My family is perfect. "Is or are"?

Estou com uma enorme dúvida: Quando digo My family eu uso WORK ou WORKS? "MY FAMILY" seria THEY?

Da mesma forma quando uso, por exemplo: "The Jackson family" uso ou are?
The Jackson Family work at night.
Ou "The Jackson works at night.
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http://www.dictionary.com/e/collective-nouns/ would be a good place to start.

But then, a little grammar aside here. Usually, when considering family as a unit you can use "is", if you talk about it not as a unit them "are".
With words like "everyone" in the sentence use "is"; with "all" in it, it´s time to plural "are".
Verbs with "s" at the end are a sign that the individual speaking/writing tought of it as a unit. With the verb in its pure form, he thought about it as a group constituted by parts, indeed he thought more about the individuals than as a group (generally talking about some action that in which they don´t act in unison.

My family works hard to keep me in the place they expect me to be.
Everyone of my family likes to exercise.

Everyone of my family works so hard for this big day. They knows I and my fiance been working so hard and making sacrifices to make our dream wedding come true.


Here they act in unison, but the speaker thought of it in separate ways, one by one, I mean.
I have had the opportunity to travel and live in China and thanks to it now my family work with my in my personal project

"Watching my family work so hard has been so inspirational, and I think I really got their work ethic." - Chloe Kim
(yes, Chloe thought of them as a group constituted by different elements, so she took it as a case-by-case here).

They help my family work together so that we can overcome our challenges.
(Ditto, with that one).

Unfortunately all of my family work full time jobs and we are unable to be with her all the time.
(it´s not difficult to guess that the thought is not about a family as a unit, by the verb used "WORK" -no ending S)
The the reasoning here is also that a family has separate jobs (more often than not), so it´s about a group but with separate cases here.

There are certain examples in which context would help, so you must follow the general standard (it works similiar to fixed expressions), so you will say:
My family is my life. (on the safe side, don´t use "are my life".)
My family are always fighting among themselves. (not among oneself, for instance.)

Anyway, it gets back to the rule, since with the first sentence you think of it "as a unit" and with the second you can clearly see that it´s about "a group" in which there are several people with different views and ways (so they don´t act as a unit here). Anyway "among themselves" helped to crack the puzzle, in such case without that bit it would really sound awkward.

Here one can see that more than one case and with different people, so after the first sentence we could say that "they are satisfied with the treatment given to them.":
My family are always treated very well by receptionists and very good doctors. Nurses always very helpful.
E se for The Jackson...
Seria: The Jackson work hard OU The Jackson works hard?
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The Jacksons works hard, you are talking about all members of the family working, not necessarily as a unit.
Think of a family coming to a get-togheter on Sunday, so you would say "the Jacksons are reunited", the Web (BBC) offer two instances:
The Jacksons reunite for US tour.
The remaining members of The Jacksons have reunited to perform for the first time in 28 years.


So, the writer/journalist think of them as group in which all of them perform, This is the case with names of Family when we use "the".
In the sentence "keep up with the Joneses" you are talking about all of them as well, not exactly one or other, that´s why it´s difficult to keep up, one of them may be rich and extravagant! :-)

So "the Jacksons work hard", on the other hand "the Jackson family is arguably one of the most famous families in entertainment."
So, there´s a way to use IS if you wish, by adding "family", which brought us to the initial family topic, see? ;-)