Terms of SERVICE

Welcome to DNA Cold Cases! Thanks for using our products and services (“Services”). The Services are provided by DNA Cold Cases (“DNA Cold Cases”), located in Camp Hill, PA 17111, United States. These are the Terms of Use ("Terms") governing your use our Services. By using our Services, you are agreeing to these Terms. Please read them carefully. Our Services are very diverse, so sometimes additional terms or product requirements (including age requirements) may apply. Additional terms will be available with the relevant Services, and those additional terms become part of your agreement with us if you use those Services.

USING OUR SERVICES

You must follow all posted Policies. Please visit https://www.dnacoldcases.com/policy for further information on our Policies.

Do not misuse our Services. For example, do not interfere with our Services or try to access them using a method other than the interface and the instructions that we provide. You may not copy, reverse engineer, reverse assemble, otherwise attempt to discover the source code, distribute, transmit, display, perform, reproduce, publish, license, create derivative works from, transfer or sell any information, software, products or Services obtained through the Site or the Services. You may use our Services only as permitted by law, including applicable export and re-export control laws and regulations. We may suspend or stop providing our Services to you if you do not comply with our Terms or policies or if we are investigating suspected misconduct.

Using our Services does not give you ownership of any intellectual property rights in our Services or the content you access. You may not use content from our Services unless you obtain permission from its owner, or are otherwise permitted by law. These Terms do not grant you the right to use any branding or logos used in our Services. Do not remove, obscure, or alter any legal notices displayed in or along with our Services.

Our Services display some content that is not DNA Cold Cases’. This content is the sole responsibility of the entity that makes it available. We may review content to determine whether it is illegal or violates our policies, and we may remove or refuse to display content that we reasonably believe violates our policies or the law. But we make no representations as to our review of content and you should not rely upon our prior review.

In connection with your use of the Services, we may send you service announcements, administrative messages, and other information. You may opt out of some of those communications.

Some of our Services are available on mobile devices. Do not use such Services in a way that distracts you and prevents you from obeying traffic or safety laws.

RELEASE OF INFORMATION

By using the Services, you authorize our researcher(s) at dnacoldcases.com to release your name and information to the person(s) for whom this search is conducted and/or their appointed representatives. You also authorize to release your name and information to other reputable organizations for the purpose of increasing your chances for a match. You understand that unforeseen events could result in termination of “dnacoldcases.com” or the sharing of personal identifiable information.

PRIVATE INFORMATION

Any private information, like shared passwords to DNA third party accounts, or other family tree third-party companies (like Ancestry.com), are your sole responsibility. You may wish to change/update private information upon completion or termination of their search assistance.

YOUR CONTENT IN OUR SERVICES

Some of our Services allow you to upload, submit, store, send, or receive content. You retain ownership of any intellectual property rights that you hold in that content. In short, what belongs to you stays yours.

When you upload, submit, store, send or receive content to or through our Services, you give DNA Cold Cases (and those we work with) a worldwide license to use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works (such as those resulting from translations, adaptations or other changes we make so that your content works better with our Services), communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute such content. The rights you grant in this license are for the limited purpose of operating, promoting, and improving our Services, and to develop new ones. Some Services may offer you ways to access and remove content that has been provided to that Service. Also, in some of our Services, there are terms or settings that narrow the scope of our use of the content submitted in those Services. Make sure you have the necessary rights to grant us this license for any content that you submit to our Services.

Our automated systems analyze your content (including emails) to provide you personally relevant product features, such as customized search results. This analysis occurs as the content is sent, received, and when it is stored.

You can find more information about how DNA Cold Cases uses and stores content in the Privacy Policy or additional terms for particular Services. If you submit feedback or suggestions about our Services, we may use your feedback or suggestions without obligation to you.

DATA UPDATES

When a Service requires or includes downloadable data, this data may update automatically on your device once a new version or feature is available. Some Services may let you adjust your automatic data settings.

