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Troubleshoot your device issues
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Community Support

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2.7K Messages

Friday, November 24th, 2017 1:25 PM

AT&T Device Unlock Help - Solutions & FAQS

​Learn what you need to do to unlock your device and the requirements ​

Notice

If you are not the original owner of the device​ and are denied a device unlock, you will need to reach out to the original seller/ owner. AT&T is unable to assist. Read below for more information. 

To unlock your device, you need the right keys. By keys I mean, device eligibility. Unlocking your phone seems cut and dry but there are requirements it must meet first.  Below you learn which set of keys you'll need before your device can be unlocked. You'll also find information about why your request may have been denied (​​scroll toward the bottom of the page​​)​​.​

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​How to request a device unlock​

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​Check the status of your request​

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  1. ​Go to our ​​Device Unlock portal​​.​​ ​
  2. ​Select ​​Yes​​ if you are an AT&T Customer, ​​No​​ if you are ​​not an AT&T customer​​. ​​ ​
  3. ​Enter your telephone # if ​​you are​​ ​​an AT&T Customer​​. Enter your IMEI if you ​​are a non-AT&T Customer, Email confirmation will also be required.​​ ​
  4. ​Follow the prompts. ​
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  1. ​Click the link in your *Text message to check your status. If you are a **non-AT&T customer, click the link in your Email follow steps 2-4.​​ ​
  2. ​Go to our ​​Status Portal​​.​​ ​
  3. ​ Enter your IMEI Number & Request Number.​​ ​
  4. ​Follow the prompts.​
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​*AT&T customers will receive a unique Text that can be used to check the status of your unlock request without the need of entering your IMEI Number or Request Number.​

​**Non-AT&T customers will receive an email and must follow steps 2-4 above.​

​Things to know:​

  • ​The device unlock process usually takes minutes and we will let you know when your request is complete. For non-AT&T customers If prompted, please confirm your request in the email we send you.​
  • ​AT&T cannot unlock devices from other wireless carriers.​
  • ​Business customers can submit an unlock request through the same ​​Device Unlock portal​​.​
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​Email Confirmation ​

​In some instances, you may need to confirm an unlock request via email. In some instances, the email is routed to your primary email folder, in others, it may have been routed to spam. So, check spam and trash to make sure the email did not go there. ​

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​Website Troubleshooting​

​If you have an issue with the site, delete cache, cookies, and restart your browser. In some instances, you may need to use another browser. ​

​General Requirements for All Unlock Requests​

  • ​The device must be designed for use on, and locked to, the AT&T wireless network.​
  • ​A device bought at full price must wait 60 days from that purchase date to be eligible to unlock (Prepaid requires 6 months of service & Postpaid is 60 days from the date of purchase if paid in full)
  • ​It must not be reported lost or stolen​​.​
  • ​It’s not associated with fraudulent activity​​.​
  • All the device’s service commitments and installment plans are completed, and all early termination fees are paid in full.​
  • ​The device is not currently active on a different AT&T customer’s account.​​ ​
  • ​If you performed an early upgrade, you must wait the 14-day buyer’s remorse period before you can request to unlock your previous device.​​ ​
  • ​Visit our Unlock Support page for the ​​full requirement list​​. ​
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​ ​​eBay & Non-AT&T Purchases​
​Before purchasing a device from a non-AT&T authorized dealer or sites like eBay, make sure the seller performs the unlock request. In some instances, you will have to contact the seller to perform the request. If the device was purchased by another provider, they should have online resources to unlock the device. If you purchase the device and it is NOT unlocked AT&T will not be able to unlock the device.​​ ​​ ​

​​​Postpaid Customers​
  • ​ ​​If your device was purchased on an installment plan, your account must be active for at least 60 days, with no past due or unpaid balance.​ ​

​AT&T Prepaid​

  • ​ ​​The device must be active for at least six months of paid service.​
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​ ​​Non-AT&T Mobility Customers​
  • ​You currently do not or you’ve never had an AT&T wireless account and you meet the General Requirements for unlock requests.​ ​
​Deployed Military Personnel (Current AT&T Customers Only)​
  • Current AT&T customers who are active and deployed military personnel, and have provided deployment verification, need to meet all the General Requirements, except those related to the device's service commitments, installment plans and early termination fees.​​ ​
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​Have you submitted an unlock request that has been denied and you are unsure why?​

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​Chat with us​​ so we can look at your request further. (Scroll down to find the chat option)​

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​Important:​

​ ​​AT&T reserves the right to deny any unlock request that it concludes would result in an abuse of this policy or is part of an effort to defraud AT&T or its customers. AT&T further reserves the right to alter this unlocking policy at its discretion without advance notice.​
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​ChrisZ, AT&T Community Specialist​

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AT&T Help

Need help with an account specific question?  Post a new question here on the forums by clicking the "Ask a Question" button.
For additional support, please visit us at our AT&T services hub.

