Geni uses the term Birth Surname for what is commonly referred to as "maiden name" in other software. It is intended to be the person's family name at the time of their birth, whether male or female, whether eventually married or not.
You should not enter a person's married family name into the birth surname field. For people who changed their family name later in life (particularly when they married) you should enter their family name at birth ("maiden name") into the birth surname field, and their married family name into the last name field.
For people who never changed their family name, all of the following are acceptable:
- Entering their family name into the birth surname field, and leaving last name blank;
- Entering their family name into the last name field, and leaving birth surname blank;
- Entering their family name into both the birth surname and last name fields