Escrow protects your deposit until the work is approved

Escrow is a neutral holding place where we put money aside until the project, or piece of the project, is done. The funds stay there until your freelancer fulfills their obligations and you say you are satisfied those obligations are met and release them.

On Upwork, you deposit the funds for fixed-price jobs into escrow (one contract, or milestone, at a time) and release them to your freelancer once you’ve received and reviewed the agreed upon work. The freelancer can see you are willing and able to pay as promised, while you know you don’t have to give them the money until you are satisfied with the work.

Your initial deposit at hiring can be for the full contract amount or the first milestone. You can then add and fund additional milestones as agreed with the freelancer throughout the contract. If you ever release less than the agreed milestone amount, the extra funds in escrow will roll forward to the next milestone. The funds stay in escrow until the agreed upon work is completed.

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