Ethics and Privacy
Any information about living people or sensitive matters, which are not already a matter of public record, would be kept confidential.
How it Works
We initially will discuss your goals and information you know and collected to date. We will include these goals in the client agreement that we will both sign. I will not duplicate your research, but I will have to check information you gathered to make sure it’s accurate. This is done in your best interests. First, as a result of this check, we should be able to avoid errors that will duplicate your costs, second, we’ll be able to identify what archives I will need to work with in order to obtain metrical records.
Why do you need to check results of my research?
Here is an example, I am being asked to find a birth record for Morris Ostroff from Russia. Morris is not the name your ancestor came to the USA under. I will need to find out what original (Hebrew) name Morris had at the time of immigration. Ostroff is not a typical Jewish surname, so I will have to check whether his original surname was Ostrovskiy or something else. Russia could’ve been any place in the Pale of Settlment. This may require 30 minutes or a couple hours of research depending on the time of immigration and how badly the names were misspelled and indexed.
My rate is $50 per hour. Initial nonrefundable payment of $300 that will cover 6 hours of research is required upfront for me to start working on a case. My only acceptable method of payment is PayPal. I can not accept personal checks or credit cards at this time. As the research progresses, I will be issuing invoices with a link to my PayPal account for payment. All expenses will be discussed in advance, so you will not be presented with unexpected charges.
It is impossible to predict in advance whether research will produce the desired results. Because I put in the time and effort, I have to charge for time spent on research, even if it draws a blank. However, I will always try to keep time spent on unproductive research to an absolute minimum. Rather than proceed, I will stop the work and report back to you to explain the problem and discuss future actions and possible outcomes.
Family history research is not for those who get easily shocked. If you are not prepared to uncover uncomfortable or embarrassing information about your ancestors, then it is best not to start researching them. As DNA testing becomes more popular nowadays, more secrets are uncovered, so try to be prepared. Our Code of Ethics requires us to “refrain from withholding, suppressing, or knowingly misquoting or misinterpreting sources or data,” so if we find such information when researching, we must report it to you.
All factual information in our research reports can be freely used but, under American law, copyright in the research report as a whole belongs to the author. We are happy for clients to share our reports privately, but do ask that you seek the author’s agreement if you wish to publish what we have written. Custom charts that we may provide are also copyrighted. Again, the facts included in the charts can be shared freely, but the look and design of the charts belong to us.
We ask this to protect our intellectual property, the way in which we have conducted our research, the discoveries we have made and how we have structured our analysis and arguments. Without copyright someone could pass off our work as their own and take credit that rightfully belongs to us. They could also benefit financially from our work by reselling it in printed or digital form.
Copyright protects our professional reputation. Without it, someone could publish our work in a truncated, altered or misleading form, while attributing it to us. Others might then judge us to be poor researchers on the basis of what we had supposedly written.
If you have any questions, please feel free to use contact form found in Contact Us section of the website. You can also email directly to email@example.com or call me at (551)246-0344. I am looking forward to working with you! Inna.