Code of Ethics and Conduct - Genealogical Research ServiceTo act in my client's best interests; and
To protect my client's privacy
To protect the consumer (client)
I will keep confidential any personal or genealogical
information given to me, unless I receive written consent to the contrary.
I will reveal to the consumer any personal or financial
interests that might compromise my professional obligations.
I will undertake paid research commissions only after a clear
agreement as to scope and fee.
I will, to the best of my abilities, address my research to
the issue raised by the consumer and report to that question.
I will seek from the consumer all prior information and
documentation related to the research and will not knowingly repeat the work, as billable hours, without
explanation as to good cause.
I will furnish only facts I can substantiate with adequate
documentation; and I will not withhold any data necessary for the consumer's purpose.
If the research question involves analysis of data in order to
establish a genealogical relationship or identity, I will report that the conclusions are based on the weight of
the available evidence and that absolute proof of genealogical relationships is usually not
If I cannot resolve a research problem within the limitations
of time or budget established by contract, I will explain the reasons why.
If other feasible avenues are available, I will suggest them;
but I will not misrepresent the possibilities of additional research.
I will return any advance payment that exceeds the hours and
I will not publish or circulate research or reports to which
the consumer has a proprietary right, without prior written consent of the consumer; I will observe these rights,
whether my report was made directly to the consumer or to an employer or agent.
To protect the public
I will not publish or publicize as fact anything I know to be
false, doubtful, or unproven; nor will I be a party, directly or indirectly, to such action by
I will identify my sources for all information and cite only
those I have personally used
I will quote sources precisely, avoiding any alterations that
I do not clearly identify as editorial interpretations.
I will present the purpose, practice, scope, and possibilities
of genealogical research within a realistic framework.
I will delineate my abilities, publications, and/or fees in a
true and realistic fashion.