*I am an AT&T employee, and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.

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1 Attachment

Scholar

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335 Messages

6 years ago

you are not the original owner of that phone. The agreement is between att and the customer who originally owns the phone. what if the original owner didnt pay the phone? what if one of the phone is included in fraudulent activities? what if there's an outstanding balance on that? ATT is doing business, sad to say but business is business.

Mentor

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50 Messages

6 years ago

Well business is business and its certainly not good for business if your limiting the resale and value of the devices you sell. Customers are less likely to upgrade if they cannot recoup a decent market value of the phone. Newer phones = happier customers. Att is also making it more expensive for customers to lease their phone, since unlocked phones have a higher resale value the trade-ins arent worth as much. There is no motivation on ATTs part to not unlock phones that have a clean IMEI. ATT wireless is just a company people will put up with untill one of the big tech giants with enough cash on hand makes a strong enough product launch to put a sudden giant dent in their market share. Locking phones short term could provide them with a benifet i guess, long term it just hurts their brand image and customer satisfaction scores. Two things which are incredibly hard to recoupe once they’ve been lost. At that point its easier to just rebrand the entire company.

ACE - Expert

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23.9K Messages

6 years ago


@JoeJohn wrote:

Well business is business and its certainly not good for business if your limiting the resale and value of the devices you sell. Customers are less likely to upgrade if they cannot recoup a decent market value of the phone. Newer phones = happier customers. Att is also making it more expensive for customers to lease their phone, since unlocked phones have a higher resale value the trade-ins arent worth as much. There is no motivation on ATTs part to not unlock phones that have a clean IMEI. ATT wireless is just a company people will put up with untill one of the big tech giants with enough cash on hand makes a strong enough product launch to put a sudden giant dent in their market share. Locking phones short term could provide them with a benifet i guess, long term it just hurts their brand image and customer satisfaction scores. Two things which are incredibly hard to recoupe once they’ve been lost. At that point its easier to just rebrand the entire company.


Att does not lease phones.....  Sprint does..... ATT Next is a 0% LOAN...

Mentor

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50 Messages

6 years ago

I mean what could lower the satisfaction of consumers more than limiting the use of a device they rightfully paid for and own. Long term the marketing and PR strategy they have to use to keep customers from leaving or boost their image to gain new customers is way more costly than any short term benifet gained from refusing to unlock phones. Just the cost of paying marketing people to review and post on this single thread is way more than any benefit gained of refusing to unlock my phone.

ACE - Expert

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23.9K Messages

6 years ago


@JoeJohn wrote:

I mean what could lower the satisfaction of consumers more than limiting the use of a device they rightfully paid for and own. Long term the marketing and PR strategy they have to use to keep customers from leaving or boost their image to gain new customers is way more costly than any short term benifet gained from refusing to unlock phones. Just the cost of paying marketing people to review and post on this single thread is way more than any benefit gained of refusing to unlock my phone.


I unlocked 4 phones this week and they all went thru in a matter of minutes or hours depending on if its apple or android.  With android taking longer at this point for me...  

Mentor

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50 Messages

6 years ago

@GLIMMERMAN76 I think its super cool you’re unlocking all these phones and probably get paid by at&t. But you certainly aren’t helping them solve improve their customer service issues or product offering. I have no idea what your comments aim to accomplish. Pretending that it works for you doesnt make it work for others, and saying that ATT has bad service so deal with it just gives more power to the countless arguments made by apple and google. If you insert a verizon sim in an att apple phone it even displays a

message stating its not apples fault the provider who sold the phone is lame.

ACE - Expert

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23.9K Messages

6 years ago

You stick a Verizon sim in a iPhone 7 or 8 it's not going to work on verizon anyway.  They have no CDMA radios.

ACE - Expert

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23.9K Messages

6 years ago

I also don't work for att.  My point is your not a customer you are a 3rd party.  

Tutor

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2 Messages

6 years ago

My phone is not under contract and has been paid for since April of last year. I get an error saying I still owe on the phone so they can’t  unlock it. When they opened a case on one of the three calls I made, they send me an email saying they couldn’t process my request becaue my pin couldn’t be validated, but they validated it on the phone multiple times! This is so ridiculous! Someone please help me! 

Mentor

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50 Messages

6 years ago

That completely depends if you buy a model that is limited in the bands or networks it supports. Verizon stopped locking phones because the company has some competence and common sense among its management. 

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