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Friday, July 4, 2014

Thank you Ancestry.com for a Simple and Uncomplicated Refund for my Non-Processed Y-DNA and mtDNA Tests

At the beginning of this June, Ancestry.com announced that it was retiring several of the websites it had purchased over the years AND its Y-DNA and mtDNA testing (referred to as LegacyDNA). I do not know how many people were affected by this elimination of Y-DNA and mtDNA testing, but I was one of them. The way I was affected though was probably different than most.

Back in 2008 we had bought the tests (on sale) to test a sister and brother. For various reasons we had not been able to perform and mail in the tests. Last year, sometime in the Spring-time, I had called Ancestry.com's customer service to make sure the tests were still valid. Since we had not performed the tests and the DNA would be fresh, the representative said yes the tests were still okay to use. I had hoped to perform the test shortly after that but it was not to be.

Fast forward to this June's announcement. At first I was devastated. Now what do I do? But then I started thinking of it as: well, if we had actually done the tests we would now be scrambling to download the data and screen capture the matches/potential matches and trying to figure out how to best handle the situation.

Ancestry.com had a phone number on the FAQ page for the LegacyDNA to call if your LegacyDNA test had not been processed. I could not call immediately because we were headed out on vacation. Once we returned the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack occurred that Monday and I thought I would give Ancestry.com some time to deal with the situation. I ended up not calling the phone number until June 27.

Though I had a wait over five minutes for a representative, I was really surprised by the experience. I honestly thought I would have to argue to get any money back. But that was not the case.

What happened was me saying that I called regarding the retirement of the Y-DNA and mtDNA testing and that I had one test of each that had not been processed. The representative responded with something like, "and you would like a refund." She took some information, verified that I was me and what I paid for the tests and put me on hold to fill in the refund form. (Yes, I had a copy of my purchase confirmation sitting in front of me so I could verify when and how much I paid for each test.) When she came back on the line she explained the refund process and what she could tell me of the timing of how long it would take for a refund. It was that simple. No arguing and no attempt to keep the money by offering me something else instead of a refund.

So hopefully, sometime this week or so my credit card will receive the refund and I will not have to change/update this post into a bad experience. The representative did caution if they had a problem crediting the credit card that they would then issue a check which would lengthen the time to receive the refund.

I hope others in similar situations as me have a good experience also.

With this event happening, it prompted us to actually perform the various autosomal tests (from Ancestry and FamilyTree DNA) that we have purchased and mail them in. Earlier this year I got a great price on a full-sequence mt-DNA test from another company so we made sure to perform that one too. It will be interesting to see what differences in ethnic heritage there may be between the two companies and their autosomal tests.

Now if FamilyTree DNA would offer a sale on its entry or mid-point Y-DNA tests as a "Come Join Us" offer, things will continue to be looking up.

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