I am a buyer on upwork.com seeking for someone to remotely access and upgrade my server.

There's a contractor who wanted to work without a contract. I'd sent him the offer but it was not accepted (I even paid for deposit). The contractor asked me to share him the server details, and he said he would only accept the offer once the job is complete. Thus, he didn't want to take the deposit.

Q: I'm not sure if I should trust him. Why would he do that? There's no guarantee I'll even pay anything without a contract...

3 Answers 3


This is a common scam on Upwork. Well, not a real scam, but here is the thing:

You CANNOT rate him before he finished the work. So if he is not sure he can finish the work, he will work on it, but without accepting the offer. So if you are unhappy, or he is not in the mood to finish the contract, you CANNOT DO ANYTHING about it. And if you are happy, he will accept the contract because he knows that you will give him good rating.

DO NOT work with such guys. You have no idea if this is not a real scammer who can ruin your server.

DO contact support and report such behavior. There guys are inventing new things every day so let Upwork deal with them, and you do not work without a contract.


I assume he wants to be paid outside of Upwork and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with a contract.

Upwork takes a nice chunk out of your earnings, and perhaps he wants to avoid it and will request payment outside of upwork when the job is done.

  • 2
    not true. read my answer.
    – Peter MV
    Jul 13, 2017 at 15:50
  • I get the impression you have first hand experience with this behavior on upwork, but that doesn't exclude other possibilities. Jul 13, 2017 at 20:02
  • Think like this: if you have history of freelancing site and good rates, are you really be so stupid to risk account ban? or you will think of a way to ensure that you get only good rating? I think the later is more realistic.
    – Peter MV
    Jul 14, 2017 at 8:04

I am a ("Top Rated") and 5* freelancer on Upwork, with a 100% rating for completed projects. I refuse any / all offers from Upwork clients who even hint @ inappropriately working outside the network, but I do report them.

Neither do I accept offers without a subsequent interview of the client so that I can be confident that we are a good fit. I occasionally do suggest that I submit a "free sample" or a preliminary draft prior to executing a contract. I simply have enough confidence in my work product to provide protection the client.

More importantly, I can also protect myself and maintain a sterling reputation for not only quality, but integrity as well. In the previous 12 months, I have invested less than 2 hours into projects that didn't come to fruit, while saving 100's of hours in unnecessary revisions or interim consultations.

The approach also allows me to avoid unreasonable, unqualified clients with whom collaborations become difficult or may have given me less than stellar feedback ... who originally felt the need to hire a writer and then become "experts" on the art and science, retroactively.

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