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david_r6's profile

Contributor

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3 Messages

Sat, Jan 24, 2015 11:13 PM

Trying to unlock my old 5c - VERY FRUSTRATING

I bought an iPhone 5 along with a contract through ATT in 2011. Unfortunately, after a couple years I dropped it and it died just close to my contract renewal but not quite there so I had to buy a 5c on Craigslist. My contract finally expired this month and I upgraded to a 6. All is good so far... however, I would like to now unlock my 5c so that I can give it to my wife who is on Tmobile. I made the unlock request online and it was denied so I called and after about an hour it was determined that the 5c is ineligible to unlock because the original owner's number is unknown and thus they can not determine that it was stolen.  Keep in mind that I used this phone with my own ATT account for many months and never has it been reported stolen. I had no problems getting it activated to use it as an ATT customer. Now that I want to unlock it for use through another carrier all of a sudden the stolen thing is a concern. So the phone is practically an iPod unless I activate it with ATT. How is this fair? It's very hard for me to understand that after being such a long term customer, I have to be left hanging this way.

 

I'd like to escallte this to someone who can actually help me

 

Responses

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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83.5K Messages

6 y ago

Unfortunately, I don't think anything can be done.
A carrier lock doesn't prevent it from being used on that carrier. But without the original owners information it can't be unlocked.

This is a risk you take when buying a used phone that has not already been carrier unlocked.

It may not be stolen. But it may have been sold, without its contract being complete by the former owner.
Your best bet is to sell it to an AT&T customer and buy a new phone that is either sim free and carrier unlocked, or a t-mobile phone.

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Contributor

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3 Messages

6 y ago


@lizdance40 wrote:
Unfortunately, I don't think anything can be done.
A carrier lock doesn't prevent it from being used on that carrier. But without the original owners information it can't be unlocked.

This is a risk you take when buying a used phone that has not already been carrier unlocked.

It may not be stolen. But it may have been sold, without its contract being complete by the former owner.
Your best bet is to sell it to an AT&T customer and buy a new phone that is either sim free and carrier unlocked, or a t-mobile phone.

If it was sold before it's contract was up, why then would I be allowed to activate it and use it for so long?

 

 

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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83.5K Messages

6 y ago

The contract is on the line, not the phone itself.
If a customer leaves a carrier without paying early termination fees, the only recourse the carrier has is to refuse to unlock the devices associated with the account.

In your case they can't verify this one way or the other, so they won't unlock the phone.

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Contributor

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3 Messages

6 y ago

Ok, let's just say that the original owner has indeed bailed on ATT w/o paying the early term fee or he simply upgraded and is still with ATT, either way he is no longer using the phone on his account because I now own it. Why can't ATT stop me from activating even if it's on their network if the original owner's history warranted a block?

 

The problem here is that so long as I keep the phone on ATT everything is ok regardless of the previous owner's account status but if I want to use the phone on another carrier...unlocking is denied.

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

 • 

83.5K Messages

6 y ago

"Why can't ATT stop me from activating even if it's on their network if the original owner's history warranted a block?"
It isn't "blocked".
It can't be determined if the previous owner completed their contract with AT&T.

"The problem here is that so long as I keep the phone on ATT everything is ok regardless of the previous owner's account status but if I want to use the phone on another carrier...unlocking is denied."
As it stands now, correct. You can try going through customer service, but it is unlikely they will do anything more for you. You have nothing to lose by trying.

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Community Support

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15.2K Messages

6 y ago

Hey @david_r6

 

I’d be happy to help with your unlock! This sounds like there may be a mixup going on somewhere along the line. I’d be happy to help look into this for you. Please send me a Private Message with the following information and we’ll get this sorted out!

 

  • Cell and/or account number
  • Device IMEI (Settings>General>About)
  • Date purchased
  • Full name
  • Email address

 

If this helps, please mark this answer as an accepted solution!

 

Thanks,

Charise

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