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Code of Ethics

(Click here for .pdf version)

As a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists I agree that professionalism in genealogy requires ethical conduct in all relationships with the present or potential genealogical community. I therefore agree to:

  1. Promote a coherent, truthful approach to genealogy, family history and local history.
  2. Present research results and opinions in a clear, well-organized manner; fully and accurately cite references; and refrain from withholding, suppressing, or knowingly misquoting or misinterpreting sources or data.
  3. Promote the trust and security of genealogical consumers.
  4. Advertise services and credentials honestly, avoiding the use of misleading or exaggerated representations; explain without concealment or misrepresentation all fees, charges, and payment structures; abide by agreements regarding project scope, number of hours, and deadlines and reporting schedules; keep adequate, accessible records of financial and project-specific contacts with the consumer; and refrain from knowingly violating or encouraging others to violate laws and regulations concerning copyright, right to privacy, business finances, or other pertinent subjects.
  5. Support initiatives that preserve public records and access to them.
  6. Be courteous to research facility personnel and treat records with care and respect; support efforts to locate, collect, and preserve the records by compiling, cataloging, reproducing, and indexing documents; refrain from mutilating, rearranging, or removing from their proper custodians printed, original, microfilmed, or electronic records.
  7. Promote the welfare of the genealogical community.
  8. Give proper credit to those who supply information and provide assistance; refrain from (or avoid) knowingly soliciting established clients of another researcher; encourage applicable education, accreditation, and certification; and refrain from public behavior, oral remarks or written communications that defame the profession, individual genealogists, or the Association of Professional Genealogists.

Why the Code?

The Association of Professional Genealogists has a responsibility to serve both its diverse membership and the genealogical client community.

The significance of ethics to APG and its members is reflected in the manner in which complaints are processed and resolved.

When a violation of this Code is alleged, it will be reviewed and investigated if the Professional Review Committee determines it meets all the criteria for such action.

The complaint and disciplinary procedures accomplish five things:

Who can file a complaint?

What we won't review

If you believe an APG member has violated this code

After the investigation

Other "Codes of Ethics"




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