My brother died a few months ago. I requested from Google, via an online form, the email data of my brother. Now they have replied and told that they need a court order from US to proceed further. Their reply contained little information. (I received a unfilled form in PDF.)

I live in India and belong to a lower middle class family. Foreign word means something "non existing" to my family. So we can't go to United States.

How should I further proceed? Is there any online way to sort out things?

  • Two questions: Did your brother have a will? Do you have explicit legal ownership of the data? In the US, this would most commonly be granted by a probate court, or prior joint ownership, the latter of which doesn't sound like you have. But, according to about 5 minutes of research, in India, probate is apparently run according to religious rules? Or different rules for different religons? – sharur Dec 23 '19 at 5:43

You should contact the U.S. State Department via your local U.S. consulate or Embassy. Part of any diplomatic mission will be assisting in legal hurdles for international issues. If you can provide your region and include major cities, it shouldn't be hard to find the nearest U.S. Foreign-Mission to you, and you likely do not need to physically go there for initial service. Most physically large nations will have a few consulates that are scattered throughout the nation, while Embassies typically tend to be in the capital city and provide more services (Consulates will typically have services for general public, including immigration, passport, and legal services. Embassies have these services plus diplomatic services).

Alternatively, both India and the United States are common law jurisdictions and many U.S. tech companies have offices and operations in India (over in the U.S., the Indian Tech Support guy is a sterotype in media, as many tech firms used/have used call centers in India for tech support/ help lines. Google almost certainly has a legal pressence in India that would fall under Indian court systems' jurisidiction and it is a market they would be trying to court favor with (having a 7th of the world's population in the billions, Google is gonna want to go for market dominance in India).

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  • You can find the consulates yourself by searching the website state.gov. – hszmv Nov 22 '19 at 13:43
  • I just checked US Embassy is in New Delhi. Not very far. But US consulates are in South Delhi. Very far from me. I read somewhere that Embassy alao provides services that conaulate does. Going to Embassy would help? – Vikas Nov 22 '19 at 16:20
  • @GeorgeWhite generally embassies that provide consular services have a "consular section" for that purpose. But not all embassies have a consular section. For example, the US mission to the Netherlands handles visa and passport applications only at the consulate general in Amsterdam. These services are not available at the embassy in The Hague. I don't know whether a similar situation exists in India. – phoog Nov 23 '19 at 16:04

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