I have a potential client asking me to be his paypal manager. He said they currently live in China but they want to keep their US paypal account but paypal will not allow it. He said he would like to add me as a manager but I must supply paypal with a copy of a utility bill and photo ID. Is this even legal? For some reason i am reluctant.
Doesn't sound legit. Normally all you need to do it give them your PayPal email address to receive funds.- which is against Upwork's policy anyway. And asking for a photo ID or utility bill from you is irrelevant- completely unnecessary to get hired for a job. I would be cautious.
re: "Is this even legal?"
What do you mean by this question?
Is doing this a violation of PayPal policies?
Only PayPal would be able to tell you that definitively.
A PayPal expert could help answer the question.
Is it a violation of Upwork policies?
Probably not. Unless it is a violation of PayPal policies. Because Upwork has a rule in their ToS about not violating other websites' policies. And Upwork works closely with PayPal and suppports PayPal policies. So Upwork is not going to support any of its users violating PayPal policies. But if PayPal allows PayPal managers like the client wants to set up, then Upwork would not have a problem with it.
These are better ways to phrase your question... asking whether or not something violates ToS or a website's user agreement or policies.
It's better to reserve the word "legal" for when we are referring to something that violates an actual law in effect in a governmental jurisdiction, such as a city, state, or nation. It is unlikely that you live in a place that has an actual specific law preventing PayPal managers. So the answer to that version of the question ("is it legal") would probably be no.
Even if this particular practice is NOT "illegal" and does NOT violate the policies of PayPal or Upwork (it may or may not)... But even if it doesn't violate any rules... it still doesn't mean you should feel obligated to do it. And it still doesn't mean you don't need to be careful. Anybody asking you to do something like this could be up to no good. They may be a scammer. They may be trying to circumvent their own laws.
They may be trying to trick you or steal your identity information by asking for a utility bill and photo. THAT is pretty unusual. That right there is enough for me to leave it alone.
Asking for your utitility bill, and photo ID is an unusal request and one we recommend not meeting. I have not checked your account yet, but if you have your doubts, you may flag the client's job post, or report the client directly to the Customer Support Team so that the client's account can be reviewed.
I would like to recommend that you read up the Safety First! section of the resources we have compiled, and these tips for avoiding questionable jobs for more information on how you can work safely on Upwork.
Sounds to me like an attempt to circumvent some sort of PayPal regulation regarding Chinese funds. If so, it would also be a violation of the UW TOS. I wouldn't touch this one.