Open-Ended Research Fee



I can do record searches and/or an hourly fee structure.

Record Search: $45 minimum hourly charge, plus the actual document and travel costs. These factor in Genlighten’s fees for connecting us. Travel costs are based at 50 cents per mile plus parking, or the cost of a transport pass if taking public transportation to the area. The transport cost will be the lesser of the two if at all possible, and likely $5 or less. A vital record from Chicago costs around $17 by last search if not available through the Wilmette Family History Center. If the record is not a Chicago vital record, whatever the cost of the record (uncertified unless requested or required) will be passed directly to the client.

Research Cost: I start at a four-hour minimum retainer, also $45/hour. The retainer includes initial research intake information session, data entry build (GEDCOM), review of documents supplied to me, report creation, invoice creation, and research time and travel expenses.

Special projects, website builds, LDS services syncing with FamilySearch Family Tree and other services available upon request.

My professional background includes 17 years of researching privately and professionally, and I am a member of the Chicago Genealogical Society.

I do not promise or guarantee that you will receive confirmation of family stories, but I will search available records and will do due diligence in the time allotted for research. I reserve right to subcontract to colleagues based upon location or specialty if needed, although this is not expected on a regular basis.

$45.00 /hour + expenses

Retainer upfront; Balance due on completion


Chicago, Illinois


Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) at NEIU

Park Ridge Public Library

Schiller Park Public Library

Eisenhower Public Library District

Elmwood Park Public Library

Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest

Maywood Public Library District

Melrose Park Public Library

Niles Public Library District

Norwood Park Historical Society

Oak Park Public Library

River Forest Public Library

River Grove Public Library District

Ordering instructions from roots4all

I follow the methods and rules established by Genlighten, and expect a client to offer me cases through the Project or Public Request system.

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