Today there is an increasing number of freelancers and individuals who work from home. Freelancing and outsourcing is a win win situation for both the buyers and the providers. This type of job is flexible and ideal for people who cannot commute or for those who are looking for an additional income on the side. The negative side is that there are many clients who will try to scam you and who will eventually fail to pay.

There are endless reasons for which people refuse to pay. Some of them will put the blame on the quality of your work, some others will claim that you didn’t meet their deadlines, expectations or guidelines and some others will just do what they intended to do from the very beginning; have the job done without paying. If you are a freelancer you should be very careful how you are dealing with your buyers. There are ways to deal with the scammers, but you have to keep in mind that you might not be able to avoid all such unpleasant associations.

Many people tend to hire someone and claim later that things did not happen according to their agreement. This is why you, as a provider, need to keep a record of everything. Don’t think of it as not trusting people; it’s not really. You never know what kind of person you will meet and what kind of client you will do business with. Not everyone is reliable and dependable, although most of the people who work online and hire freelancers are conscientious and faithful people.

In any case you are supposed to save all correspondence and document everything, from the beginning to the end of your project. Make sure that you have all the guidelines, the due dates and the details of the agreement. If someone claims that you didn’t follow the rules, you can simply forward the original details. One thing you can do is to request an invoice, either sending it by email, or using one of the payment systems and venues, such as PayPal. Some of the freelancing websites offer their own dispute system, so make sure that you know how it works before you go for it.

If your client still doesn’t pay, you can file a complaint or dispute requesting a resolution from a third party; if applicable. If for instance you do that in PayPal and you are in a position to prove that you are right and deserve the payment, then PayPal might close your client’s account. This will not give you your money, but at least it’s some form of redress.

In many cases, when the amount of money due is comprehensive, you can go to claims court, especially if the client is in your country. Documentation is important, because this is how you prove your justice. Sometimes it may not be worth the expenses, but that depends on several factors. Last but not least, try to be a little proactive. When negotiating with a client, always check his background when available. Feedbacks from previous clients, any negative opinions or other details can prove really helpful to determine whether someone is dependable or not.