How a freelancer stole our moneyThis is a tale that taught us a lesson and hopefully it can help you avoid a similar situation.

We hired a freelancer to build us a website, a complimentary sales funnel, and to run traffic to that funnel for our online business.

This freelancer was associated with another person that we had been already doing business with and we had no problems with the work the first person had delivered.

So when we found this freelancer and saw he was associated with the first person, we thought let’s get this freelancer to do our website etc., because this first person surely would not be associated with someone bad.

WRONG.

The contract was to put 50% down as an upfront payment and the remaining 50% was to be paid in installments as the work was being done.

I’m sure by now you can guess what happened.

The contract was signed and the first call to flesh out the specifics of what we needed was missed by the freelancer, accompanied by apologies and excuses.

Ok, we thought, give the guy the benefit of the doubt and give him another go.

Second call was missed. More apologies and excuses. All by email too, by the way, he definitely didn’t want to talk to us on the phone.

This went on for a week and the instalment payment was taken, even though we had not yet even had our first call.

More calls not returned, more emails not returned and another payment taken that was before the agreed date. All of these payments were on our American Express card.

We tried to cancel the contract for non delivery of services and the freelancer then sent us a picture of a file for a logo we had not asked for, saying this is what was going to be the header for our sales page. He also sent an email saying that because he had sent this through, the contract could not be cancelled for non-delivery, as he had delivered something.

Of course, we were not happy and asked for our money back, to which this guy said no.

It was then we were told that we could dispute the charges with American Express, as we were the holder of a gold card. This also applies to the Platinum card. We disputed the charges and left it in the hands of Amex.

We didn’t have to pay the charges while they were in dispute and we received an email from Amex about 10 days later saying that the freelancer had decided to return our money, so that American Express would allow him to keep offering their services.

You may already know that Amex has this service, but we didn’t until we were told about it and it is the only way that we got our money back.

So if you are a business owner, it is worthwhile considering holding an American Express card and using it for business purchases, so that you are covered if you do business with unscrupulous people, like we unfortunately did.

I hope this helps you avoid a situation like ours.

Dedicated to your Business Success,

Teriann