LICENSE

DNA Cold Cases gives you a personal, worldwide, royalty-free, non-assignable and non-exclusive license to use the data provided to you by DNA Cold Cases as part of the Services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling you to use and enjoy the benefit of the Search Services as provided by DNA Cold Cases, in the manner permitted by these terms. You may not copy, modify, distribute, sell, or lease any part of our Services, nor may you attempt to extract the data, unless your applicable law prohibits those restrictions, or you have our written permission.

PURCHASES AND/OR SUBSCRIPTIONS

By making a contribution/donation, purchase or signing up for our subscription based service fees, we are not agreeing that your search will be guaranteed to be completed. We only agree to make our best effort to work toward helping you understand your DNA results and start your family tree based on the closest relatives in your autosomal matches. We may terminate or suspend your access to our Services immediately, without prior notice or liability, for any reason whatsoever, including without limitation if you breach the Terms of Service. All provisions of the Terms which by their nature should survive termination shall survive termination, including, without limitation, ownership provisions, warranty disclaimers, indemnity and limitations of liability.

MODIFYING OUR SERVICES

We are constantly changing and improving our Services. We may add or remove functionalities or features, and we may suspend or stop a Service altogether.

TERMINATION

You can stop using our Services at any time, although we will be sorry to see you go. DNA Cold Cases may also stop providing Services to you, or add or create new limits to our Services, at any time and without notice.

We believe that you own your data and preserving your access to such data is important. If we discontinue a Service, where reasonably possible, we will give you reasonable advance notice and a chance to get information from that Service.

OUR WARRANTIES AND DISCLAIMERS

We provide our Services using a commercially reasonable level of skill and care and we hope that you will enjoy using them. But there are certain things that we do not promise about our Services.

OTHER THAN AS EXPRESSLY SET OUT IN THESE TERMS OR ADDITIONAL TERMS, NEITHER DNA COLD CASES NOR ITS SUPPLIERS OR DISTRIBUTORS MAKE ANY SPECIFIC PROMISES ABOUT THE SERVICES. FOR EXAMPLE, WE DO NOT MAKE ANY COMMITMENTS ABOUT THE CONTENT WITHIN THE SERVICES, THE SPECIFIC FUNCTIONS OF THE SERVICES, OR THEIR RELIABILITY, AVAILABILITY, OR ABILITY TO MEET YOUR NEEDS. WE PROVIDE THE SERVICES “AS IS.”

SOME JURISDICTIONS PROVIDE FOR CERTAIN WARRANTIES, LIKE THE IMPLIED WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NON-INFRINGEMENT. TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, WE EXCLUDE ALL WARRANTIES.

LIMITATIONS ON LIABILITY

WHEN PERMITTED BY LAW, DNA COLD CASES AND ITS SUBSIDIARIES AND AFFILIATES, AND THEIR DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, SHAREHOLDERS, PARTNERS, MEMBERS, AND OTHER OWNERS WILL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR LOST PROFITS, REVENUES, OR DATA, FINANCIAL LOSSES, OR INDIRECT, SPECIAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES.

TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, THE TOTAL LIABILITY OF DNA COLD CASES, AND ITS SUBSIDIARIES AND AFFILIATES, AND THEIR DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES. AGENTS, SHAREHOLDERS, PARTNERS, MEMBERS, AND OTHER OWNERS, FOR ANY CLAIMS UNDER THESE TERMS, INCLUDING FOR ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES, IS LIMITED TO THE AMOUNT YOU PAID US TO USE THE SERVICES (OR, IF WE CHOOSE, TO SUPPLYING YOU THE SERVICES AGAIN).

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL DNA COLD CASES, AND ITS SUBSIDIARIES AND AFFILIATES, AND THEIR DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES. AGENTS, SHAREHOLDERS, PARTNERS, MEMBERS, AND OTHER OWNERS SUPPLIERS AND DISTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE THAT IS NOT REASONABLY FORESEEABLE.

