I am getting the error "portal users cannot own partner accounts" when trying to create a new contact through our community site.

I have set up a contact list in our Communities site (Napili theme), and I was hoping that we could allow our customers to keep their own account contacts up to date. So I set up a contact list and set the object permissions to allow create and edit on contacts. I set up a sharing set to allow allow portal users read and write records with the same account so far looking pretty good.

Users can see and edit all the contacts in their parent account, and there is even a New button. When I am logged in as one of these portal users, I can edit records just fine, but when I click new, and enter all the data and click save I get the error message "portal users cannot own partner accounts"

What can I do to get this to work? Thanks!

Edit: The user type of the user I am trying to do this with is "High Volume Portal" and the licence type is "Customer Community Login"

  • Are there any triggers running to create users or accounts in your instance ? Oct 21, 2016 at 18:44
  • There are no triggers. Oct 21, 2016 at 18:50
  • One thing I had thought of as maybe a way to work around was to set the owner to normal salesforce user in a before insert trigger. I think I might test this to see if it is viable. Although I am curious if maybe there is something I can do in the configuration to make this work. Oct 21, 2016 at 18:52
  • Follow up on the trigger solution. It seems to be working. I still would like to know if there is a better solution. Otherwise I may put this as the answer. Oct 21, 2016 at 19:13

1 Answer 1


High Volume Customer Portal users cannot own Account records which will include your Customer Community Login users. They can own Contact records.

I suspect this may be a bug in the Napili template as there seemed to be an issue using the old Visualforce plus tags template which allowed a Case to be created from the new button on a related list on the Accounts page, but not from the new button on the case page as it would not allow the Account name to be populated onto the case. I dealt with that in a previous Q&A.

Salesforce help here states

High-volume portal users can’t own accounts.

Other restrictions

High-volume portal users can’t access standard Account and Contact detail pages. However, you can create a custom solution, using tools like Visualforce or the API, where they can access those records.

  • Thanks for your reply. I did see that page, and I did see the note about not being able to own accounts. Which is the weird thing about the error, as far as I know I am not creating or trying to set ownership on an account. It is saving a contact record which is triggering the error. I guess the community portal counts as a custom solution as far as Salesforce is concerned for accessing the records themselves, as reading and updating work perfectly. Oct 21, 2016 at 19:32
  • if the problem is with the New button on the Contact page I wonder if a similar scenario to what I found with this earler Q&A applies salesforce.stackexchange.com/questions/142477/…
    – Dave Humm
    Oct 21, 2016 at 20:01
  • It is with the new button in a communities site, the new button is generated from the Record List component. It does not auto select the Account for the Contact which is unfortunate, the lookup does work however and the only option they can find is there own account because of the sharing set. I think maybe this is just a bad error message/documentation on the part of salesforce. Maybe it should say High-volume portal users can’t own accounts or contacts. Oct 21, 2016 at 20:10
  • 1
    I've just been trying a test in a community on a Dev org and found community members on Customer Communities can own a contact, that was on a different template so I'm trying to set up one in Napili to see if that is different.
    – Dave Humm
    Oct 21, 2016 at 20:12
  • That is my suspicion too. If you can confirm and put that in as the answer I will mark it as correct. Thank you so much for your help! Oct 21, 2016 at 20:17

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