Enterprise clients can choose to purchase worker classification services through Upwork. In these cases you’ll see the contract’s client name contains “Upwork Talent Group” and you’ll be asked to complete a series of required tasks before accepting the contract.
If the contract’s client name does not contain “Upwork Talent Group,” please read these FAQs instead.
You’ll see a list of required tasks on the offer page. The information you provide with these tasks is needed to confirm whether you qualify as an independent contractor for the particular engagement. Tasks can include accepting customized agreements or completing background checks. These tasks are outlined on the offer page and can differ by Upwork Enterprise client and by project engagement.
Companies must determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee in order to comply with tax and other legal requirements.
Once you’ve completed these tasks, you’re added to that Upwork Enterprise client’s Talent Cloud® network. This means you’ll be visible to all hiring managers at the company, and can be more easily selected by them.
Clients can choose to purchase worker classification services through Upwork to ensure that independent contractors are working with them in a way that complies with applicable legal requirements. In these cases, your contract will be with UTG, a company affiliated with Upwork, instead of directly with the client.
If you see that your contract contains the name “UTG”, you will still work directly with the client, but administrative details of your engagement will be handled by UTG.
UTG must determine whether you qualify as an independent contractor (also known as worker classification). To make this determination, the Upwork compliance team reviews details regarding the project and your freelance business. Upwork may ask you to submit additional information to confirm that you’re self-employed or otherwise running your own business—especially if you’re new to using Upwork or located in a country or state with more stringent legal standards.
According to our User Agreement, the Upwork website is offered for business purposes only, and all users must have their own business unless they use Upwork solely as an employee working for a registered Agency. A freelancer can be considered a business as a self-employed individual (a sole proprietor) or as a business entity. More information.
Part of determining whether you qualify as an independent contractor is to show that you have a business. If you’ve already worked with or marketed your services to many different clients on Upwork, we may have enough information that shows that you’re running an independent business. If not, you’ll be required to provide documentation and/or answer a questionnaire about your business’ overall activities—both on and off the Upwork platform.
Below is a list of qualifying documents that can show business status. You can black out any information you consider to be private. Upwork will follow up if more information is needed.
If requested, you’ll need to provide any two of these documents:
- Business license
- Proof of status as a LLC, corporation, private limited company or other entity, such as articles of organization, certificate of incorporation, or online registration summary
- Registration with any tax, social security or other agency as an independent contractor, sole trader, private entrepreneur, or other self-employed individual
- Proof of registration of a business name (dba), such as a fictitious business name statement, registration of trade name, or certificate of assumed name
- Form or notice showing your U.S. Employer Identification Number (EIN) or international business tax number
- Business marketing materials, such as your website, business card, or advertisements
- Profile advertising services online, such as on LinkedIn, Yelp, Guru, Fiverr, PeoplePerHour, or any other marketplace
- Certificate of Insurance or other proof of liability insurance
- Proof that you have insurance for unemployment, workers’ compensation or disability
- Invoices to other clients within last 12 months
- Schedule C from U.S. Form 1040 (Report of Profit or Loss from Business) or international equivalent
- Business tax return
- Professional certification or license
- Commercial office space lease
- Coworking space membership or lease
- Proof of hiring employees or freelancers for your business
- Other document showing you’re self-employed or otherwise running your own business
I feel uncomfortable sharing some of this information. Can I black out certain items?
What if I don’t qualify as an independent contractor?
If you don’t have your own freelance business, in some instances you may be able to still work with the Upwork Enterprise client, but you will need to be employed by Upwork’s third-party staffing provider. If this is the case, a representative from the staffing provider will contact you directly with specific instructions for their onboarding process. For resources on growing your business, check out the Upwork Blog and the Business Resources page.
I’ve completed all my tasks, but I still can’t accept the agreement. What do I do?
Upwork’s compliance team must review all tasks completed by you and by the Upwork Enterprise client. After all tasks are completed, it generally takes at least 2 business days to review and confirm the project, at which time you will receive an email notification with information to accept the offer.
Who can I contact for help if I have more questions about this process?
You can email [email protected] if you have any questions about Upwork Enterprise onboarding tasks or classification services.