Delete a user

When users leave your organization, you might want to delete their Google Apps user accounts. Deleting a user's account deletes the user's Google Apps data (including their Gmail messages and calendar data) and blocks the user from accessing your organization's Google Apps services, including Drive files they own. You can choose to delete the user's Drive files or transfer them to another user.

Trying to resolve a conflicting account? Don't delete someone's user account to address a conflicting account problem if that person actively uses Google Apps services for mail, calendar, and other core services. Instead, see how to resolve a conflicting account.

Important: Before you delete a user's account
  • Transfer ownership of shared calendars. If the user created a shared calendar that you'd like someone else to now manage, give the other user permission to "Make changes AND manage sharing" on the shared calendar.
  • Remove an administrator from Postini services. If Postini services are enabled for your account and the user you want to delete is an administrator, you must first remove the user from the list of administrators in the Postini Services console. For details, see transferring Postini administration rights to a different user.
You might also consider other ways to extract data before deleting a user's account.
What happens to a deleted user's data?
  • Mail. All messages in the user's account are deleted after five days.
  • Calendar. The user's primary calendar is deleted after five days. Shared calendars created by the user aren't deleted, but for another user to continue managing the shared calendar, you need to give the other user permission to "Make changes AND manage sharing" on the shared calendar.
  • Drive files. Drive files the user owns are deleted after five days unless you transfer those files when you delete the user as described below.
  • Sites pages. Site pages created by the user are not deleted. However as administrator, you can remove the sites.
  • Non-core services. Content in the user's non-core services (such as YouTube and Picasa Web Albums) is deleted.
How to delete a user
  1. Sign in to the Google Admin console.
  2. Click Users.
  3. To delete a single user, click Settings in the user list for the user you want to change and choose Delete.

    Or from the user's account page, click Settings in the corner of the user's profile and choose Delete.

  4. To delete multiple users, click the images next to the users' names you want to delete.
  5. Click Settings in the top corner and choose Delete users.
  6. Optionally, indicate if you want to transfer ownership of Drive files the user owns. You can choose to transfer all files they own or only shared files they own.
    If you delete the user without transferring the user’s files, Google deletes the files the user owned within five days.
    Note the following:
    • The transfer includes all files of all types, not just Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and so forth.
    • If you restore a deleted user whose files you transferred, the Admin console restores the user as a suspended user.
    • When you restore deleted users after transferring the ownership of their files to other users, the restored users do not automatically reacquire ownership of their old files. Instead, they can only edit the files they used to own.
  7. When prompted, confirm that you want to delete the user.
  8. If necessary, delete the user from your Gmail contacts list.

When the deletion and transfer are complete, Google emails the primary and secondary domain contacts defined in Company Profile | Profile | Contact information.

Restoring a deleted account. You can restore a recently deleted account for up to five days. After this period, deleted accounts can't be recovered.