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Family Finder Matches Frequently Asked Questions

What is a centimorgan (cM)? 

A centiMorgan (cM) is a measurement of how likely a segment of DNA is to recombine from one generation to the next. A single centiMorgan is considered equivalent to a 1% (1/100) chance that a segment of DNA will crossover or recombine within one generation.

For humans, one million base pairs (bp) average about one centiMorgan. However, the rate of recombination is highly variable.

What are the Family Finder relationship ranges? 

Possible Predicted Relationships at each range:

Match Level 

Predicted Relationship 

Immediate

Parent/Child, Identical Twin/Self

Immediate

Full Sibling

Immediate

Sibling, Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Grandparent/Grandchild

Immediate

Half Sibling, Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Grandparent/Grandchild

Close

Half Sibling, Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Grandparent/Grandchild - 1st Cousin

Close

Half Sibling, Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Grandparent/Grandchild - 1st Cousin 1x Removed

Close

1st Cousin, Great/Half-Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Great Grandparent/Grandchild

Close

1st Cousin - 2nd Cousin, Great/Half-Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Great Grandparent/Grandchild

Close

1st Cousin - 3rd Cousin, Great/Half-Uncle/Aunt/Niece/Nephew, Great Grandparent/Grandchild

Close

2nd Cousin - 3rd Cousin

Distant

2nd Cousin - 4th Cousin

Distant

3rd Cousin - 4th Cousin

Distant

3rd Cousin - 5th Cousin

Remote

4th Cousin - Remote Cousin

Remote

5th Cousin - Remote Cousin

Does Family Finder use mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) test results?

No. The Family Finder software does not use mitochondrial DNA results for matching or relatedness calculations. The Family Finder program uses only the autosomal SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) test results from the Family Finder microarray chip.
 

Does Family Finder use Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) test results?

No. The Family Finder software does not use Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) results for matching or relatedness calculations. The Family Finder program uses only the autosomal SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) test results from the Family Finder microarray chip.

Why isn't my Y-DNA close match not a Family Finder match?

If your Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) match is not on your Family Finder match list, it may be that the match did not take the Family Finder test. Matches do not work across databases. You may check this on your Y-DNA match list by looking for FF or Family Finder next to the match’s name. If FF or Family Finder is displayed, then your match has taken the Family Finder test.

If both you and your match have taken the Family Finder test but do not match, it means that your relationship is unlikely to be within the past five generations.

Why can't my close match and I find common surnames or ancestors in my matches? 

It is both possible and reasonable for you not to have matches in common with a close cousin. For example, your relationship with your close cousin may be through your mother. However, your relationship to the majority of your matches may be through your father.




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