Do you expect a client to pay for a design they don’t like?

Situation: a long time client (at this point I’ve done consistent work for them for about two years) just messaged me saying they do not want me to bill them for the last design I did because it was not what they wanted. However when explaining the project they said I could have creative freedom.

Is this a normal thing for clients to not pay for a project and then expect you to do it over? I get edits and things like that but expecting you to not bill them for what you already did and just starting over? Do you expect a client to not pay for a design they don’t like?


This sounds like an uncommon relationship.. or at least workflow.

In most situations, you’d present a design, if the client doesn’t like the design, you rework it. Striving to make the client happy. But it’s all billable. A contract should state as much.

Just because a client tells you not to bill them for something… that does not mean you don’t bill them. It’s not their choice what you charge for. However, a request like that would lead me to a discussion….

  • The project was assigned. I spent X hours creating the project you requested. That time could have been spent on other clients and other projects. Instead it was reserved to complete the project which you requested. If I work on a project I expect payment.
  • What don’t you like?
  • How can I edit this to better suit your needs?
  • I will strive to create something you can use, but this is a billable project.

All that being posted.. if it’s a long standing, great client and the project was minimal, only taking a couple hours or less… I may offer a considerable discount if they are unhappy. And in some instanced not invoice. However, I’ve never not invoiced because a client told me not to.

Source : Link , Question Author : Paula , Answer Author : Scott

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