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I just wanted to check regarding how the UK minimum wage works online with one of the project websites where buyers offer projects and freelancers bid for them. In this instance, both are based in the 'uk

I recently bid and was successful on a project where budget, timescale and objectives were agreed. I produced a good piece of work within the timescales and sent this off three weeks ago.

When 'I came to invoice, the buyer rejected the project and in essence has asked for additional work that if I undertook would end up meaning that 'I would be paid 87p per hour for a month, as opposed to the 75 pound per day agreed. I was wondering where the law stands on online work in the Uk regarding the minimum wage?

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National Minimum Wage applies mainly to employees with a contract of employment. It doesn't cover self employed people or contractors. So it's unlikely to help you at all I'm afraid. If you are self employed you are pretty much on your own negotiating what you will be paid.

 

If you think the buyer breached their contract with you then you could sue them in court. That might not be easy to do in practice though.

 

If you are curious to know how NMW works and who it covers there's info on GOV.UK here:

 

https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates

 

If after reading that (especially the definition of "worker") you think NMW might apply to you contact ACAS.

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Thankyou for your informative reply. I did suspect that would be the case. I guess it is a warning for the poor contractors who do work in good faith only to have the buyers relegate. Hopefully, in the future such freelance sites will protect freelances from this.

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That isn't ever going to happen. The contractual terms are for you to set and agree. The site is nothing but a "dating agency". If you disagree with the clients opinion as to whether you have completed the terms to the contractual level, that is, as it is in any circumstance, online or not, a matter for you to resolve or litigate. The only way to prevent a client from reneging is to tie the terms down in the contract you enter into.

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then you agree a sum for the work done or sue them for the original amount and see what they offer at mediation as they will surely want to go there rather than straight to a court hearing.

If they have truly rejected everything then that is that but what is your intellectual property in this project and how do you protect it? Is your work protected by other menas sucvh as password or it becomes a blocked file or similar. Unfortunately this behaviour is common in some business sectors, pubs get peopel to work trail shifts that turn into trial weeks and then trial months and then give the person the shove without paying. Funny how this seems to occur when a member of permanent staff is on leave or whatever

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I agree with you about "trial" periods - which are, of course, not lawful, just as unpaid internships are not. But this is something different. The OP is an self employed contractor, entering freely into a service contract. People entering into such contracts are running their own business, and need to be clear about the contractual relationship they enter into and how the output is going to be measured before they agree to anything.

 

I'm actually guessing, albeit I may be way off the mark, that the OP is either an inexperienced contractor, or operating on a low skill base. Purely on the basis that no contractor would get out of bed for £75 per day! I contract on occasions, as do many people I know, and I don't know anyone accepting rates of less than £400 per day - and that's the rock bottom charitable quote!!!

 

The OP would benefit from some business advice - there are an awful lot of free advice schemes available across the country. ask at the local Chamber of Commerce, or the Job Centre (who can point people in the right direction even if not unemployed). In the cities around here, I can name a dozen or so schemes that provide loads of such advice and help free of charge off the top of my head. And this isn't an area of expertise for me, so the information is out there.

 

If the OPs work is good, then they are short changing themselves massively. If it isn't, then a court may agree with the client. Either way, the OP needs a better "game" if they want too run a business.

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I used to freelance through sites like that when I was in college. obviously I don't know what site you are on but they are all pretty similar and usually have a way to contact the site itself about disputes, although I have never had to use it so I don't really know how it works. I stopped doing it in part due to clients demanding more and more for less and less and I found there were better ways to make money to get me through my studies. you should ask the site itself to take a look and see what the outcome of that is

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It is a problem, clients who have no intention of paying up using these sites to find peopel to do stuff and then deliberately have such a loose contract to avoid paying up.

The OP could tell us what the agreement was and we could advise on hwo to get ther money owed or get out of the contract. What has been handed over? Who owns the rights to it? if it is their IP then going to court may be productive.

Even governments are not beyond behaving like this, they sometimes put out supposed tenders for things like tourism or reseach and then ask for a short synposis of what you intend to do for the money, take those ideas and then not give you the job anyway.

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