​Terms & Conditions​

Yew Tree Genealogy strives to provide a fair, efficient and professional service.  These Terms & Conditions explain how we will provide our service, our obligations to you and your responsibilities.  Yew Tree Genealogy is owned and operated by Ruth Bertram, Qualified Genealogist.

Instructions and Communication

Yew Tree Genealogy shall communicate and take instructions from you in person, by post, e-mail, telephone or online video-conferencing.  We will keep you informed and provide an explanation of what action we are taking and why.

To  avoid unnecessary expense and duplication of effort, we need to obtain information from you about your ancestors.  You can help us by giving accurate information and providing copies of any documents you have. 

Our service is personal to our clients. If you pass details of our findings on to a third party, that person will not have any enforceable rights against Yew Tree Genealogy or any of its members or employees.  Yew Tree Genealogy retains the copyright of any reports or other form of works or of any part thereof commissioned or prepared on its own behalf or on behalf of any client.  Express prior consent is required for the publication of said works online or in any other medium.  


We offer a free initial consultation by telephone, e-mail or online video-conferencing (e.g. Zoom), when we obtain information about your family, identify what you are hoping to achieve and give an honest assessment about what we might be able to find out.  If you want to us to carry out research for you, we will agree and set out in writing the extent of the proposed research.

Fees for bespoke computer-based and on-site archival research, collation of data and preparation of reports are £25 per hour.  Travel time (except to and from Edinburgh and Glasgow) over one hour will be charged at £10 per hour.  Travel expenses (except to and from Edinburgh and Glasgow) and costs incurred for the purposes of your research (e.g. for necessary documents) will be reimbursed at cost.

Prior to commencing the agreed bespoke research, we will issue a quotation based upon the estimated time involved, travel and other charges.  We will ask for a deposit of £25.  The research work will be commenced once the deposit is paid.  On completion of the research work, we will outline what we have found.  You will be provided with an itemised invoice specifying the time spent and charges incurred.  We will provide you with our report on payment of our invoice.

Typically we will present the research findings electronically in the form of a fully sourced ancestral pdf report; a pedigree chart or charts and a GEDCOM file.  We also outline the research strategy applied and any suggestions for further research.  The GEDCOM file can be uploaded to most proprietary family tree software (e.g. Family Tree Maker; Roots Magic; Legacy, etc.) and online services (e.g. Ancestry; Find My Past; My Heritage, etc.) to form a family tree.  Presentation of the research findings in hard copy format and any other particular requirements such as an illustrated narrative report, bound copies and hand-drawn family trees suitable for framing can be provided.

We will keep you advised of fees and charges at agreed intervals.  In the event of fees and charges being less than the deposit, the balance will be reimbursed to you.

You may wish to agree with us a cap on fees and charges at any stage of the research.  On exhaustion of the agreed cap we will report to you on progress and advise as to the likely cost of pursuing research further.

Payment of deposit, fees or reimbursement of charges can be made by bank transfer or by PayPal.  Payment details will be provided.

The nature of genealogical research is that it can be difficult to estimate accurately the ultimate cost but we will do our best to keep you advised of likely fees and charges.  We reserve the right to issue and seek payment for interim invoices in the event that the initial invoice is insufficient to cover the costs involved in the work.

Classic and Premium Packages are available, as detailed on our Prices & Packages page.

Unexpected findings

The research carried out on your behalf may include unexpected results, for example it may demonstrate biological connection with relatives of whom you were unaware.  You should have in mind that this is a possibility and we will ask you tell us, in advance of us commencing research on your behalf, how you wish us to deal with such findings.   

Regulation and Standards

We are registered with the UK Information Commissioner's Office - Registration number ZA579545.  Ruth Bertram is a Qualified Genealogist and member of the UK Register of Qualified Genealogists.  Yew Tree Genealogy complies with the Professional Code of the UK Register of Qualified Genealogists.


Either you or Yew Tree Genealogy may terminate our professional services at any time by giving written notice (by e-mail or letter).  In the event that you choose to withdraw our instructions, we will send you an account showing all fees and charges incurred prior to termination and due to us.  Should you want any data, reports and/or documents sent to you or to another party, we reserve the right to charge you for production of such and/or preparation of a report.

You are entitled to change your mind about engaging us to carry out research on your behalf.  If you change your mind within 14 days we will advise you of the fees and charges reasonably incurred to the date of withdrawal of instructions and we will not undertake further work or incur further charges.  You will be responsible for paying the fees and charges incurred.  If you wish to terminate your agreement with Yew Tree Genealogy, please let us know as soon as possible.

Governing law

These terms and conditions shall be governed by and interpreted in accordance with Scots law and you agree that, in the event of any dispute, the matter will be dealt with only by the Scottish courts.

If you have any questions about these terms, please let us know and we will be happy to discuss them with you.