I have a contact in a generic sObject in apex and while I'm able to easily get detail field values using


I'm not able to get fields off the related parent object, and I'm sure the related field is in memory, based on the debug logs. This returns a runtime error:


with the error

Invalid field Account.MyAccountField__c' for Contact

How do I get a field value off of a parent on a generic sObject?

1 Answer 1


You need getSobject() to traverse relationship "up" in a dynamic way.

sObject acc = [SELECT Owner.Profile.Name FROM Account LIMIT 1];
String profileName = (String) acc.getSobject('Owner').getSobject('Profile').get('Name');

Check all dynamic get* methods in the Sobject instance methods docs.

  • 11
    As an added bonus, you can also use getsObjects() to go the other way down the tree: e.g. List<sObject> so = [Select Id, (Select Id from Contacts) from Account LIMIT 10]; List<Contact> cons = so[0].getSObjects('Contacts'); Jan 22, 2014 at 0:24
  • 10
    In case it helps someone else (I was wondering this): Using the '__r' will work. So if your dynamic code has something like List<sObject> sList = [Select Name, Custom__r.Name from Contact]; it can be addressed with sList[0].getSobject('Custom__r').get('Name'); May 5, 2015 at 13:35
  • 2
    Probably would be worth adding checks for a null parent if you were going to genericize this functionality. I guess in this case though neither parent is nillable.
    – Adrian Larson
    Oct 10, 2017 at 12:49
  • 1
    @Hunt null check works for me, definitely post new question? sObject o = [SELECT Manager.Name FROM User LIMIT 1]; sObject manager = o.getSobject('Manager'); String name = manager != null ? (String) manager.get('Name') : 'Nope'; System.debug(name);. You could also SELECT ManagerId and check that... for related lists - I think list will always be there (never null value) but it's perfectly OK for it to be isEmpty().
    – eyescream
    Jan 23, 2020 at 6:26
  • 2
    For null checks, using the save navigation operator should do the trick: developer.salesforce.com/docs/atlas.en-us.apexcode.meta/… Jul 22, 2021 at 21:38

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