the payment related rules/policies!

 


Then you can answer your own questions. If you meet all the requirements, you're protected. If not, you're not protected.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   â€”William Ashbless


@Rene K wrote:

@sunaram p wrote:

I should have mentioned that the very first thing I read in a freelancing site is the payment related rules/policies!

 


Then you can answer your own questions. If you meet all the requirements, you're protected. If not, you're not protected.


 Yeah, where is my money then?


@sunaram p wrote:

The question is what to do with new clients with hourly projects? You are always at risk of losing the money you worked for in the first week. 


 I have logged over 10 000 hours.

 

I have been paid for every single minute.


@Petra R wrote:

 

 I have logged over 10 000 hours.

I have been paid for every single minute.


 Good for you. I just want to know about my money.


@sunaram p wrote:

@Petra R wrote:

 

 I have logged over 10 000 hours.

I have been paid for every single minute.


 Good for you. I just want to know about my money.


 There is no need to get snippy or snarky. If this sort of thing happens to you repeatedly, vet your clients more carefully. Working with a client you KNOW has been suspended on a duplicate account is beyond careless!

 

It is most likely that Upwork DID tell you why your hours didn't qualify.


@Petra R wrote:

@sunaram p wrote:

@Petra R wrote:

 

 I have logged over 10 000 hours.

I have been paid for every single minute.


 Good for you. I just want to know about my money.


 There is no need to get snippy or snarky. If this sort of thing happens to you repeatedly, vet your clients more carefully. Working with a client you KNOW has been suspended on a duplicate account is beyond careless!

 

It is most likely that Upwork DID tell you why your hours didn't qualify.


 It is always a good thing to actually read what the OP said. What do you mean I knew that the client had been suspended and I worked on a duplicate account? It was a fresh account.[ And a **bleep** new client.] Then she suggested that we move to a different account after getting suspended. I am not even talking about the work done for the other account. I am talking about the first week I worked for her when her payment method was verified.

Do not go assuming what upwork might have or might not have done. When I said they didn't, don't be over enthusiastic about what I may be lying to you. I know upwork has mods all over this place and they can easily find out the truth. You don't get to start dissing out judgment. 

Its like Tiffany said.

 

They don't come here for advice, they come here to be ratified.


@Reinier B wrote:

Its like Tiffany said.

 

They don't come here for advice, they come here to be ratified.


 Yeah. I'm right out of ratification tokens for the day. Pats on the back are in short supply, too. I might have 1 or 2 "There, There!" left over.....


@Reinier B wrote:

Its like Tiffany said.

 

They don't come here for advice, they come here to be ratified.


 i didn't post this for advice. i came here for opinion. mine, upwork and others.

i went ahead and searched the forum. many had the same issue. some got their money, others not.

i just have to pray to my atheist's god before i go with a new client for hourly projects.

sunaram - If you used Time Tracker correctly and entered memos for the screen shots it takes, then Upwork will pay you if there's something wrong with the clients account. They will only pay you for a certain number of hours. and only pay you up to the point when you got notified to stop working.

 

So, if this is the case, you need to contact customer support to find out why you haven't been paid yet by them.

patir
Member

This is related to my post here 

https://community.upwork.com/t5/Freelancers/upwork-payment-guarantee-a-nice-joke/td-p/327572

 

I have been told by customer support that I was not paid for my logged hours because the client used fraudulent method to pay for the work. So my payment guarantee was invalid because upwork had to reverse the fund.

Still my question remains, "So what?" Why call it payment guarantee if I am not paid for my legitimate logged hours?

 

Spoiler
Hello sunaram,

Thanks for waiting.

The Hourly Protection did not apply to your logged hours for this contract since there is a violation of policies. Please note that in cases of fraud, abuse or violation of the User Agreement, the Upwork Payment Guarantee shall be revoked and all monies due to the Contractor may be held and/or reclaimed. This needs to be done since we cannot guarantee the legitimacy of the source of the funds. That is why our team regularly reviews activity on Upwork to ensure a safe and trusted environment for the community.

Regards,
Anecieto
High Value Support | Upwork.com

I intentionally created a new post because I want people to know about the real nature of Payment Protection.

It looks like someone is trying to suppress the truth? Someone here afraid of people finding about it?

I think I experienced this before with one client.  After I got paid for my first milestone, "her" account encountered problems and "she" barely said a word about it.  Then came another potential client whose name rhymed with my original client's.  "She" was asking me about my work, presumably to engage me on the same work that I did with my former client.  The offer for the project was tempting.  When my original client came online, I asked her about it and she said nothing.  So I respected her silence and since I did not receive any confirmation that that was her account (I'm referring to the "second" client) I did not enter into a new contract with the second one.  I got full payment for the work.  I was not harmed in any way except that I lost the chance to work with the second client up to this day.

vladag
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Sunaram,

 

I'm sorry about the outcome of your contract with this client. I see our agent already advised you regarding your payment on your open ticket. Please continue the conversation with our team through your main ticket and refer to article 6.4 of the User Agreement and section 6.2 and 6.6 of the Hourly, Bonus, and Expense Payment Agreement with Escrow Instructions for more information. I understand your frustration but unfortunately we won't be able to discuss the details of the issue in the Community.

