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  • No replacement for kit lost in mail?

    My family and friends have used Genographic kits successfully, but the latest kit apparently got lost in the mail back to the lab (or got lost in the lab itself). The horrifying news is that apparently, National Geographic cannot verify that a kit was lost and send out another. Phone calls initially resulted in incorrect information, then eventually a promise of followup which never came. I am afraid that we are simply out the $107.

    Has anyone successfully convinced National Geographic or Family Tree DNA to re-send a kit that has apparently gotten lost in the return mail or in the lab? If not, this is more than sufficient reason never to recommend the Genographic Project again.

  • #2
    Originally posted by lgmayka
    My family and friends have used Genographic kits successfully, but the latest kit apparently got lost in the mail back to the lab (or got lost in the lab itself). The horrifying news is that apparently, National Geographic cannot verify that a kit was lost and send out another. Phone calls initially resulted in incorrect information, then eventually a promise of followup which never came. I am afraid that we are simply out the $107.

    Has anyone successfully convinced National Geographic or Family Tree DNA to re-send a kit that has apparently gotten lost in the return mail or in the lab? If not, this is more than sufficient reason never to recommend the Genographic Project again.
    FTDNA has replaced a kit for me, but never National Geographic.

    Since the Genographic kits are anonymous when ordered, my understanding is that they cannot associate any particular kit with any particular order. The product is, in effect, the retail kit not the test itself.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by vineviz
      The product is, in effect, the retail kit not the test itself.
      But even if one takes that point of view, the kit is bundled with the genetic testing of itself, and that testing is an essential component of the kit. (Indeed, the test constitutes almost the entire value of the kit.) Depending on how National Geographic and FTDNA handle their accounting, either NG has already collected my money and but will not spend any of it on a kit that has been lost and can't be tested, or else FTDNA has collected test money from NG and now doesn't need to spend any of it on the actual testing procedure.

      Whichever company is holding unearned money should be able to detect that, and thus to either provide the contracted service or a refund.

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      • #4
        Have you tried contacting FTDNA about this, or just NGS?

        Seems to me that they should be able to verify if they received the sample with your family member's GPID and, if not, maybe they can issue a new test kit (just the swabs and vials) under that GPID. Or maybe they can cancel that GPID and issue a new test kit with a new GPID?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by lgmayka
          But even if one takes that point of view, the kit is bundled with the genetic testing of itself, and that testing is an essential component of the kit.
          I can see why someone might think so.

          Personally, I think that persistent communication with National Geographic will result in the receipt of a replacement kit. In the long run, that's probably the easiest and cheapest way to maintain customer satisfaction

          However, the Genographic public participation kits are designed such that participants are anonymous. National Geographic, by design, does not know which kit numbers have been sold and which remain in inventory. They certainly don't know that the kit they sold you has been lost.

          That's simply the downside of the anonymity.

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          • #6
            Kit has been found!

            The Genographic Project advertises an email address, [email protected] . In the past, I have sent email to this address on other matters, without any response; but on this matter, I decided to send a clearly worded request for a new kit, on the basis that the one I ordered had been lost in the mail or at the lab.

            Miraculously, I today received the best response I could hope for. The ID number I had was merely incorrect by one digit--I had an '8' where an 'S' should be. I checked on the Genographic web site, and the kit is in its final stage. With any luck at all, we should have results before Christmas.

            I had actually thought of this possibility several weeks ago, and had tried quite a few variations, including a '3' for an '8' and a 'B' for an '8'. However, I did not try an 'S' for an '8'.

            Two points about this specific error:

            1) NG's precise phrasing is either very polite and does not wish to place the fault on me for misreading the ID, or...NG actually misprinted the ID (i.e., the alphanumeric ID was out of sync with the bar code). NG's exact phrase is:

            "There was a minor error with the GPID number..."

            2) It is still quite possible, even probable, that NG does not keep track of the ID associated with an order. More likely, the NG staff simply has a program to check whether an ID is potentially valid, and if it isn't, perhaps the program itself suggests nearby IDs that are valid.


            Those of you who are Catholic can attribute this small miracle to the intercession of St. Anthony:

            http://www.stanthony.org/aboutanthony/history.asp

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            • #7
              Happy for you!

              So very happy for you! I sure wish my mtDNA, X and autosomal results would come in.
              Maria

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              • #8
                We ordered a kit and after 8 weeks I contacted National Geographic and they sent a replacement kit. Matter of fact, we just did the cheek scrapes today and sent it back! There was no problem with National Geographic when I told them we never received our kit, they sent another right away with no charge.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by lgmayka
                  My family and friends have used Genographic kits successfully, but the latest kit apparently got lost in the mail back to the lab (or got lost in the lab itself). The horrifying news is that apparently, National Geographic cannot verify that a kit was lost and send out another. Phone calls initially resulted in incorrect information, then eventually a promise of followup which never came. I am afraid that we are simply out the $107.

                  Has anyone successfully convinced National Geographic or Family Tree DNA to re-send a kit that has apparently gotten lost in the return mail or in the lab? If not, this is more than sufficient reason never to recommend the Genographic Project again.
                  Isn't there any receipt or anything? Or confirmation number-or does you're credit card company recognize that you paid for the kit?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Jambalaia32
                    Isn't there any receipt or anything? Or confirmation number-or does you're credit card company recognize that you paid for the kit?
                    Yes, a receipt comes with the kit, but the receipt does not have the special Genographic ID code necessary to look up one's results. I forget where the ID code actually is--perhaps it's on the consent form that you mail back with the sample?

                    Everything I've read indicates that National Geographic really cannot retrieve your ID code if you lose it completely after sending back the sample. However, if you did write down the ID code, albeit imperfectly, and you are only one letter/number off, apparently NG can find the nearest correct code.

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                    • #11
                      I am going to give a Genographic Project mtDNA test to my girlfriend for her birthday, which is two weeks from tomorrow. How long does it take between the time of ordering it online until the kit, with the DVD included, arrives?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MMaddi
                        I am going to give a Genographic Project mtDNA test to my girlfriend for her birthday, which is two weeks from tomorrow. How long does it take between the time of ordering it online until the kit, with the DVD included, arrives?
                        My experience has been that from order to delivery is only 1-2 business days; but the kit is apparently sent by media mail (because of the DVD), and hence takes 5-6 business days.

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