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Community Member

Missing payments (Upwork taking 30% rather than 20% with no explanation)

I've been actively using Upwork for about a year and am very happy that I recently surpassed the $10k earnings mark to get into the top 10%. Yay!
But I recently found that in the time since, while Upwork says that it takes 20% in fees, my payments are instead missing 30%.
I noticed the numbers seemed off last week (for work 2 weeks ago), but as my earnings from last week's work were $1,002 (an easy number to do the math on), it was extremely apparent in my latest payment that more than 20% was missing.
I received an email saying that I'd earned $1,002 last week. My pending earnings page then said I had around $800 in pending earnings - 20% so everything adds up.
But when my payments were actually made available last night, it suddenly shifted to $705 (from which another $2 was taken to transfer the money).
This never happened before when I did $25, $50, or even $150 contracts. Why am I suddenly missing 30% of my earnings instead of the 20%?
And why isn't there any additional line item explaining why that extra 10% is suddenly missing between pending and paid earnings?
Community Member

The fee is 20% of the first $500 you earn with each client; 10% of earnings from $501 to $10,000 with that client; 5% of earnings above $10k with that client. (With Enterprise clients, the fee is 10% from the start and no matter how much you earn with a given one.)


So once you get above $500 with a single client there's an additional 10% added on anything else up to $10k?



Fees you pay on earnings from Client A:

$1 - $500 = 20%

$501 - $10,000 = 10%

$10,001 and up = 5%


Let's say your first project with Client A pays $300. UW gets 20% of it and you net $240 (before any bank or transaction fees, VAT, etc.). Your second project with Client A also pays $300. UW gets 20% of $200 and 10% of $100 (because you hit the $500 threshold), and you net $250. Your third project with Client A pays $300. You are now in the $501-10k bracket with that client, so UW gets 10% of it and you net $270. That continues until you hit $10k with Client A, at which point UW's fee on your earnings from that client is reduced to 5% in perpetuity.


Community Member

It's fine to ask, but have you even bothered to look at the help before you came here?
I don't understand how it is possible to get to work through any portal without knowing, among other things, how payments work.

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