AncestryDNA - Assign relationships

How do you match your AncestryDNA match?

If you have tested your DNA on AncestryDNA, you can now review your DNA matches and confirm the relationship that they have to you.

Click through to your DNA Matches screen and you may be seeing the “Do you recognize them?” options on the right-hand side of your screen (if you haven't got them yet... they're coming).

AncestryDNA Do you recognize them button


Step by Step

Here's the steps for confirming a relationship.

1. I'm using my brother as an example and because I knew that my match was my brother, I just clicked on the Yes button. If I wasn’t sure I could click on the Learn more button and go to the usual View Match screen.

2. Select which side of the family the match is from. With my brother this is "Both sides" as we share both parents.

AncestryDNA - Relationship Assignment - Choose side of family

3. After choosing "Both sides" I got a list of options for what our relationship may be. In this case the list was very short as the only option was for my match to be my brother.

AncestryDNA - Relationship Assignment - Assign relationship

4. Once I clicked on the Brother option, I then was asked to confirm I was sure. 

 AncestryDNA - Relationship Assignment - Confirm relationship

5. Once my brother was confirmed the screen reverted to giving me the View Match button.

6. If you need to change the relationship, you will need to View the match where you will find the ability to edit the relationship.

AncestryDNA- Edit the Assigned Relationship


Some things to watch out for

The both option also allows you to give relationships to people that may match you on both sides of the family but at this stage you can only assign one relationship. I’d go with the closest relationship and make sure I added notes for other relationships.

Watch for the “Show more possible relationships” at the bottom of the relationship list.

AncestryDNA - Relationship Assignment - Show more relationships

I've chosen a couple of close matches here, so my list of possible relationships has been short. Here's an example of a relation that I share 154cM with.

AncestryDNA - Assign Relationship - Relationships List choice
That's a long list... and I'm sure it's not the longest list that can be found. You're going to have to do some research on the match first and make a note of what your relationship is before you start the process of assigning a relationship.

If you get started on assigning a relationship and then want to get out, there is both a back button and also an exit "x" at the top right of the window. You can also choose the "I'm not sure" option at the bottom of the screen.


What's in it for me?

By assigning relationships to your shared matches, it makes it easy to quickly scan your matches to see which ones you still need to investigate further.

AncestryDNA - Assign Relationship scan matches to see matches needing more research

You can click on the Groups button and choose to look at your matches by Mother's side and Father's side.

That can be really useful if you have the same surname on both sides of the family and you want to just work on one side of the family at the time. 

AncestryDNA - Search relationship by side of the family

Hopefully this is a step toward automating which side of our family new matches are on, especially for us that don't have parents to test.


This isn't magic however, you'll still need to do your family history research.
If you need some one on one help with your DNA matches.

Book your free 15min family history or dna chat with Fiona Brooker





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Hi Jim, This is being rolled out at the present, but I don’t know what the time frame is. I manage a number of DNA kits and not all of them have it yet. In the mean time, keep building your tree to include siblings and descendants. Fiona

Fiona Brooker

When should everyone see this because I do not see it yet. I know others do.


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