Terms & Conditions
By purchasing a product or service from Family History Gifts the Buyer and Gift Recipient are agreeing to the following Terms & Conditions:
We reserve the right to change these Terms & Conditions at any time and without notice according to the needs of the business.
Under the Contract of Sale, you are entitled to a Refund if:
You purchase a Family Tree, a Family History or a Complete Family Tree Package and no results can be found because:
- Not enough information has been supplied on the Application Form or during subsequent correspondence;
- Due to the nature of the family or families, research has halted permanently*;
In this circumstance a refund will be supplied minus all research expenses, travel expenses or any other expenses incurred during research for the sole benefit of research from the payment made by the customer at the onset of research.
*As deemed by Family History Gifts and its partners as “unresearchable”, having explored all possible avenues of research first.
3. You decide the product is no longer required within 14 days after the order has been made. The exception to this is if the research process has already begun within the 14 days cancellation period, in which case you are no longer entitled to cancel under 28.b of The Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013. See Contact of Sale below.
While we usually process refunds immediately (excluding bank and public holidays), it may take 10 business days for the money to be credited to your account.
Contract of Sale
Our Contract of Sale with you is deemed to have commenced when we receive your order and payment. We do not offer the right to cancel your order under Regulation 28.b (Part 3) of The Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 if the research process has already begun. The definition of the beginning of the research process is the day we receive your Application Form either electronically or by post, whether incomplete or complete.
The Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013:
Limits of application: circumstances excluding cancellation
28.—(1) This Part does not apply as regards the following—
b) the supply of goods that are made to the consumer’s specifications or are clearly personalised;
1.2 Once you have received your family history report, as a bespoke product, it is non-cancelable and non-refundable, however if the item was damaged during delivery:
Contact us within 7 days of delivery. You will be required to take a photo or photos of the damaged item on the day it was received for evidence of the damage. We will replace the folder and papers with the exception of government documents, if sufficient evidence has been provided that the item was damaged in transit.
If the item was damaged during transit, please do not alter it in any way. You are liable for any diminished value of the family history report from the handling of the product in a way that is contrary to normal usage e.g. removal of pages from the folder, putting unnecessary force on the folder binding.
1.3 “Time/Expenses” can be described as:
Time spent researching persons or person, subject or notion (i.e. researcher’s wage); travel expenses to and from record offices, or to and from information offices, or to and from all places relevant to research; waiting time for documents on order, i,e, British Library, National Archives, Register Offices etc.
General admin costs e.g. writing or telephoning on behalf of customer; acquiring copies of documents through photocopying or scanning; ordering microfilms relevant to research; ordering books or any other type of document relevant to research; hiring sub-contractors or agents in preference to travelling to far away geographic locations; sub-contractor or agents fees; analysing results; summing up results in a social and historical context; supplying photos and maps; writing and designing Report of Findings; print costs; postal costs.
Research can be paid for by using the shopping cart. Other research negotiated between Family History gifts and buyer can be paid for by digital invoice, which will be sent to customer’s email address. It is also possible to make a payment by direct transfer.
3. Your tree – controlling the Research
Customers can make applications for certain types of research to be undertaken, this must be completed by the end of the initial consultation period. When the consultation period has been completed all research methods, decisions and practices will be decided by us Family History Gifts and its partners. Under no circumstances will customers be allowed to:
a. Dictate research methods;
b. Replicate the same research at the same time as Family History Gifts and its partners.
If customers wish to guide their research using a professional to supply them with documents, then they require a Record Agent.
4. Duplicating Research
i/ Under no circumstances can Family History Gifts be held responsible for duplicating work previously undertaken by the customer or by an agent working on the customer’s behalf. It is the customer’s responsibility to make sure that they inform Family History Gifts of all previous research conducted about a subject, person or family along with a detailed sources checklist and all the relevant documents of proof with citations and references pertaining to previous research.
ii/ If the customer has information about their tree based on a/ oral history, b/ a one name study c/ antiquarian research d/ parish history, proof of linkage through documentation with citations must be supplied to avoid duplication of research. If no documentation with citations showing proof of linkage or a relevant reference list of previous research is forthcoming, Family History Gifts maintains the right to duplicate any research already undertaken and as such will deduct any duplicate research from the customers credit.
