Frequently Asked Questions about our Genealogy Services

It has been over a month since we started to provide Genealogy Services.

We are currently working on over a dozen research projects, several others are already completed.

There are many new queries and we have our hands full. Each family story is interesting and we always feel joy and excitement when it turns out that we can help in some way.

During this month of our communication with you, there are some questions that are often repeated. Therefore we have decided to answer the most popular and important.

• Do you do the research now, during the lockdown?

Yes, sometimes we do. It depends on the area of interest and the scope of the project. In some cases the resources are available online. Sometimes, the initial stage requires only a few phone calls or checking our databases, which we can also do now. The archives and most of the institutions are closed for visitors, but their employees are present, so we can consult with them on some basic cases.

We have quite a large number of research projects which are already booked and we will complete them as soon as it will be possible. Of course, the services which are paid earlier will be handled first.

• Do you do the research outside Poland?

Yes, our genealogists have experience in researching all neighboring countries which used to belong to the Polish territory: Western Ukraine, Belarus, Slovakia, Lithuania. If necessary, we might also cooperate with locally based, experienced genealogists.

• Who will do the research for me?

We are a close-knit team working together for years. We have a network of researchers specializing in particular regions. We operate locally and this is one of our greatest strengths. Our research managers will take care of your project, coordinating it as a whole from the first contact, through preparing quota and directing the best researcher to a specific archive. Here you can read more about our team (recently updated :-)).

• What does the process before and during the research look like?

First and foremost: contact us to explain your needs. Fill out the research request form.

We will get back to you within 5 working days. It is free of charge up to this stage. In the email you will receive information about possible direction and scope of the research with costs and links to the online payment form. We will be waiting for your decision for 21 days.

After receiving your positive decision and payment, we will start the research. If it is a large project you will be informed about the progress of the whole process regularly. After the research, you will receive a detailed report.

• What will I receive as a result of the research?

The research is completed with a Research Report. It includes all the details of our discoveries, scans of the records (if there was no restriction on the Archives side), all the most important data noted from the record, and a research summary. In the report we also describe the next possible steps. Here you can see how such a report may look like.

• How much will it cost?

We approach each request individually and the cost is dependent on the region, location of the resources, scope of the project, and many other factors.

For the most basic queries, we might suggest the First Leads stage. This is a stepping stone project – an initial work that needs to be done by our genealogists within 3 working hours. Results of this project may include: confirmation of place of origin of your ancestors, availability of given kind of records for given place we know we can use to do thorough research, finding a specific record of your ancestor, or in case of relatives search, it may be the confirmation that people bearing your forefathers’ surname still live in their town.

At this stage we can also verify if there is a chance for you to be able to confirm your Polish citizenship.

As the outcome of this stage, we will know about the further possible direction of the research. You can then continue the research by yourself or ask us to help you in the next stages. The cost of the First Leads packet is 750 Polish zlotys.

The other service options are BasicStandard, and Advanced Research. They are described on the site: https://polishorigins.com/genealogy and quoted on request after analysis of your specific case.

• Why am I supposed to pay in Polish zlotys?

The same we in case of our tour services, for genealogy services we accept payments in Polish zloty currency. We are from Poland and we are a Polish business entity. We do accounting in Polish currency – Polish zlotys (PLN or zł). For you to have an orientation about the value of your payment click here to check the current average currency exchange rate between the US Dollar and Polish zloty USD/PLN. This is an average currency exchange rate and it is usually distorted by commissions charged by all the financial intermediary institutions.

• Is this online payment safe?

To collect payments we use the payment platform – Stripe. You can pay using your credit/debit card. Stripe is a safe, global, well-known company, that provides online payments all over the world. Stripe is a leader among other similar companies not only because of its scope but mostly because of its care for safety.
If you prefer you can us PayPal or wire transfer.

• What information should I already have to start?

We often emphasize that starting with checked, structured data and having precise goals and expectations are the fundamentals for successful research. If you have the place name but are not sure where this is located or do not know how the surname should be written correctly – do not worry. We might be able to help. The absolute minimum we need is name and surname, year of birth or immigration, any relative’s names (spouse, parents, children – especially all who were also born in Poland), place of birth or residence. It is good if you can share with us the sources (records, censuses, passengers lists etc.)

Prepare what you have and fill out the request. We will be honored to help you in uncovering your roots in old Poland!

Agnieszka Pawlus

PolishOrigins Team

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