cPanel Email Forwarder Bounce Message: "550 5.1.1 User doesn't exist"


You receive a bounce reply from cPanel with the error message "550 5.1.1 User doesn't exist". You have an email forwarder in place. The email is delivered to the email address the email forwarder forwards to.

You may receive a bounceback message that is similar to the following:

LMTP error after RCPT TO:<[email protected]>: 550 5.1.1 <[email protected]> 
User doesn't exist: [email protected]


This problem occurs when the email address was previously used as a mailbox and then deleted. cPanel will leave some files in place at the following location (replace values that match the mailbox):


This file path references "[email protected]". As another example, [email protected] would have the file path: /home/username/mail/

Since this path exists but a mailbox does not, a bounceback error is delivered to the sender as the mailbox cannot be found.


To resolve this problem, delete or rename the directory of the former mailbox that is causing the bounceback errors. For example, use the cPanel File Manager to rename the directory. You can also delete the folder entirely.

Example: delete /home/username/mail/

Do not delete the "" directory or any other directory contained within it.


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Date added:
2023-01-16 16:22:23
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