Casefile Clues

25 June 2012

Before You Hire Someone to Research

My advice (short for now):

If someone wants you to hire them to research for you and their website includes:
  • No physical address (not even a PO Box).
  • No real indication of their experience. A "we've researched at several courthouses and been the Family History Library once" does not count as an indication of experience.
  • Recommendations that are anonymous.
  • No real name of the researcher.
My physical address is not on my website--however, my name is and my address is contained on my Facebook pages and is on my Association of Professional Genealogists' profile. I'm not saying that a person has to be a member of APG to be a good researcher--this is just mentioned as my contact information is out there in a public place for people to find.

What I am saying is that I personally would not hire someone for whom I have no real name, no address, no good idea of experience, and vague references. If you want me to hire you, I need some specifics about what you can do, what experience you are, and how I can really contact you.

Do a little snooping before you hire someone. Anyone can make a web page that indicates they are a professional researcher.