How to recall an email in Outlook?

Eray Eliaçik
May 6, 2023
Updated • May 4, 2023
Microsoft, Tutorials

Have you ever sent an email that you regretted right after hitting the send button? Maybe you forgot to attach a file, made a typo, or addressed the wrong person. If you use Outlook as your email client, you might be able to recall or replace the message before it reaches the recipient's inbox.

Recalling an email in Outlook means that you try to delete the message from the recipient's mailbox before they open it. Replacing an email in Outlook means that you try to delete the original message and send a new one in its place. However, these actions are not guaranteed to work, and they depend on several factors.

How to recall an email in Outlook?

First, both you and the recipient must have a Microsoft Exchange or Microsoft 365 email account in the same organization. This means that you can't recall or replace an email that you sent to someone outside your company or school or to someone who uses a different email service like Gmail or Yahoo.

Second, the recipient must not have opened the message yet. If they have already read it, either in their inbox or in the reading pane, you won't be able to recall or replace it. Also, if they have rules set up to move or copy messages to other folders, your recall request might fail.

Third, you must act quickly and follow the correct steps to recall or replace an email in Outlook. Here's how to recall an email in Outlook:

  • Go to the Sent Items folder and double-click the message that you want to recall or replace.
  • Select the Message tab and then select Actions > Recall This Message.
  • Choose whether you want to delete unread copies of this message or delete unread copies and replace them with a new message.
  • Select the Tell me if recall succeeds or fails for each recipient check box.
  • Select OK.
  • If you chose to replace the message, edit the original message and select Send.

You will receive a message recall report in your inbox that tells you if your request was successful or not for each recipient. Keep in mind that even if your request succeeds, the recipient might still see your original message briefly before it is deleted.

Recalling or replacing an email in Outlook can be a useful feature if you make a mistake while sending a message. However, it is not always reliable, and it has some limitations. Therefore, it is better to double-check your emails before sending them and avoid sending anything that you might regret later.

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  1. Jqpabc123 said on May 6, 2023 at 9:37 pm

    I avoid this problem by using a 2 minute send delay.

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