Updates are FREE, they are provided as part of our online family tree viewing area. You will be sent an update every time new information has been added to your tree, but you will not receive updates whilst we are working on your book report until the family tree is ready for dispatch. We do not communicate with you via any other facility other than the online family tree and we will only contact you by e-mail if we need further information about your tree. We are sorry, but we are unable to answer any general e-mails you send us about your research or enquiries about time frames whilst we are working on your tree.
6. Duration/Delivery Times
6.1 Under no circumstances can research duration times be accurately predicted. Family History Gifts and its partners will seek to deliver research in a timely fashion, however they cannot guarantee the delivery of any research or product for a specified date.
6.2 Our Delivery Times are provided as guidelines only and are not definite. Many of the documents we rely on to build and explore a family tree are processed and ordered from government departments and we are entirely reliant upon them to deliver promptly.
6.3 If delays occur we will do our best to inform customers, however customers should allow up to 21 days after the published delivery times for delivery of their research or document. Customers should note that ‘Normally sent or Usually sent within 5 working days’ does not mean ‘Definitely sent or guaranteed sent within 5 working days’, but that 5 working days is often the standard time.
6.4 Family History Gifts and its partners cannot be held responsible for not being able to supply research, famiily tree gifts and Complete Family Trees for special Gift Days such as Birthdays, Anniversaries, Christmas etc. or by dates specified by the customer. At the conclusion of research, it should be noted that a full genealogical report can take a month to compile and write. If this is too long, then you can pay your genealogist a full-time wage to complete it sooner for you.
6.5 Customers must not demand delivery of Complete Family Tree packages before the maximum stated Delivery Time of 12 months plus 21 days if the package has not been fully completed (including full report compilation and writing). Customers who demand early delivery will have their documents posted to them by First Class post without the full genealogical report and their contract with us will be terminated with immediate effect.
Under no circumstances can Family History Gifts and its partners guarantee results or new information at the completion of research. To undertake research Family History Gifts and its partners may seek to consult original records that are:
a. Missing or Incomplete;
b. Worn, damaged or illegible;
c. Inaccessible, not in the public domain;
d. Free from reference to the individual or subject being researched;
Due to these circumstances Family History Gifts and its partners cannot be held responsible for no results and you are not entitled to a refund or exchange of your research/document for another, if research has already been undertaken on your behalf.
Our research fees are not ‘result’ driven, that is a customer pays for time/expense rather than final results. See Time/Expenses above.
8. Accuracy of Information
We provide no warranty whatsoever regarding the accuracy of public information, including government compiled indexes, government held records and the content of public documents. We hold no responsibility for failure to find information in government indexes, records and documents because of administrative mistakes or errors by the appropriate government departments.
9. Replacing missing documents and reports
Family History Gifts and its partners will seek to replace documents and reports that have gone missing in the post and that have been insured by the customer upon payment of the appropriate fee as denoted in the Product Listing on the website Family History Gifts.
Family History Gifts and its partners cannot replace any documents and reports that have not been insured.
9.1 Quality and Condition of Original Documents
The documents provided with the report originate from government departments and record offices. The quality and condition of a document is due to the handling or storage of the document while it is in the possession of the government department or record office. Many of the original birth, marriage, and death certificates are delivered to Family History Gifts by the government department or record office folded in plain standard envelopes.
Under no circumstances can Family History Gifts be responsible for the quality and condition of documents included in the document folder.
10. Correcting Mistakes
Family History Gifts and its partners will cover all costs and correct any mistakes it has made when creating a Report of findings bound or unbound, including any typing or transcription errors.
10.1 Errors made by the customer when supplying information regarding names, dates and facts or any other type of information, written or verbal is the responsibility of the customer and changes or amendments made to the Report of findings bound or unbound are subject to an Administration Fee of £45.00 if corrected by us, Family History Gifts and its partners.
11. Family Tree Application Forms
Once you have submitted your Family Tree application form (inc. those bought as Gift Voucher Packs), you cannot change it. You must make sure all is correct before you submit your Application and that all your personal choices for Gift Days and Report types are final.
