PSFS Family Directory - Family List: How to prepare a single-member family record so the single-member may be imported into another family

How to prepare a single-member family record so the single-member may be imported into another family

If you want to import the only member of a family into another family, you cannot leave the sole member's family record empty. Therefore, you must create a placeholder record first, move the member out by importing them into the new family record, then delete the family record that is left with the placeholder record.

  1. Click Family List to display the Family List page.

  1. Select the name of the family that has one member. The family record is displayed. For example:

  1. Select the Member Details tab.

  2. Select Add to display a blank new member form. For example:

    This workaround requires that you complete this form using fictitious information. Essentially, by using a fictitious name you will prevent the application from thinking that the family record is empty.

  1. Using fictitious information, complete the form, filling in the required (*) fields only. Set the Status option to Inactive.

  1. Click Add. The fictitious member is added to the family record and assigned a tab under Member Details.

  1. Select the Family Details tab to display the family record.

  1. Click Edit Details to put the form in edit mode. Then, do the following:

  • Set the Family Group option to Inactive.

  • Deselect the Registration Status option to change the family's registration status to "unregistered".

  1. Click Save & Close to exit the tab and return to the Family List page. You can now proceed to import the real member to another family. See How to import a member from one family into another family.

What to do with the fictitious member record

The final step will depend on if the member you are merging into another family record has contributions and, if so, if the contributions have been attributed to the family record (most common practice) or to the member record (less common).

  • If the member being merged into another family has no contribution history in their original family record, you may delete the fictitious record.
  • If the member being merged into another family has contribution history in their original member record, (you have it set up such that contributions are associated with a member record rather than with a family record), you may delete the fictitious record because contributions would have followed the member to the new family.
  • If the member being merged into another family has contribution history associated with their original family record, the new fictitious record should not be deleted.  If this is the case, rename the fictitious member to the name of the member with the word "legacy" after (or some other indication that it is a record from before the merge. This will keep in tact any historical information associated with this member before the merge.


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  • I wish you would figure out another solution to merging 2 single family members in to 1 family when couples marry instead of creating fictitious records... our db is so full of bad information now, and this will only create more problems for us in the future.

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  • Debi, we have entered your suggestion as an enhancement request. Thank you for taking the time to communicate your needs.

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  • Your instructions should be changed to say to delete the fictitious family record when you finish importing the good member out of it. This eliminates the problem of bad information in the database.

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  • Thanks for the idea, Diane. We have updated our article to include your suggestion. It's a little more complicated than just deleting the fictitious member record though. The idea is to preserve the history of the original family, especially contribution history. We updated the article to take that into consideration too.

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