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Person number of spouse (from programming)


SPLOC is a 2-digit numeric variable.

0: No spouse or partner assigned


SPLOC is a constructed variable that indicates whether the person's spouse or partner lived in the same household and, if so, gives the person number (PERNUM) of the spouse/partner. The method by which probable spouse-spouse links are identified is described in SPRULE.

SPLOC makes it easy for researchers to link the characteristics of (probable) spouses.


NHIS also offers the variable SPOUSEPNUM, which indicates the person number (PX) of every married person's spouse from 2006 and forward. Note that PX must be used with YEAR, HHX, and FMX to uniquely identify members of a household.

SPLOC is the IPUMS NHIS-constructed spouse or partner location variable and refers to PERNUM. Similarly, PERNUM should be used with YEAR, SERIAL, and FAMNUMR to uniquely identify each household member in the data.


Because of variation in the information available for linking spouses, there are slight differences across years. For example, beginning in 1997, MARSTCUR provides information about people living with their unmarried partners. This allows us to form links in 1997 and later that would be invisible in the earlier data; for example if the child of the reference person is living with an unmarried partner in pre-1997 data, s/he would not be listed as married and therefore would not be paired via SPLOC. In 1997 and later, this same person would be listed as "Living with partner" and would be paired via SPLOC.

RELATE in years prior to 1997 referred to the relationship between a person and the family reference person, whereas after 1997 it referred to the relationship to the household reference person (with the relationship to the family reference person being indicated by FAMREL). For all years, SPLOC is assigned within family (FAMNUMR), so the effect of the change in RELATE is minimized.


  • 1963-2018: All persons.


  • 1963-2018


  • No weights are available for this variable. Please refer to SPLOC for more information.