Explore your family story with our new tool — Relatives In Common™. By locating the genetic relatives you share with your DNA Relatives matches, you may be able to figure out how a match is connected to you. In addition to finding relatives you share, you can also see if your mutual relative shares the same DNA with both you and your match, which may allow you to quickly find relatives that descend from the same line of your family.
To get started with Relatives In Common:
- Go to the DNA Relatives tool.
- Click on a relative.
- Scroll down the page to the Relatives section.
We’re excited about this tool and have a lot to say on the subject. You can read this article in its entirety or you can jump straight to the section that interests you:
- Applying Relatives In Common (to help you find out how people on your list are connected to you)
- DNA Relatives Overview
- Relatives In Common Explained
- Shared DNA Explained
- Get Started With Relatives In Common
Applying Relatives In Common
Locating genetic relatives in DNA Relatives is only the first step in learning more about your family story. Once you've found a genetic relative, a little detective work might let you pinpoint your recent common ancestor and learn about your shared family history. Relatives In Common and Shared DNA are two tools you can use to find individuals that likely descend from the same branch of your family tree.
By finding groups of related people and either knowing how one person in the group is related to you or by sharing information about your family with each other, you may be able to discover how your DNA Relatives matches are connected to you and others, and even potentially identify your recent common ancestor.
Visualization of how shared DNA can be traced back to a recent common ancestor.
By sharing and comparing your knowledge of your family history with others, you may find a shared piece of information. The following pieces of information can be helpful to share when communicating with your genetic relatives:
- Known surnames in your pedigree
- Birthplaces of ancestors
- Noteworthy family stories
As with the sharing of any information, we urge customers to be thoughtful about information they share; please see our Privacy Statement for more information.
The DNA Relatives tool is an interactive 23andMe tool, allowing you to find and connect with your genetic relatives and learn more about your family story. Genetic relatives (also known as DNA Relatives matches) are identified by comparing your DNA with the DNA of other 23andMe customers who are participating in the DNA Relatives tool. When two people are found to have an identical DNA segment, they very likely share a recent common ancestor. The DNA Relatives tool uses the length and number of these identical segments to predict the relationship between genetic relatives.
Relatives In Common
Relatives In Common is a table within the DNA Relatives tool that allows you to see the genetic relatives that you and a DNA Relatives match have in common, as well as the estimated relationships and whether all three individuals might descend from the same lineage.
The Relatives In Common table is created by looking at your DNA Relatives list and checking to see if any other relatives on your list shares at least 5cM (centiMorgans) of identical DNA with your match. Relatives that meet this threshold are then listed in the Relatives In Common table. Viewing your shared relatives can help narrow down particular lineages to help you find the lineage you both share.
The Shared DNA column in the Relatives In Common table will display whether all three individuals — you, your DNA Relatives match, and your Relative in Common — have any locations where DNA is shared. In order to see whether or not you share DNA in the same region of your genome, your DNA Relatives match and the relative in common both need to be participating in Open Sharing and/or have an established sharing connection with you.
Yes - Shared DNA
If there is a region of overlap among all three of you, then we say that you have “Shared DNA” and a “Yes” is displayed in this column. If all three of you have Shared DNA, then you very likely descend from the same recent common ancestor.
No - Shared DNA
If there is not an overlapping region of shared DNA among all three of you, then a “No” is displayed in this column. While the three of you may actually share the same recent common ancestor, it is also possible that you are related through different lineages of your family.
Share to See
In order to see whether or not you share DNA in the same region of your genome, you will need to establish a sharing connection with the common relative. You can establish a sharing connection and send a request to share Ancestry reports, click “Share to see” and then “Request to share.”
Any common relatives with an anonymous match will display “Not available” in the Shared DNA column, regardless of each common relative’s sharing status with you. This is because anonymous matches have not yet opted in to participate in the updated DNA Relatives. The option to be anonymous no longer exists in the updated DNA Relatives tool, and in order to access the feature, participants must select a display name.
Viewing shared DNA segments
To view your shared segments, click on the blue “Yes” or “No” under the Shared DNA column; you will be taken to the DNA Comparison tool where you can see segment data across multiple pairs of people. These segments reflect the identical DNA that you both inherited from a recent common ancestor. Your shared segments with each relative will be colored differently.
Get started with Relatives In Common
To see your shared relatives, click on a match in your DNA Relatives list and scroll down to the Relatives section. In this section, you can see the list of relatives that you have in common, the predicted relationship between each pair, and in some cases, if you share DNA in the same region of your genome. Keep in mind that only matches with whom you have a sharing connection or those participating in Open Sharing will display whether or not you share DNA in the same region of your genome.