You cannot ask for a tree to be delivered for a certain date (anniversary, birthday, christmas etc.) once your Application has been submitted.
11. 1 Submitting Your Application Form
You are required to submit your Application Form within six months of purchase or before the expiry date, See Section 17.
12. Estimating Exact Research Costs
Applies to the following:
One Surname Family History Research
Two Surname Family History Research
Four Surname Family History Research
Family History Research to 1850
Irish Family History Research to 1850
It is not possible to provide an exact price for an exact result.
The fixed price of the above trees has been formulated to begin research in the early 20th century and end circa 1780, however for all families there are exceptions with regard to the ‘end’ date. Accurate estimates for research projects are very difficult to give because of the nature of research. Genealogy is the same as any other historical research and genealogists like historians have to employ a large variety of techniques to consult original sources and interpret them; anticipation of exactly which resources may be required, how many, and for how long is like trying to predict a future event and unfortunately those skills are not part of a genealogists training. If only it were, Mother Shipton’s DNA would be quite useful to us.
13. Capping limits
If you wish for us to extend your research as far as possible, you may wish to employ a capping limit to your research.
14. Payment Terms
If you have not paid in advance of your research, but have been granted a credit limit or have used a capping limit you will need to make sure that on receipt of an invoice you make a payment within 21 working days. If no payment is received within the Payment Period, non-payment proceedings will be initiated. (See Overdue Payments)
15. Overdue payments
If you fail to make a payment within 21 working days you will be charged at 8% interest of your total debt per day for three months; you will be provided with three reminders to enable you to make your payment, if after such time no payment is forthcoming Debt Collection and possibly legal proceedings will ensue.
Family History Gifts takes the use of unfair and illegal chargebacks seriously and will aggressively pursue the matter. If you make a chargeback before you contact us about a query, or you issue a demand for a refund verbally or in writing without having first discussed your order and how we can rectify any problems, you should consider that your claim may not be looked upon favourably by either PayPal or your credit card issuer.
Before issuing any Chargeback or a claim for a refund you should at first read all of our Terms and Conditions and the Terms of Service as per our product descriptions as your claim for a refund maybe illegal and in breach of these T&Cs. Remember that if you purchased a service from us, by doing so you had to agree to these Terms & Conditions.
17. Expiry Dates for Family History Research Packages and Gift Vouchers
All Family History Research Packages, Gift Experiences, and Gift vouchers are must be used by the expiry date. The expiry date is six months after the purchase date for:
- All Family History Research Packages
Application forms must be received by Family History Gifts by the expiry date on the gift voucher. Expired Family History Research Packages and Gift Vouchers for Family History Research Packages are non-refundable and any service bought that has expired cannot be supplied by Family History Gifts under any circumstances. If the customer/gift recipient requires a family tree after the expiration date, a 50 pound (GBP) admin fee (plus bank fee) is required and the voucher will be extended by 6 months. Application forms must be submitted within the extended 6 month period.
Why an expiry date of six months?
We offer a bespoke service that is unique to each customer. It includes meticulous research which is time-consuming, for that reason our genealogists can only research x number of trees at any one time. These are known as research slots. The research slots are planned for up to six months in advance as it is very difficult to plan them for up to twelve months or 24 months, hence the six month expiry date.
- If a research slot is missed by a customer, this is a potential loss of revenue for us as the slot could have been taken by another customer. As a result a £50 admin fee (plus bank fee) is charged if the tree is required after expiration date.
- There is also the question of cashflow. We spend money on document consultation on behalf of the customer. We deduct the subscription and government costs of acquiring documents for a family tree from the amount paid. In order to monitor these expenses and make sure there is enough money to research the family tree, the six month time frame is necessary.
- Also there may be increases to the costs of consulting documents and subscriptions during the life of a gift certificate. The consequence of providing a service with a long expiry date or after a certificate has expired, would mean we are effectively operating at a loss when providing the service.
Expiry Dates for Genealogy Gift Experiences
The expiry date for Genealogy Gift Experiences is 12 months from date of purchase. Gift recipients must book and complete their gift experience by the expiry date.
We will not fulfill a gift experience if the expiry date has expired under any circumstances.
