What do I do if my Instagram Account has been Disabled?

EPGD Law Intellectual Property Law

Instagram reserves the right to disable accounts that it believes violate their Community Guidelines or Terms of Use without warning. Accounts that have been determined to be in repeated violation may be permanently removed.  So, what exactly are Instagram’s community standards and terms of use?

Community Guidelines and Terms of Use

Instagram’s community guidelines encompass a wide range of issues from respecting intellectual property rights, not sharing images containing pornography or other certain types of nudity, fostering meaningful and genuine interactions, and respecting other users of the social media platform.  One notable guideline is simply stated as “follow the law.”  Under this umbrella are examples such as not using the platform to show support for terrorism, organized, crime, or hate groups; offering sexual services; and buying and selling controlled goods such as firearms, tobacco, or alcohol.

While these all seem like reasonable guidelines, it is not uncommon for users’ accounts to be disabled without any indication as to why that action was taken. What should you do when your account has been disabled for no apparent reason?  Your first step should be filing an appeal with Instagram.

Instagram released a new appeals process in 2020 as part of Safer Internet Day on February 21.  Under the new process, users whose accounts have been disabled and have received a notification that their account will be deleted in 30 days, can file an appeal within the 30 days to have the decision to disable and delete that user’s account reviewed. This can be done by attempting to login to the platform and selecting “Request Review” when prompted.

Some users have reported having their accounts reinstated after being disabled due to copyright or trademark infringement allegations by uploading business documents showing that they are the owners of the businesses that they promote through the app.  However, while Instagram provides a review process, there is no guarantee that your account will be reinstated.  Instagram’s terms of use provide it with broad discretion in determining to disable or delete user accounts.  For example, as part of their Terms of Use, Instagram states the following:

“We can remove any content or information you share on the Service if we believe that it violates these Terms of Use, our policies (including our Instagram Community Guidelines), or we are permitted or required to do so by law. We can refuse to provide or stop providing all or part of the Service to you (including terminating or disabling your account) immediately to protect our community or services, or if you create risk or legal exposure for us, violate these Terms of Use or our policies (including our Instagram Community Guidelines), if you repeatedly infringe other people’s intellectual property rights, or where we are permitted or required to do so by law.

Thus, while Instagram provides Community Guidelines and Terms of Use for its users to follow and adhere to, Instagram has broad discretion in determining when a violation warranting disabling or deleting an account has taken place.  Instagram need only believe that your account is in violation of its terms or guidelines for such action to be taken.  While Instagram provides an avenue to its users to review and appeal decisions to disable or delete user accounts, there is no guarantee that the matter will be resolved successfully.  In fact, there is no guarantee that the user will even be able to obtain any more information on the issue or that the user will ever be provided the opportunity to respond to the alleged violation.

Unfortunately EPGD Business Law cannot reactivate your Instagram account. Please reach out to Instagram directly.

EPGD Business Law is located in beautiful Coral Gables, West Palm Beach and historic Washington D.C. Call us at (786) 837-6787, or contact us through the website to schedule a consultation.

*Disclaimer: this blog post is not intended to be legal advice. We highly recommend speaking to an attorney if you have any legal concerns. Contacting us through our website does not establish an attorney-client relationship.*

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Silvino Diaz

Silvino E. Diaz’s practice ranges from Civil and Commercial Litigation to Entertainment and Intellectual Property Law. Silvino has earned a reputation as one of Puerto Rico’s foremost advocates for independent musicians and artists. As a result of his sustained commitment to creative industries, he was named Professor of Intellectual Property Law at Atlantic University College (Guaynabo, PR) – the Caribbean’s leading digital arts institution – where he spearheaded the “Introduction to IP” course for both the graduate and undergraduate programs, and was appointed by the Office of the President to develop an Intellectual Property graduate curriculum, where he served until moving to Miami in 2017. He is the founder of the service known as Starving Artists, where he offers innovative business and legal counsel for artists and creatives.


*The following comments are not intended to be treated as legal advice. The answer to your question is limited to the basic facts presented. Additional details may heavily alter our assessment and change the answer provided. For a more thorough review of your question please contact our office for a consultation.

9 Responses

  1. Hi,

    thanks for this interesting article ! I have had my account disabled by Instagram for 2 weeks now and although I wrote multiple times to appeal the decision, I still haven’t heard back from them. I try every day to write to them but there is no support. What can I do since losing all my memories since 2013 and contacts isn’t an option? Can I open a legal case for them so they can at least tell me what was wrong with my account or activity and try to reinstate it ?

    Thanks !

    1. Hi Antoine, we are sorry to hear about your frustration. To discuss this further, kindly call our office at (786) 837-6787 to schedule a complimentary consultation. We are at your convenience.

  2. My account was disabled for 30 days in June 2021. I have appealed and written multiple emails, an yet I haven’t heard back from anyone! Is there anyway to legally file a complaint or case against this? I would like to know what I said wrong and why it was wrong, being as though my comment was not bullying or hurtful or harmful in anyway. What I stated was a right. Why can’t I get in contact with anyone!? I have so many memories on my IG and the fact that I cannot access my photos or saved memories/story post is devastating. Help!

    1. Hi Kiera, we sympathize with your situation. To discuss this further, please call our office at (786) 837-6787 to schedule a complimentary consultation. We are at your convenience.

  3. I’m going through the exact same thing. It’s been 3 months for me an still no reply’s. I’ve appealed a few times and even sent out multiples emails and nothing, nadda! No reply’s nothing. I have no clue what to do but I’m interested in legally pursuing this!

  4. Been fighting my case for about 4-5 months now my instagram account had been disabled since April 27th 2021 someone wrong reported me with the intention to purposely ruin me I’ve had instagram for years now about 2016 and never had such a thing happen b4, I didn’t think this process would be so exhausting I’ve done everything in my power to get my account back send apoeal forms coded emails to internal team, talk to representatives at Facebook over phone thru Facebook concierge phone service but nothing has help reactivate my account, I haven’t gotten word about my account but I’ve been very patient and starting to lose hope it may not a obtainable anymore, anyone dealing with this situation i feel for you for i also have Lost contact with family members and close friends that like who I love the most, tons of memories and content lost that I’ve put together over the years, if anyone sees this reach out to me @2253234204 new instagram Tlandry99 please help

    1. Hi Thomas, we are sorry to hear about your ongoing frustration. To discuss this further, please call our office at (786) 837-6787 to schedule a complimentary consultation. We are at your convenience.

  5. Hi my name is Natasha Howell and my instagram account @natty.ann_ has been disabled with no explanation i am so lost and confused and i need your help my instagram is my livelihood and it helps me from depression and now i am very sad it also helps my online business and now everything is slow because my account has been disabled. i promise you i did not violate any instagram terms please to look into my instagram and get it back please I really need my account back I can verify that it is my account please respond and help me please. thank you

    1. Hi Natasha, we are sorry to hear about your frustration. To discuss this further, please call our office at (786) 837-6787 to schedule a complimentary consultation. We are at your convenience.

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