~ Vladimir
Upwork
novikovma
Member

That's an interesting story. So freelancer was made responsible for his client's fraud?


@Mikhail N wrote:

That's an interesting story. So freelancer was made responsible for his client's fraud?


 Yeah, but don't tell anyone. Upwork seems like they don't want anyone to know about it! Man Tongue

In my working history on Upwork/oDesk, i had multiple situations when i worked with sneaky and probably intentionally fraudlent clients, so payment guarantee has invoked multiple times for me. I was always paid in full. So i tend to trust the system (having said that, i barely work hourly now anyway)


@Mikhail N wrote:

That's an interesting story. So freelancer was made responsible for his client's fraud?


 Seems unlikely, what with the frequent reports of Upwork honoring payment protection when client payment methods failed. 

 

More likely, there was some aspect of the requirements not met and the freelancer either doesn't understand or disagrees.


@Tiffany S wrote:

@Mikhail N wrote:

That's an interesting story. So freelancer was made responsible for his client's fraud?


 Seems unlikely, what with the frequent reports of Upwork honoring payment protection when client payment methods failed. 

 

More likely, there was some aspect of the requirements not met and the freelancer either doesn't understand or disagrees.


 Look at the reply from customer service below **Edited for Community Guidelines**

Hi Sunaram,

 

Please, refrain from sharing personal communication and details about your case in the public Community. I encourage you to refer to Vladimir's post earlier on this thread.

 

Thank you.

~ Valeria
Upwork
sam-sly
Member

I've seen other freelancers report that they weren't paid when they did everything right (as far as they said), but the client was fraudulent (i.e. using a stolen credit card, etc.).

 

I guess the takeaway lesson from the OP's post is to pay attention to Upwork's warning when there is an issue with a contract. I think the OP's mistake was to work with this "client" on another contract. Upwork staff can't/won't tell us the problem. It might be something as minor as an expired card or it might be the client wasn't authorized to use someone else's card. The method may have verified at first, until; the real owner of the card saw charges. 

 

It sounds like Upwork did advise the OP to stop working with that client until further notice. When the issue is an expired card, the client fixes it and you can continue on the same contract. It sounds like it was something more serious in this case.  


@Samantha S wrote:

I've seen other freelancers report that they weren't paid when they did everything right (as far as they said), but the client was fraudulent (i.e. using a stolen credit card, etc.).

 

I guess the takeaway lesson from the OP's post is to pay attention to Upwork's warning when there is an issue with a contract. I think the OP's mistake was to work with this "client" on another contract. Upwork staff can't/won't tell us the problem. It might be something as minor as an expired card or it might be the client wasn't authorized to use someone else's card. The method may have verified at first, until; the real owner of the card saw charges. 

 

It sounds like Upwork did advise the OP to stop working with that client until further notice. When the issue is an expired card, the client fixes it and you can continue on the same contract. It sounds like it was something more serious in this case.  


 I just assumed that the client is really having some issues with her id proof. So, I went ahead and tried to continue with her "colleague" which was supposed to be from the company "**Edited for Community Guidelines**"! Upwork should have verified about the company "**Edited for Community Guidelines**" which is supposed to be a huge tech blog. I wonder what their "activity monitoring" was doing at that time.

And I really hate the fact that they try to hide too many things from us. I didn't see anything objetctionable in sharing the CS reply. People here keeps passing on their judgments just because we can't show the truth here. It is extremely annoying.

I really hate my life choices now. There are alternatives to upwork, but I am not good enough for the better ones. Just stuck here for the foreseable future!


@Samantha S wrote:
It might be something as minor as an expired card

 Nope, cards expire at the end of a month, not the beginning, and the contract would have been put on hold before the card expired, so no hours could have been logged on any card that would have been expired by the time the hours would have been charged. In that case no protection would ever be necessary, as no hours can be logged when there will be no valid payment method on billing day.

patir
Member

Just wanted to let you all know that I got my payment after they determined that I am elligible for payment protection in my case after all.

Lesson learned: Contact support if something like this happens.

 


@sunaram p wrote:

Just wanted to let you all know that I got my payment after they determined that I am elligible for payment protection in my case after all.

Lesson learned: Contact support if something like this happens.


 That is GREAT news!!!

Really happy that Upwork came through for you!

I am also exactly facing the same situation and got first response as Sunaram P. I am very worried because I am a senior freelancer and followed the upwork payment system correctly, we don't trust the clients but upwork payment system. This is also written on the top of page

 

Because Upwork Payment Protection adds a level of security to payment processing for hourly and fixed-price projects, allowing clients and freelancers to collaborate on projects with *******PEACE OF MIND******.

 

Hatsoff Sunaram for your struggle of many days and providing right solution and guidence in my issue.

 

Thank you

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