Someone who signed up on our website was having trouble logging into her account (made via joining membership). I went to manually reset a login for her, and found out that her email address was already being used for a different contact account we had on file (made from joining a mailing list). To fix this, I deleted the latter contact account, so that only her membership one would exist. I then tried to create a login for this account, but every time I do so it says her email address is already registered still, even though I deleted the previous contact file linked to that email address and can no longer find it. Whenever I search for another contact under her name nothing shows up except for the membership one, which is the one I am trying to edit, so I don't know how to access (and DELETE!) this supposed second account that keeps on interfering with her membership one.
When you check availability, it's actually not looking at CiviCRM - it's looking in Drupal. If you're a coder, you can read the code here. Based on this, it seems like you need to delete the Drupal user, not the CiviCRM contact.
- Go to CiviCRM menu » Hide menu to view the Drupal menu (see screenshot).
- Your Drupal menu may vary based on the installed extension, but you'll likely have a "People" menu:
From here, you can delete the Drupal user. Instructions can be found here.
Note that if you create a new Drupal contact with the same email address as a CiviCRM contact's primary contact, the link between the two will be regenerated! So you should never have to delete the CiviCRM contact in this instance.
It sounds like the "deleted" contact record has gone into trash. You may be able to find it by doing an advanced search in contacts, making sure that you tick the "Search in Trash" box. You can delete it from the trash box.
As an alternative, you could restore the record from the trash box and then merge the two records, thereby ending up with only one.