Freelancer.com Review 2012
I hope you found this post by typing “Freelancer.com Scam” into Google! I want you to know that you’re not alone. I think Freelancer.com is the biggest scam/fraudulent website I have ever dealt with. The freelancers on the website are semi okay, but the owners of Freelancer.com act like crooks. I have no idea how that website is still in business.
Here’s a quick story of what happened to me. I signed up for a Freelancer.com account, posted my first job, got about 11 bids (10 of those bids were clearly scam automated responses) but 1 guy was cool!
So I hired the cool guy, but I had to make a deposit into the Freelancer account to get things going.
The minimum deposit for the job was $30, and it’s supposed to go into an alleged “Escrow” account. The money is to be held there until the hired freelancer completes the job. First off, Freelancer.com charges you an extra $1.01 for a processing fee, so I ended up paying $31.01..not a big deal.
About a week later, I get an email from Freelancer.com saying that my account has a negative balance for the job posted. Turns out these scam artist have a hidden fee of $3 for every job that you post. So my $30 deposit was now $27!
I find that strange because they said I could post my first job for FREE..which I did! But as soon as I made a deposit, I guess they decided it wasn’t free anymore and stole an extra $3…eh still not a big deal.
Anyways, almost 2 months past and the Freelancer that I hired never completed the job. (He said he could complete the job in 4 days, so he had more than enough time! I was patient right?) The Freelancer I hired eventually just cancelled the job which means I should be able to get my deposit back..right? After all, the money is in Escrow.. allegedly.
Next I had the option to have the money sent directly to my Bank or to Paypal. I choose the “Bank” option and got an error that says something like, “Sorry.. unavailable in your country (USA)..India only!” Hah..what the heck?!
So I choose the Paypal option and guess what…ANOTHER FEE! Now these scam artist want to charge me another $2.00 to withdraw MY MONEY even though no services were provided. Ehh..whatever not a big deal I guess, right? Next I read the fine print, and the minimum amount needed to withdraw your money is $30! Okay…that’s when I realized that Freelancer.com might be a scam and/or shady website!
They charge you to deposit money, they charge you to post a job, and now they’re charging me again to withdraw my money?! Okay, now I only have $27 in my Freelancer.com account, so they expect me to deposit another $3 + fees to meet the $30 minimum withdraw requirements? I think that’s a scam!
SCAM SCAM SCAM
I think Freelancer.com makes money by charging people excessive fees and flat out stealing peoples money. Before I wrote this article, I searched “Freelancer.com scam” on Google and read how Freelancer.com wasn’t even paying there freelancers after the jobs were complete.
Freelancer.com was asking people to fax over Passports, Birth Certificates, SSN’s, or pictures of themselves in the mirror holding a sign with there username and password on a piece of paper. That’s crazy and unprofessional.
So here’s how I think Freelancer.com works in a nutshell:
- Employers deposit money into Freelancer.com’s shady escrow account.
- After the jobs are complete, Freelancer.com makes it extremely difficult for the workers to collect there payments.
- If the employer requires refund, Freelancer.com figures out a way to eat up as much of your money as they can! If they’re feeling extra scammy, they’ll just suspend your account, keep all your money, and release it when they feel like it.
By the way, don’t even waste your time contacting there customer service departments! Freelancer.com doesn’t even have a phone number, and the “online chat” customer service feature is the worst I’ve ever experienced. I felt as if I was chatting with 10yr olds, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I was!
They’re a HUGE company right? What type of REAL company doesn’t have a phone number? Customer service is non existent now-a-days, and companies like this will not last very long.
So whats the lesson for today?
- Avoid Freelancer.com like the Plague! If you’re looking to outsource some work, I recommend using “Elance.com“
- Customer Service is KING! Treat your customers good and your business will flourish. Treat your customers badly, and someone just might write and SEO optimized article about you that shows up on the first page of Google
They finally gave me my money back (1 week later) after I emailed 6 different people, raised hell, and wrote this article about them. Even though they gave me a refund, I still don’t recommend this website.
The customer service sucks, and I wasted at-least 2 hours of my time going back and forth with them. Obviously $30 isn’t that much money to fight over, but it’s still my money so whatever. Hah!
Below you’ll find another article that contains useful links and emails where you can complain against Freelancer.com:
Update #2 (October 2012)
“Stealing Providers Money”
Yes its true, My id is imaginativegfx on freelancer.com. Please check my profile I’m a very old user of this site, More than 75 reviews, 5 star rating and won 17 contest, but I have to say that they are stealing designers money. This is to aware all provider about freelancer.com fraudulent behavior.
I won few contests on freelancer.com recently http://www.freelancer.com/contest/contest.php?project_id=6930 client paid me but, freelancer.com not allowed me to withdraw the fund to my bank saying that client’s details are not verified.
My question is why don’t freelancer.com verify these details before any one posting the job. Once someone posted a job and I worked on it and now I’m unpaid for done work. Is not it cheating.
2nd one - https://www.freelancer.com/contest/contest.php?project_id=9519
I participated in this job after checking that client details are verified. His email, profile and payment, all are verified. I feel that I will get money for this contest. I won and client paid me. I withdraw some money into my bank account. Now Freelancer.com Reversed All Prize Awarded and my account is showing negative balance. Now suspended.
They also closed his account so that I can’t communicate with him and deleted the contest to end all possibilities to communication with him.
I honestly worked on contest and need money for done work. If a client is fraud then Freelancer.com is responsible for this. I will not pay for negative balance. Instead I will love to leave the freelancer.com and soon you all will realize that this kind of behavior by Freelancer.com will lead to the closing of this website.
Update #3 (November 2012)
Freelancer.com complained to my hosting company to try to get me to take down my entire website. Isn’t that crazy?! Hah! They accused me off violating the copyright and trademarks of Freelancer.com, in addition to defaming the company. Wow.
The only trademark I might have infringed on was their logo. I had their logo within my blog post (even though it was just a screenshot from their website) so I removed it. That’s the only thing I can think of, and my hosting company is fine with that.
The people at Freelancer.com are crazy…seriously! If I end up dead or something, then you know what happened because they are seriously trying to cover up something.
I’m 50/50 about deleting this blog post because I have better things to do than waste time with these clowns. They aren’t even worth the back-link they get every time I type “freelancer.com”
They even want me to remove all the comments on this blog post. Hah why? Its an open forum, people can say whatever they want (including all the customer service reps from Freelancer.com that have left comments.) Plus I highly doubt anybody is lying in the comments because everybody is saying the same exact thing.