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In Microsoft Teams, you can chat and collaborate with users of other organizations in two different ways.
You can read more about the differences here: Collaborate with people outside your organization.
Chatting with external users
Creating a chat with external users works the same way as with internal users. Just enter the email address of the external contact when creating a chat.
Please note, that we will not be able to check in advance, if a chat with the user will be able. There are a few requirements for this to work (see below).
Check if an external user is available trough Teams chat
There are a few requirements for an external chat to work:
The external contact needs to have a Microsoft Teams account for their email address
The organization of the external contact needs to allow chats with your organization
Your organization needs to allow chats with the external organization
To check if this is possible, you open a new chat in Microsoft Teams and enter the email address of the contact.
After clicking “Search […] externally” it will show you one of two messages:
This error indicates that the user has no Teams account for this email address at all.
This error indicates that your or the external users organization has restricted external chats. See below for help on this.
Allowing external chats
Please check the following help article by Microsoft on how to configure external access correctly. This will need the help of an Office administrator in both organizations: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/manage-external-access
Chatting with guest users
Chatting with guest users is currently not supported, due to limitations on the Microsoft Teams side.
You can work around this limitation by creating the chat first and then adding the guest user afterwards in Microsoft Teams. It’s a known bug on Microsoft side and we hope to be able to support this soon.