Surveying methods of tracking separated parents
I've been using Understanding Society data to look at parental separation and have been trying to match children with their parents before and after separation. Using the fpid and mpid I have merged the father and mother information (income, age, education etc.) with the child and have assumed that if separation occurs the parent leaving the household gets a new household identifier. Thus if his/her hid is different from the child's hid I assumed that the parents have separated and one of them has left the household. Looking at the results of the data it appears there are 0 individuals tracked in the same year they leave the household, but may (in some cases) appear in later waves. This seems a little strange to me and not what I was expecting. My question is how do you track these individuals? Is it systematically every year or more haphazardly (as the data seems to suggest)? Are they often not captured in the data?
And finally are all members of the new household of the separated parent (i.e. new partners and their children) surveryed as well?