Need To Know

Research services - Need to know...

Please read the details below to ensure you are fully informed.

Use the contact form for initial contact and outline who you would like researched and what you have in mind. I will provide a free, no obligation assessment and be in touch to arrange a free consultation to outline how we can proceed. Once you decide you would like to proceed, I will set a start date and ask you to forward some family history documentation (if you have any – see next section), and an invoice for a deposit will be issued.

Ideally you would compile as much information on your family as you can, including documents, certificates and photos. Ask your relatives for this – it’s surprising what will come out of the woodwork! The more you provide, the better start I can get, and the less you will need to pay for. You can provide these in a variety of ways, but USB, Dropbox, email or hard copies are all acceptable, depending on your location.

Your fee covers my research, time, travel, consumables and regular reports. A private family tree will be compiled on Full control will revert to you at the completion of the project (a FREE Ancestry login will be required).

  • For major projects (Wattle, Banksia and Red Gum Packages), a USB with digitised documents and records is included. An allowance is included in the fee to cover the purchase of some certificates such as birth, death or marriage certificates (total allowance depends on package). The cost of extra certificates and documents in addition to the allocated allowance included in the fee will be discussed with you and invoiced accordingly. A research folder with printed documents and records, and a professionally printed colour ancestry chart are optional extras.
  • The pay-per-hour (Bottle Brush Package) does not include any certificates or documentation; these will be discussed with you, and an invoice issued if needed.

Extra vital records beyond the allocated allowance for major projects (Wattle, Banksia and Red Gum Packages), and all vital records for the pay-per-hour plan (Bottle Brush Package), are extra costs and will be invoiced after consultation with you. There may be other documents such as military records that will be an extra cost. No extra documentation will be purchased without your consent, and only after payment has been received from you.

A research folder with printed documents and records, and a professionally printed colour ancestry chart are optional extras, price of which will vary with the size of the project, and will be discussed with you.

Postage of the completed project, if necessary, is an additional cost. This will vary depending on the size of the completed project, and your location. 

I do not include any DNA testing or analysis of results in my services. You may undertake these personally, and at your own expense. Please note, they will not form part of the research project.

I specialise in Australian and UK research. How far back we can go depends on which part of the world your ancestors came from, and the availability and accessibility of information. Not all records have survived, and only a small portion have been digitised or made available to the public. The information you provide for the free assessment will allow me to gauge this.

Throughout the project you will receive regular progress reports, and if necessary, consultation regarding the purchase of extra certificates and documents. At the completion of the project you will receive a USB containing digitised copies of documents and certificates. If applicable, you will also receive a highly polished research report presented in a project folder, with copies of documents and certificates, and/or a professionally printed colour ancestry chart (optional extras for Wattle, Banksia and Red Gum Packages).  Access to your family tree on Ancestry will be fully handed over to you for your control.

Family history research can be hit and miss. Not everybody wants to be found, and not all records are available or accessible. You are paying for my research time and expenses. It is important you know that, despite the hours of research I have put in, there may be gaps in your tree. I will do my very best to deliver a complete and detailed project. You might also discover information that is not commonly known amongst your family members, and may not be warmly welcomed. It is not my right to dismiss any facts that are uncovered, but I will make a note to give you a heads up.

All amounts are in Australian dollars. Payments can be made by bank deposit, PayPal or by cheque. Work will begin once payment has been received.

  • Major projects (Wattle, Banksia and Red Gum Packages): A deposit of 10% is required. Full payment can be made up-front, or installments can be arranged and agreed upon prior to the start of the project. The full amount must be paid two (2) months prior to completion of the project.
  • Pay-per-hour projects (Bottle Brush Package): a $40 deposit is required, and further payments must be made regularly as agreed before further work is undertaken.

Cancellation by you prior to starting: If the deposit has been paid, this amount will be forfeited by you. See the ACCC for details.

Cancellation by you after the project has started: Upon starting the project, you agree to be responsible for the cost of the full project. No refunds of payments made will be given, and any monies outstanding must be paid. I reserve the right to withhold the research and documentation provided until payment has been finalised.

Cancellation by The Family Tree Detective: If, during the course of the project, I find that continued research is not possible, I will inform you immediately and the cost of the project will be amended accordingly.

Privacy Policy

The Family Tree Detective is committed to providing quality services to you and this policy outlines our ongoing obligations to you in respect of how we manage your Personal Information. We have adopted the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (the Privacy Act). The APPs govern the way in which we collect, use, disclose, store, secure and dispose of your Personal Information. A copy of the Australian Privacy Principles may be obtained from the website of The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner at

What is Personal Information and why do we collect it?

Personal Information is information or an opinion that identifies an individual. Examples of Personal Information we collect include: names, addresses, email addresses, phone and facsimile numbers. This Personal Information is obtained in many ways including interviews, correspondence, by telephone, VoIP, text messages, facsimile, by email, via our website, and from cookies. We don’t guarantee website links or policy of authorised third parties. We collect your Personal Information for the primary purpose of providing our services to you, and marketing. We may also use your Personal Information for secondary purposes closely related to the primary purpose, in circumstances where you would reasonably expect such use or disclosure. You may unsubscribe from our mailing/marketing lists at any time by contacting us in writing. When we collect Personal Information we will, where appropriate and where possible, explain to you why we are collecting the information and how we plan to use it.

Sensitive Information

Sensitive information is defined in the Privacy Act to include information or opinion about such things as an individual’s racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, membership of a political association, religious or philosophical beliefs, membership of a trade union or other professional body, criminal record or health information. Sensitive information will be used by us only:

For the primary purpose for which it was obtained

For a secondary purpose that is directly related to the primary purpose

With your consent; or where required or authorised by law.

Third Parties

Where reasonable and practicable to do so, we will collect your Personal Information only from you. However, in some circumstances we may be provided with information by third parties. In such a case we will take reasonable steps to ensure that you are made aware of the information provided to us by the third party.

Disclosure of Personal Information

Your Personal Information may be disclosed in a number of circumstances including the

Third parties where you consent to the use or disclosure; and

Where required or authorised by law.

Security of Personal Information

Your Personal Information is stored in a manner that reasonably protects it from misuse and
loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
When your Personal

Information is no longer needed for the purpose for which it was obtained, we will take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de-identify your Personal Information. However, most of the Personal Information is or will be stored in client files which will be kept by us for a minimum of 7 years.

Access to your Personal Information

You may access the Personal Information we hold about you and to update and/or correct it, subject to certain exceptions. If you wish to access your Personal Information, please contact us in writing. The Family Tree Detective will not charge any fee for your access request, but may charge an administrative fee for providing a copy of your Personal Information. In order to protect your Personal Information, we may require identification from you before releasing the requested information.

Maintaining the Quality of your Personal Information

It is important to us that your Personal Information is up to date. We will take reasonable steps to make sure that your Personal Information is accurate, complete and up to date.
If you find that the information we have is not up to date or is inaccurate, please advise us as soon as practicable so we can update our records and ensure we can continue to provide quality services to you.

Policy Updates

This Policy may change from time to time and is available on our website.

Privacy Policy Complaints and Enquiries

If you have any queries or complaints about our Privacy Policy please contact us at:


The Family Tree Detective