INDEMNIFICATION

You hereby agree to indemnify and hold harmless DNA Cold Cases, and its subsidiaries and affiliates, and their directors, officers, employees, agents, shareholders, partners, members, and other owners, against any and all claims, actions, demands, liabilities, losses, damages, judgments, settlements, costs, and expenses (including reasonable attorneys' fees) (any or all of the foregoing hereinafter referred to as "Losses") insofar as such Losses (or actions in respect thereof) arise out of or are based on (i) any claim arising out of or in any way related to the Services or these Terms.

BUSINESS USE OF OUR SERVICES

If you are using our Services on behalf of a business, that business accepts these terms. That business will hold harmless and indemnify DNA Cold Cases and its subsidiaries, and affiliates, and their directors, officers, employees, agents, shareholders, partners, members, and other owners from any claim, suit or action arising from or related to the use of the Services, or violation of these terms, including any liability or expense arising from claims, losses, damages, suits, judgments, litigation costs, and attorneys’ fees.

ABOUT THESE TERMS

We may modify these terms or any additional terms that apply to a Service to, for example, reflect changes to the law or changes to our Services. You should look at the terms regularly. We will post notice of modifications to these Terms on this page. We will post notice of modified additional terms in the applicable Service. Changes will not apply retroactively and will become effective no sooner than fourteen (14) days after they are posted. However, changes addressing new functions for a Service or changes made for legal reasons will be effective immediately. If you do not agree to the modified terms for a Service, you should discontinue your use of that Service.

If there is a conflict between these Terms and the additional terms, the additional terms will control for that conflict.

These Terms control the relationship between DNA Cold Cases and you. They do not create any third party beneficiary rights.

If you do not comply with these Terms, and we do not take action right away, this does not mean that we are giving up or waiving any rights that we may have (such as taking action in the future).

If it turns out that a particular term is not enforceable, this will not affect any other terms.

The laws of Philadelphia, U.S.A., excluding Philadelphia’s conflict of laws rules, will apply to any disputes arising out of or relating to these Terms or the Services. All claims arising out of or relating to these Terms or the Services will be litigated exclusively in the federal or state courts of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, and you and DNA Cold Cases consent to personal jurisdiction in those courts.

For information about how to contact DNA Cold Cases, please visit our contact page.

COMMUNICATION

If communication between an "adoptee" or "client" includes, inter alia, offensive, profane, lewd, obscene, vulgar, inflammatory, harmful, or disrespectful language, and/or comments deemed to be rude or inappropriate, we reserve the right to ban, and forfeit any future efforts to work with, or communicate to, the individual or third party involved. We aim to provide you with our best recommendations, but many factors will be important in determining your actual results, and we make no guarantees that you will receive a specific type of result. We make no guarantees that you will achieve any results from the ideas or strategies contained on our web site or by using any of our services. Moreover, we will never act as a mediator between a client and/or biological family, should one be found or potentially identified during your search. You fully agree and understand that DNA Cold Cases is not responsible for the dissatisfaction of any results received and makes no representations of any kind whatsoever that our Services will produce a particular result.

TRUST

Trust is an essential part of the communication between a client ("Client") or biological relative and the researcher. If the researcher agrees to assist the client, then there is a trust that must be established between the two parties. This trust can be difficult to establish or maintain over time if information is purposely withheld by the client or biological relative. DNA Cold Cases will spend literally hundreds of hours on your search, so having a clear understanding of expectations of truth, shared knowledge, and information that may have been collected before or during our participation in your search is essential to maintaining this trust. It is important for the client or biological relative to maintain open communication with the researcher.

Examples of information that should be shared:

  • If the client is working with others alongside their search with our researcher, the client should share any new findings, whether that be documentation, opinions, doubts, concerns, or other pertinent dialogue that occurs outside of the researchers' knowledge.

  • Often times, if the client is working with a television program or similar organization, the producers of the program or directors of the organization may ask the client to share all known search information. Please be advised that it is very unfair to the DNA Cold Cases researcher(s) to have his or her efforts, genealogical findings, or extensive search results used by an organization that focuses on exploiting the outcome. At the very least, the researcher should be recognized by the television program or similar organization for their efforts.

