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Newbie question

New to Upwork and remote work in general, just got hired for my very first proposal submitted! They sent a PDF to read of a project to pick from and I noticed there is an insurance fee that I have to pay that varies in price based on the size of the job. Is this a normal thing to pay money? They say it is refunded when the job is complete. 

Community Member

It's a scam. 


Hi Andrea,


Thank you for your message. Please note that we do not encourage freelancers to send any payment to the clients as this may lead to possible fraud. I will forward your report to the relevant team to review and take appropriate action. 


Please check out this post for more tips on how to avoid questionable jobs and please use the flag option found on each job post or message anytime you’d like to report a violation.


Thank you,



Thank you for your quick response, I have flagged the job under my proposal
and also blocked communication with them.
Community Member

Hi Andrea,

Do not send them money. This is a scam.

You should never pay a client before you start working. The money they're asking for won't be refunded because you're not likely to hear from them again (except maybe if they try to ask you for more money for banking fees when they can't seem to pay you).

I hope you didn't contact them via an outside email, Telegram or WhatsApp. It's a violation of the terms of service to take conversations with clients off the board before you have a contract. Afterwards, you can communicate using any channel you like.

Wes, one of the freelancers who uses Upwork wrote this article on red flags for scams. It's a good thing to read before you start taking contracts.

Also, it's good to get to know the terms of service and about the different types of contracts (fixed-rate and hourly) and the payment protections offered with each of these. You can look up different topics that have been posted by typing keywords into the search box at the top of the page.

Here are a bunch of links to articles that might be good to review:

SCAM : STOP buying PUBG, CRYPTO, NFT, etc… on... - Upwork Community

Get Started – Upwork Customer Service & Support | Upwork Help

Upwork Customer Service & Support | Upwork Help

Upwork Legal Center

List of red flags for scams - Upwork Community

Freelancing 101 on Upwork - Upwork Community

Report Suspicious User Activity – Upwork Customer Service & Support | Upwork Help

Understanding and Using Connects – Upwork Customer Service & Support | Upwork Help

Tips to Avoid Questionable Jobs - Upwork Community

Thank you so much for your feedback and they have been flagged and

No problem. It wasn't always like this, but in the last two months or so, there's been a deluge of scam spam.

I'm just glad you found the forum and asked your questions.

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