Write a Contract My former freelancer shall better remain nameless, I hired him for two jobs, due to my satisfaction with the first job, despite he had asked for a pay increase from USD 250 to 420 for the first job. (roughly USD 380 for him) I rehired him for a second time despite some payment issues with the first job, hoping that working together more would solve the problem. The second job however, was far from perfect. His hourly rate was USD 7.2 (which meant USD 8 for me). He said he could finish it in 25 hours, but ended up spending 36 hours instead. Most importantly, his final work was nothing I needed and listed on the formal contract page on oDesk. He gave me a simple page that took me minutes to understand and I was able to do it on my own in few hours. When I asked him why he couldn't satisfy the requirements I listed on the page, he started throwing me technical concepts and all kinds of reasons. Though he was true, but my requirements never changed, and therefore he clearly should not have taken the job. He never threatened me in any way but he was instructing me what feedback I should give him (for both jobs), I was too scared to dispute the transaction in fear of him logging into my site and do nasty things, which I saw some employers unfortunately encountered. I have gone over this already. After all, I was pretty satisfied with his first job, and secondly, the cost of oDesk freelancer is a fraction of my, and probably your home country's standards too. Moreover, chances are even hiring your natives; you would encounter similar problems time to time anyway. What I learned from this incident is that working with an online freelancer is not like working with someone in your real office. Cooperation should last only one to two times, otherwise they might start exploiting the trust you put forward to them. I will also only hire people on the basis of fixed price contracts. I am not here to victimize myself about my rip-off, just sharing my latest experience without using any emotional language. In fact, as business owners, we should never complain and be prepared to accept that spending time and money on dead ends and wrong people is an inevitable part of our own daedal. Hope you all businesses thrive, Henry.