Person and Relationship Lifecycles
This document is intended to clarify the effects and nuances of creating, deleting, and restoring Person and Relationship entities in the FamilySearch system.
Deleting Persons and Relationships
When a Person or Relationship entity is deleted, FamilySearch maintains a reference to it to enable support for restoring (i.e., "undeleting") it at a later time. A request for a Person or Relationship that has been deleted will result in an "HTTP 410 Gone" status code. View an example of a request for a Person that has been deleted.
Note A request for a person that has been merged results in an "HTTP 301 Moved Permanently" status code. For more information, see the Merging guide and the example request for a Person that has been merged.
Restoring Deleted Persons and Relationships
The Side Effects
The following side effects of deleting and recovering entities should be noted:
- Deleting a person also deletes all relationships that reference that person.
- Recovering a person also recovers any relationships to that person except for those that link to person(s) that are still deleted.
- A relationship cannot be recovered if any person being referenced by the relationship is deleted.