What is a bad ESN?


An ESN is an Electronic Serial Number. An ESN can also be referred to as an "MEID or "IMEI.” It is a unique identifier used by wireless carriers to connect a phone to an account. An ESN will be considered 'bad' if:

  • The phone is still active on the account (receiving calls and text messages, etc...) 
  • The wireless account has an outstanding balance 
  • The phone has been reported lost or stolen

Once your phone is received, the ESN will be checked as part of the inspection process. If the ESN is found to be active or has an unpaid balance due, we'll notify you via email to request that you fix the issue with your wireless carrier. You will have five days to clear the ESN.

If you are unable to clear the ESN, the device will be considered "damaged" and a lower offer will be sent to you. You'll have seven days to accept or decline. (If you decline the new offer, your device will be mailed back to you free of charge.)  Devices with an ESN or IMEI that has been flagged as lost or stolen will not be accepted and no value will be paid.

If you are unsure about your phone's ESN, please contact your wireless provider to find out if it's clear to be activated by a new user. 

Please note: Any attempt to sell a loststolen, or counterfeit device through uSell is a violation of uSell's Terms of Service

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