17a. Availability of Gift Experiences
Experiences are subject to availability. To avoid disappointment gift recipients should book well in advance, allow 6-8 weeks. Remember that our peak period is October to December and should be avoided; if booking is left to coincide with this period, there may be no available days. In such a scenario your Gift Experience will be lost. We recommend booking as early as possible as you must have completed your gift experience before the expiry date printed on your Voucher. We strongly advise that you do not make any travel, accommodation or other arrangements until you have received confirmation of your booking.
Once a date has been booked for your Voucher your booking becomes the expiry date.
18. Refunds and Cancellations of Gift Experiences
i. If you wish to cancel an order for a Gift Experience you are required to do so within 14 days of purchase. To cancel within the 14 day period simply inform us in writing. Please allow 7 days for us to process your refund.
ii. After 14 days no refund will be available. Refunds are always made to the person who purchased the experience, and if originally purchased by credit card, the refund will be credited to the same card. If the card has expired you will need to request a refund in writing, quoting details of a new credit card. If you have a date specific or booked voucher then no refund or cancellation or other changes may be made.
iii. We cannot cancel or refund orders after 14 days or if you have booked a date for the gift experience within the 14 day period.
Rescheduling Your Gift Experience
i. After a booking has been made, we will endeavour to accommodate any request you make to reschedule your booking. Any request must be made up to 21 business days before your chosen date; requests made within 21 business days of your chosen date are subject to a £30 admin fee. In either scenario we cannot guarantee that any alternative requirements will be met.
ii. Should the gift recipient not be able to attend due to illness, we will waive the £30 admin fee on receipt of a medical certificate. All medical certificates should be sent directly to us at our postal address found on our contact us page. We cannot accept photocopies or scans.
In the event that no medical certificate is forthcoming, the £30 admin fee will still apply should the gift recipient wish to change their gift date.
“Event of Force Majeure” means an act of God including but not limited to rain, snow, fire, flood, earthquake, windstorm or other natural disaster; act or acts of terrorism; act of any sovereign including but not limited to war, invasion, act of foreign enemies, hostilities (whether war be declared or not), civil war, rebellion, revolution, insurrection, military or usurped power or confiscation, nationalisation, requisition, destruction or damage to property by or under the order of any government or public or local authority or imposition of government sanction embargo or similar action; law, judgment, order, decree, embargo, blockade, labour dispute including but not limited to strike, lockout or boycott; interruption or failure or breakdown of utility service including but not limited to electric power, gas, oil, water, internet, or telephone service; failure of the transportation (public or personal) of any personnel, road closures preventing access to locations used to provide performance of contract; indefinite or definite closure of record offices, societies, or any organisation used to provide a service and contract to our customers; failure of machinery supply or material required by Family History Gifts for its performance of the contract; breach of contract by any essential personnel; any other matter or cause beyond the control of Family History Gifts.
Family History Gifts, shall be entitled by notice to the Participant to suspend, cancel, reschedule the Gift Experience and the (performance of the agreement) if an Event of Force Majeure shall prevent Family History from offering the Gift Experience. Family History Gifts will commit to informing the Participant of notice to the Event of Force Majeure as soon as conveniently possible. Family History Gifts is not responsible for Participant’s failure to read notice.
LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
The maximum liability of Family History Gifts, where:
i. Family History Gifts, has had to suspend, cancel, reschedule the Gift Experience as a result of an Event of Force Majeure shall be limited to re-booking the Gift Experience for an alternative date if the Participant has more than 21 days left before the expiry date on their gift voucher.
ii. In the event of Force Majeure, should a Participant have less than 21 days left on the expiry date of their gift voucher or if the Event of Force Majeure should occur during the Experience, Family History Gifts shall be limited to providing an ‘Alternative Experience’ subject to available days within the 21 day period. Days available will be determined by the remaining unbooked days on our booking system; the opening hours of any alternative locations used for the performance of the Gift Experience under contract.
‘Alternative Experience’ means a Gift Experience that is different from the Gift Experience originally sold and advertised on the website in terms of: duration and/or content and/or location.
In the event of a default of this agreement, these terms and conditions of sale shall be governed by English law.