How do I merge duplicates in Family Tree by ID?

In Family Tree, the Possible Duplicates feature may not list all of a person’s duplicate records. If you know the ID number of a duplicate that is not listed, you can use it to merge the records. 

Before you start          

Obtain the ID number of the record to be merged. 

Steps (website)              

  1. In Family Tree, display the person page of one of the duplicate records.
  2. If the Details section is not displayed, click Details
  3. Click Merge by ID. It is located in the Tools section, along the right side of the page. 
  4. Enter the ID number with capital letters and the hyphen. 
  5. Click Continue. The merge screen opens in a new browser tab.
    • Left side: This is the possible duplicate. It is deleted if you merge the records.
    • ​​Right side: This is the record you started from. It is saved if you merge the records.
  6. Decide if the records are about the same person. 
    1. Compare the left and right sides for matching names, dates, places, and family members. 
    2. Read any warning messages on the screen.  
    3. If the record on the left is the most accurate, click Switch to keep it instead. 
    4. If the records are not about the same person, click Not a Match. If the records are about the same person, click Yes Continue. If you are not sure, click Cancel
  7. On the surviving record, review all information that has a green background. Highlighted information will be copied to the surviving record when you complete the merge. If this information should not be saved on the surviving record, click Undo.
  8. Click Continue
  9. Finish the merge: 
    1. Review the surviving record. 
    2. If everything looks as it should, click Finish Merge
    3. To explain why you merged these records, either select a suggested reason statement or enter one of your own.
  10. Click Save.  

Immediately after the merge and for a short time, an “undo” option is available. It lets you easily unmerge the two records.                   

Steps (mobile app) 

  1. In the Family Tree mobile app, display the person page of one of the duplicate records.
  2. Tap on the three dots in the top, right corner. 
  3. Tap Possible Duplicates​​​​​​​.
    • Tap Merge by ID
    • Enter the ID number with capital letters and the hyphen, and tap Go
    • Tap Review Merge
    • Read the warning, and tap Continue Merge. The merge screen appears. 
      • Left side: This is the possible duplicate. It is deleted if you merge the records. 
      • Right side: This is the record you started from. It is saved if you merge the records. 
    • Decide if the records are about the same person. 
      • Compare the left and right sides for matching names, dates, places, and family members. 
      • If the record on the left is the most accurate, click Switch to keep it instead. 
    • Decide whether to keep any information from the person to be deleted. 
      • To move information from the left to the right, click Replace
      • To add information from the left to the right, click Add. 
      • Tip: If the record on the left contains duplicate parents, spouses, or children, add them to the surviving record. You can merge these duplicates later. 
    • When you finish, scroll down to the bottom of the page, and tap Continue Merge
    • Enter a reason to explain why you merged these records. 
    • Tap Merge.

    Note: The iOS version of the app only has the option to Replace information instead of to Switch or Add it.

    Steps (Family Tree Lite) 

    Currently, Family Tree Lite does not allow merging. Sign in to the FamilySearch website or the Family Tree mobile app to continue the merging process.   

    Recommended next steps    

    1. Remove incorrect sources or memories from the surviving record. 
    2. Review the person’s family members to see if they also have possible duplicates.

    Related articles

    How do I merge possible duplicates in Family Tree?
    How can I find a deceased person in Family Tree?
    How do I decide if two records in Family Tree are about the same person?
    How do I undo a merge in Family Tree?

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