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Irritated about refund policy

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  • Irritated about refund policy

    I have two kits I would consider upgrading from Y111 to the Big 700 but I've been told that I have to pay for it in advance (understandable) but it's VERY possible that there may not be enough DNA sample left to do the test especially in the case of one of the kits. It's my understanding that if that is the case a new kit will be sent out for another sample. The problem is that neither one of these donors are available to give another sample. Should I not be given a refund if there is not enough DNA to test?

  • #2
    The current refund policy, as of 22 Oct. 2019, differs greatly from an earlier one of 22 May 2019* (which was actually a section of the Gene by Gene Privacy Policy page, titled "FamilyTreeDNA Refund Policy"). The latter referred to the conditions to cancel an order up to three years from the initial order, with increasing amounts deducted from the full price. For refunds for tests such as the Big Y, the May 2018 Refund Policy also said:
    MtDNA and Y-DNA Tests (Sanger and NextGen Sequencing)

    If additional samples are not obtainable for tests run on Sanger and NextGen Sequencing (Full Mitochondrial Sequence (mtDNA), Y-DNA37, Y-DNA67, Y-DNA111, and Big Y), FamilyTreeDNA may credit or refund, at its sole discretion, the cost of the test minus a $10 USD shipping and handling fee as well as a 25% lab processing fee for orders greater than $79 USD. We do not offer credits or refunds for products when the retail price of the order was equal to or less than $79 USD. This includes sale pricing.
    The new Oct. 2019 refund policy no longer contains that wording. It now appears that no refund will be given in a situation like yours. The current policy now states:
    Refund Policy for Upgrades & Add-On Tests

    If a test is ordered as an upgrade or add on to an existing kit, we will issue a refund minus a 5% fee if your request is submitted prior to the lab processing your sample. If your request is submitted after processing has begun, your refund request will be denied. All requests must be made within 24 hours of placing the order.

    Modifying & Moving Tests

    Once a sample has begun processing in our lab, the new or existing kit order is no longer eligible for modifications or any type of refund. Modifications are changes to the type(s) of test(s) you have ordered.
    In my opinion, in the case of your two kits, I would not invest in the Big Y-700 unless you can afford the likely monetary loss. I believe the lab needs a fresh sample for the Big Y-700 (from a previously submitted, stored unused vial, or if needed, a new sample).

    You may want to phone them, or submit a customer service form request, to ask about this change, and strongly encourage that they go back to the earlier option.

    *NOTE: the date at the bottom of the 22 May version says "Last updated 3/12/2019," but if you use the link to "Read the previous version of this document," it goes instead to the 3/12/2019 Terms of Service page, not to any previous Refund Policy page, or Privacy Page - very confusing.
    Last edited by KATM; 27 November 2019, 07:26 PM.


    • #3
      I had the same issue with a FF test for a relative years ago. There was not enough sample and hence no results. I still had to pay and this was when FF was a relatively new test and expensive.
      If in doubt do not order the test.
      I have a few family members I would like to test for the Big Y, but will need to find another close relative to supply the sample.


      • #4
        Thanks Tenn4ever for the link to the old Refund Policy -- for Family Finder they had "The following refund policies apply:
        • For Family Finder tests purchased prior to the last 12 months or as an upgrade to a kit ordered over 12 months ago, if the secondary sample fails, you will be sent a new set of vials and swabs so that we can perform a third attempt for free.
        • For Family Finder tests purchased during the last 12 months, if the secondary sample fails, you will be contacted regarding the possibility of a third testing attempt with a new sample for a $50 US lab fee. The lab fee is charged because for samples that are less than one year old, the test generally only fails because of the poor quality of the collection."
        BUT - now it apparently does not matter how old the Kit is - the policy is
        "In the rare circumstance that a sample fails initial testing, we will begin a second run if there is a sample in storage. If we do not have an additional sample in storage, we will mail out a second collection kit, free of shipping charges, to the address on file. Adjustments to the shipping address can be made on the Contact Information section of the Account Information page.
        If the sample fails subsequent testing, the following chart outlines our retesting policy for one (1) more testing attempt:"
        -- And the Chart shows for FamilyFinder, it is 2 Failures allowed, then Fee for additional attempt once failure limit is reached is $50

        This leaves me scared to use Kits I purchased in the past but have not used yet. Any suggestions?

        Also - Does anybody know - is that one additional attempt with the same sample, or with a new sample, or does it depend (and if so, on what?)?