I completed my first project with upwork. I proposed a bid for 200 dollars and was infromed that I would be charged upwork fees of 20 dollars so the expected amount should be 180 dollars. The client had split the work as milestones and paid it in two installments. I was charged the upwork fee for both installments. Isnt it unfair that I am being charged twice for the same project. So for a project of 200 Dollars I have only received around 150 dollars. Isnt 50 dollars too much to be paid as fees. On top of this I am being charged vat. Could you please explain this?
If this is a new client, then Upwork's fee is 20%.
If you earned 200 dollars, then the fee would be $40, which means you would receive $160 out of the $200.
You said that you have received "around $150 dollars."
That is the correct amount that you should have received.
re: "Isn't 50 dollars too much to be paid as fees?"
It is not too much.
Keep in mind that you pay 20% only for the first $500 that you earn with any given cilent. After that, the fee is only 10%. After you earn $10,000, the fee is only 5%.
But ultimately this is a personal decision that you make for yourself:
If you believe that Upwork's fees are too high, you are not required to pay those fees. There are other freelance work platforms which have different fee structures, and there are other ways to find freelance clients, and there are certainly other types of work that you can do. Nobody is required to use Upwork. Thus: Nobody is required to pay Upwork fees.
re: "On top of this I am being charged vat. Could you please explain this?"
Upwork is not responsible for VAT. The government where you live is responsible for VAT.
(Personally, I do NOT pay VAT.)
You have the right to vote for representatives and/or parties who advocate for the repeal of VAT.
Keep in mind, that if some of your neighbors looked at some of the government benefits provided where you live, and then looked at a place without VAT which doesn't provide those same benefits... some of them would say "Hmm... Let's keep VAT" and others would say "Yeah, VAT is totally not worth it."
But, like I said, that is totally not an Upwork topic.
I would like to clarify that you will be charged 20% fee on each payment until you have earned $500 with your client. Once you have earned more than $500, the fee will be lowered to 10%.
To learn more about our freelancer service fees, check out this Help Article.
I would also like to confirm that you're charged with VAT as well. Upwork charges the country-specific Value Added Tax (VAT) to freelancers and agencies in the European Union (EU), unless you provide a valid VAT number. VAT will be assessed on services provided by us, not on services you provide your clients. To learn more about VAT check out this Help Article. Thank you.