If you're interested in applying for jobs that are restricted to US-based freelancers, you might wonder what it takes to qualify for these opportunities. This article outlines the steps and requirements for applying to US-only jobs on Upwork.
Verification and Location Proof
To be eligible, you must complete identity verification and provide proof of your location on Upwork. Acceptable documents for location verification include:
- Driver's License
- Bank Statement
- Lease Agreement
- Utility Bill
- Any other document showing both your name and the address listed on your profile
Additional Steps for US Location Verification
When you verify your location in the US, you declare yourself as a tax resident of the United States. Upwork will require you to fill out a W-9 form, where you'll need to input your Tax Identification Number (TIN), which could be an SSN, TIN, or EIN, depending on your entity type.
Is there a benefit in having US-only access?
Yes, there are several benefits to having access to US-only job listings:
Higher Pay Rates: Jobs restricted to U.S. freelancers often offer higher pay rates compared to global listings.
Reduced Competition: The pool of applicants is smaller, increasing your chances of being hired.
Client Preference: Some clients prefer U.S.-based freelancers due to cultural similarities, time zone alignment, or legal requirements.
Exclusive Opportunities: Certain jobs may be restricted to U.S. freelancers due to regulatory or compliance reasons, so you get access to opportunities that others can't apply for.
Increased Trust: U.S.-only tags could make you more appealing to clients, as it adds an extra layer of verification to your profile.
Having US-only access can make you more competitive and open up a broader range of job opportunities.
Options for Non-residents
The easiest way for non-residents to qualify is to use the EIN (Employer Identification Number) of their US-registered company.
Note: Filling out a W-9 form with incorrect information, such as zeros in place of your TIN, is considered fraudulent and could lead to legal issues.
Do You Need a US Company?
You don't need a US-based company if you have a valid SSN. However, if you don't have an SSN, you'll need to register a company in the US.
Can You Register a US Company While Abroad?
Yes, it's relatively easy and quick to register a C-corp or LLC in the United States, even if you're not physically present.
Is a Registered Business in the US Enough?
No, having a registered business in the US or UK is not sufficient for account verification. The account of the agency's owner must also be verified in the United States.
Can a US-based Business Manager Suffice?
To apply for US-only jobs via an agency, the following criteria must be met:
- The Business Manager is verified in the US
- The freelancer is verified in the US
- The agency's primary office location is verified in the US
- The agency owner is verified in the US
One useful tip for easier US or UK profile verification: it tends to be simpler if your profile has been previously verified in another country. Sometimes, Upwork may not even request additional verification for the new region.
While there are various ways to maneuver through location restrictions, this article focuses on the most straightforward, legal methods. Always ensure that you meet all the criteria before applying for US-only jobs with GigRadar.