Handling Divorced or Separated Families

Getting a handle on family data, especially when it relates to children, of divorced or separated parents is difficult. Dealing with Giving records can also take a little bit of work. The good news is despite this complication, there are great tools to help easily link or move this data to the right place so that you have clean information despite the tricky family situation.

A primary consideration, DO NOT duplicate the kids records and put a copy under each parent. This will cause many problems that you really don't want. This will negatively influence reporting, name lookup, keeping the kid's info in sync, etc.

Your organization needs to know before acting on the following information whether one of the spouses is moving out or away and which is staying. Make sure there is an answer to the following considerations:

  • Which family member will the donations need to go to?
  • Who will have custody of the children?
  • Which family members will still be attending the church?


Equipped with this information, we can act on the following items.

Giving Records

Before moving people to different households and splitting things apart, find out where the donations should go. This data is VERY easy to move upfront to the person that gave the most or the primary contributor in the family for tax reasons. This is especially important if it was not the primary family member and the donations were grouped together.

To change the primary in the linked household (this is the person you can move all the donations to), use the following process. Select the pencil icon in the Family tab to edit the relationships.

edit family relationships

This allows for the relationships to be adjusted in the family. Change the main member by using the radio button to the person that has the closest relationship to the organization and that the main amount of contributions will go to. In our example, the wife will become the new 'primary' and the husband would become a relevant relationship.

family relationships before editing

family relationships after editing

Apply the changes made by using the SAVE button. Make sure the group giving with the family is still in place. Once this edit is complete, use the consolidate giving tool to move ALL the contributions to the new primary family member.

Consolidate Family Giving

After all the records have been moved to the person that has the largest amount of records to keep, single transactions can be moved to the other spouse a record at a time.

Setting Up Separate Households

You need to know whether one of the spouses is moving out and then you need to move that spouse to their own household. To do so, go to the family member that is being separated and open their profile, then use the Family tab. Select the Pencil Icon for options and click "X".

This cannot be done on a Primary family member, so address the relationships and giving first.

Move an Individual to a New Family

Check-In and Communication Setup

You need to know whether both spouses are going to continue coming to the church and whether they will have the children when they come. In many cases, eventually only one (or neither!) of the spouses will continue to come to the church. You need to keep (or move) the kids to the same household with that spouse who keeps attending the church. If needed, use the same steps as above to move the kids.

However, if both spouses continue to come to the church and they both could be bringing the kids one of the spouses will not have any of the kids in their household record. The individual with no children can be tied in from the child's profile using Other Relationships. This allows for check-in permissions and additional options for communication and directory linking.

Other Relationships






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