How to solve the CIRCULAR_DEPENDENCY error

Last published at: 2022-02-08 12:55:16 UTC

When using the parent > child hierarchy in Salesforce, you might encounter the CIRCULAR_DEPENDENCY error - "A parent account can't be the child of an account it's already a parent of" when executing a merge. This article will show you how to resolve this issue.


  1. Remove the parent -> child relationship for your account in the manual merge page, by selecting the empty parent-id field.
  2. Remove the parent -> child relationship for all (affected) accounts in Salesforce by (mass) updating them.
  3. Develop a "merge plugin", in which you can execute apex code, which will make sure the parent-id field is emptied before the merge is fired. This is something that has to be developed by yourself.