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Interlibrary Loan Services

Interlibrary Loan Code for Nebraska


This code is a voluntary agreement adopted by the Nebraska Library Association on October 25, 1990, to govern lending in Nebraska. It is intended to address general policies rather than specific procedures, given the changing nature of technologies and techniques. The code is further intended as a complement, not an impediment, to other resource sharing agreements.

Interlibrary loan is recognized as a basic library service for all ages and interests, and should be publicized as such to all members of the library's clientele. Lending between libraries is not sanctioned as a substitute for local collection development, however, except where cooperative collection agreements are in place.

Any library that is able to complete its borrowing request with full bibliographic information and verification, and can locate potential lenders is unrestricted by this code in forwarding that request to the potential lender(s) of its choice. Libraries that further request policy exceptions or special handling, such as telefacsimile delivery, may do so as needed by their users. Libraries are encouraged to be as generous as possible in accommodating special requests.

Finally, this code holds that interlibrary loan is: 1) in the public interest, and 2) dependent for its success on the mutual cooperation of those involved. Under the terms of this agreement, therefore, libraries should lend as well as borrow materials, with due regard to the difficulty of identifying potential lenders.

I. Definition

An interlibrary loan is a transaction in which library material, or a copy of the material, is made available by one library to another upon request. The phrase "library materials" is understood to include all formats.

II. Purpose

The purpose of the interlibrary loan as defined in this code is to obtain library material not available in the local library.

III. Scope

Under the terms of this agreement, it is permissible to request on interlibrary loan any type of library material which the lending library is willing and able to lend.

IV. Responsibilities of Borrowing Libraries

A. Each library should provide the resources to meet the ordinary needs and interests of its primary clientele. Material requested from another library under this code should generally be limited to those items that do not conform to the library's collection development policy or for which there is no recurring demand. Borrowing libraries are encouraged to review requests on a regular basis to determine future collection requirements.

B. Borrowing libraries should make every effort to exhaust their own resources before pursuing interlibrary loans.

C. The interlibrary loan staff of each library should be familiar with, and use, relevant manuals and reference sources. Any library without access to the major bibliographic location verification, and procedure tools may request assistance from their resource library or the Nebraska Library Commission.

D. Standard interlibrary loan forms/formats should be used for all requests, regardless of the means of transmission. Requests may be transmitted via electronic or traditional mail, telefacsimile, telephone, or any other means acceptable to the potential lender(s).

E. Each library should inform its users of the purpose of the interlibrary loan and of the library's interlibrary loan borrowing policy. Any member of the borrowing library's clientele should be eligible for interlibrary loan.

F. The borrowing library is responsible for compliance with the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. CODE) and its accompanying guidelines, and should inform its users of the applicable portions of the law. An indication of compliance must be provided with all photocopying requests.

G. Both the bibliographic citation and location of the requested material should be described as completely and accurately as possible following accepted bibliographic practices. If either their citation or the location cannot be verified, libraries should so indicate in their request and include information about the original source of citation. Any library needing assistance with verification, locations and/or procedures may enlist the aid of their resource library or the Nebraska Library Commission. If verification is disregarded, or the bibliographic data are incorrect, and unless special agreement otherwise provides, the lending library may return the request unfilled without special effort to identify the reference.

H. Lenders should be chosen equitably so as not to place the undue demand on a limited number of suppliers. Libraries should attempt to spread their borrowing requests across a large number of libraries, with due consideration given to accepted practice or consortia agreements.

I. The safety of borrowed materials is the responsibility of the borrowing library from the time the material leaves the lending library until it arrives back at the lending library. The borrowing library is responsible of packaging the material so as to ensure its return in good condition. If damage or loss occurs, the borrowing library must meet all costs of repair or replacement with the preferences of the lending library.

All requests and shipments shall be conspicuously labeled "Interlibrary Loan" on the outside of the package. Inside the package, the loaned material itself must be clearly identified. Such information should include the names of the borrowing and lending libraries, the ILL control number or any other identifying number appearing on the original request, and the due date.

J. The borrowing library and its users must comply with the conditions of loan established by the lending library. Unless specifically forbidden by the lending library, copying by the borrowing library is permitted provided that is in accordance with the copyright law and no damage to the original material would result.

K. The borrowing library should encourage library users to travel to other libraries for on-site access to material when extensive use of a collection is required or when the nature of the material makes lending inadvisable. The borrowing library should assist the user in making the necessary arrangement.

V. Responsibilities of Lending Libraries

A. The decision to loan material, or to accommodate policy exceptions and special handling, is at the discretion of the lending library. Each library is encouraged, however, to interpret as generously as possible its own lending policy with due consideration to the interests of its primary clientele.

B. Lending libraries are encouraged to establish uniform policies regarding issues such as charges, page limits and renewals that conform to generally accepted practice or consortia agreements.

C. Each Nebraska library should formulate an ILL policy statement. This statement should be available at the library upon request and a copy should be forwarded to the Nebraska Library Commission. The Nebraska Library Commission will maintain a file of all interlibrary loan policy statements which become available to the Commission from libraries outside the state, as well as from Nebraska libraries. In addition, the Commission will produce an interlibrary loan directory of Nebraska.

D. The lending library should process requests promptly, and notify borrowers as soon as possible if unable to supply the material. Conditions of loan should be stated clearly and material should be packaged carefully. The lending library should notify the borrowing library when unable to fill a request. Stating the reason for not filling the request is optional unless:

1. The borrower has not indicated copyright compliance;
2. The item cannot be located as cited; or
3. The borrower must meet certain conditions for the loan.

E. All requests and shipments shall be conspicuously labeled "Interlibrary Loan" on the outside of the package. Inside the packaging, the loaned material itself must be clearly identified. Such information should include the names of the borrowing and lending libraries, the ILL control number or any other identifying number appearing on the original request, and the due date.

F. Before restricting borrowing privileges to a library, the lending library is responsible for informing the borrowing library of the reason for the restriction or suspension.

VI. Expenses

A. The borrowing library should be prepared to assume any costs charged by the lending library and should attempt to anticipate charges and authorize maximum cost on the initial request. Libraries are encouraged to offer free or low cost interlibrary loans whenever possible.

B. If the charges are more than nominal and not authorized by the borrowing library, the lending library should inform the requesting library and ask for authorization to proceed.

VII. Duration of the Loan

A. The duration of the loan, unless otherwise specified by the lending library, is the period of time the item may remain in the borrowing library disregarding the time spend in transit. The loan period shall be clearly indicated on the interlibrary loan form and on the library material. Borrowing libraries should encourage their users to use material within the time period allowed.

B. Interlibrary loan material should be returned promptly.

C. A renewal request should be sent in time to reach the lending library not later than the due date. If the lending library does not respond, it will be assumed that the renewal, for the same period as the original loan, is granted. Lending libraries are responsible for informing borrowers at the time of the request is filled if an item cannot be renewed. Borrowing libraries should in turn inform their users of renewal restrictions.

D. All material on loan is subject to recall, and the borrowing library should comply.

VII. Violation of the Code

Each library is responsible for maintaining the provisions of this code in good faith.

For more information, contact Information Services Team.