  • If the researcher is relatively confident that a match has been made, remember it is not the responsibility of the researcher to contact the match. Nor is it appropriate to blame our researcher(s) for any negative reaction that the client or relative may receive from the match. Remember, we strongly encourage patience and open communication between all parties involved in the search process.

The process involved in a search can vary, but in most cases either an extensive amount of information is already available and our researcher will help with a more traditional level of search, or the client may strongly be encouraged to take a DNA test with a genealogy DNA testing company like Ancestry DNA. In either case, the documentation, rumors, or hints a client will share with the researcher, or the results from a DNA test, will be used to establish the best substantiated information to locate a positive match. In the case of DNA results, a guest access needs to be shared with our researcher and editor rights need to be given to the researcher so that he or she may build your genetically related cousins upon an Ancestry.com tree.

Not every researcher is exactly alike. We each have methodologies, search patterns, and strategies we engage in to help provide the intended outcome. Some of us like to drive the search ourselves, while others may encourage the client to participate frequently and to assist with the search and collection of information. Sometimes our searchers will have an equal amount of both active participation and encouragement of the client's involvement.

Abruptly moving your DNA results, starting a new genealogical tree, and communicating nothing about your intensions, can cause our researcher(s) to feel their participation is no longer needed, wanted, or trusted. Please make every attempt to speak to your researcher before making any dramatic changes to information they have collected or built on your behalf.

Again, our researchers will not act as intermediaries who will reach out to biological relatives in the immediate family. There are unforeseen consequences that may make a second chance at communication impossible. It is for this reason we want clients to make the call and be prepared to ask questions or make their own attempt to start a dialogue. We do not guarantee that every "best guess" of a relative will be a hundred percent accurate.

It is for these reasons we reserve the right to not take on your case or to drop out of participation entirely if we feel you cannot keep an open and trustworthy line of communication with our researcher(s).

MULTIPLE GENEALOGISTS

While enormous cases, under very rare circumstances, might require multiple genealogists working on different branches of a tree, we strongly discourage more than one cook in the kitchen. Meaning we assign one genetic genealogist to a case and do not include other searchers to participate on that tree. This creates a situation where there are too many opportunities for differing opinions to be thrown into the search, allowing conflicts to occur. Instead of chancing such a scenario, we would rather step out of a search and let your other "personal helper" put their two cents into the search. When they are done, you may then invite us back into the case. That is even if our researcher(s) feel they can step back in without causing a rift between the two parties involved, the client and some other searcher, without causing more grief. There is nothing more aggravating than making progress on a tree only to find that someone else working on the same tree erased it because they thought it was incorrect information. If you have an individual helping you on your search, you should not be asking us to step in and give our opinion of their work. Most genealogists would rather start from scratch, as opposed to having to assume information already started was correct, only to later found that it was grossly inaccurate, wasting hundreds of hours of time coming to that conclusion.

PRIVACY

DNA Cold Cases’ Privacy Policy explain how we treat your personal data and protect your privacy when you use our Services. By using our Services, you agree that DNA Cold Cases can use such data in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Additional Disclaimer

DNA Cold Cases follows all standard protocols for the handling of samples. DNA Cold Cases follows an established procedure to take lab results (in digital format) and upload them to GEDmatch and Family Tree DNA. We do not take responsibility for and make no representation as to whether this procedure violates any privacy rights, including privacy rights of third parties. The enforcement of any such rights will be left to the courts and the owners of those source databases (currently: GEDmatch and Family Tree DNA).

entire agreement

These Terms of Service and any policies or operating rules posted by us on this site or in respect to the Products and Services constitutes the entire agreement and understanding between you and us and govern your use of the Products and Service, superseding any prior or contemporaneous agreements, communications and proposals, whether oral or written, between you and us (including, but not limited to, any prior versions of the Terms of Use).

Contact Information

For further information regarding these Terms of Service, please contact us at: support@dnacoldcases.com.