Sunnyvale Public Library

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Interlibrary Loan

Purpose of Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is the process by which libraries request materials from, or supplies materials to, other participating libraries. Interlibrary Loans can come from public and private libraries, as well as colleges and universities, in the county, state, across the United States, and occasionally from a foreign country. There is, however, no requirement that libraries participate. Interlibrary Loan services enhance and extend the resources available to patrons by acknowledging the fact that no single library or library system can acquire materials which meet all the demands of its patrons.  Interlibrary Loan reduces the need for duplication of holdings, and lessens the strain on the Library's budget. The Sunnyvale Public Library provides Interlibrary Loan services to its patrons to fulfill an essential part of the Library's mission to meet the informational and educational needs of the community. If the Sunnyvale Public Library does not have the material that a patron needs within its collection, the  Library Staff will attempt to borrow it from another library via the ILL system.

All Interlibrary Loan services are governed by the American Library Association Interlibrary Loan Code and the Copyright Law (PL 94-553) .

Eligible Borrowers 

All Sunnyvale Public Library or TexShare cardholders with a current account in good standing may request materials through Interlibrary Loan. Patron accounts must be in accordance with current circulation rules. In order to accept and process Interlibrary Loan requests or distribute Interlibrary Loan materials ALL of the following must apply:

    • valid library card
    • must be able to verify current address
    • no overdue fines or fees
    • no overdue or lost materials


Materials That Can Be Borrowed

It is possible to borrow many different types of materials; however, some are much more likely to be sent than others:

    • Items currently owned by the Sunnyvale Public Library that are lost, missing or overdue by more than 6 months
    • Books (older than 12 months)
    • Photocopies of newspaper, magazine or journal articles

The following types of materials are often difficult to obtain:

    • Audiobooks
    • Videocassettes or DVDs
    • Microfilm
    • Genealogy materials
    • Doctoral dissertations and masters theses


Materials That Can Not Be Borrowed

The following types of materials can not be obtained through Interlibrary Loan:

    • Items currently owned by the Sunnyvale Public Library
    • Newly published materials (less than 12 months old)
    • Entire volumes or issues of periodicals
    • Textbooks
    • Reference works
    • Rare, archival or fragile items
    • Original manuscripts
    • Software


Limits And Restrictions

The Library will strictly adhere to conditions set by the lending library for the use of their materials. In rare cases this will require that loaned materials be used in the Library and not checked out for use at home. Patrons will be limited to five active requests at any given time. This includes the Pending, In Process, Shipped, Received and Renewal files. These limits apply to all formats. Materials received through Interlibrary Loan may not be requested again for at least six months. Please note that copyright restrictions may hinder multiple requests for articles within the same publication.

Loan Period

Loan periods are determined by the lending library, which the borrowing library is obliged to honor. Loan guidelines state that an item should be made available to a customer for a minimum of one week. A typical loan period averages two to three weeks. Items which are photocopied are generally yours to keep. Occasionally, a lending library may RECALL their material. If it is checked out to a patron, the Library will notify the customer that the material must be returned immediately. Be sure to pick up your request as soon as you receive notification to have the maximum time possible with the item.

Borrower's Responsibilities

Library users must return materials at the end of the loan period and return recalled materials immediately, so that materials are not absent from the lending library for an unreasonable length of time. Patrons who do not comply with all regulations will lose any further Interlibrary Loan privileges.

Cost And Fees

The Sunnyvale Public Library does not currently charge any fees for Interlibrary Loan services and usually we are able to fill most requests through other non-charging libraries. Some lending libraries, however, will charge for copies, service fees, insurance, mailing & handling and sales tax when applicable. If charges are added, those charges will be passed along to the patron. If an item is lost or damaged, the patron is responsible for the replacement cost, plus any additional processing fees assessed by the lending library. Fines of $1.00 per day per item will be incurred for overdue materials.

Lost, Damaged or Late Materials

Patrons are expected to pay any incurred overdue charges. It is the patron's responsibility to pay replacement costs for any lost or damaged materials, plus any additional processing fees assessed by the lending library. These charges will be reflected on the patron's account and may impact his/her borrowing privileges.

Submitting A Request

All requests must be made in person at the Circulation Desk. The form is available on the Library's web site and can be printed and completed at home to be brought to the Library. All requests should be clearly printed or typed and include accurate and complete bibliographic information. DO NOT USE ABBREVIATIONS. The staff will assist the patron if needed in filling out the form.

How Long Does It Take

The length of time involved in obtaining a loan or photocopy can vary considerably. We have no control over how quickly the lending libraries will act on requests they receive. The location of the lending library and mail delays will effect delivery times. Also, if your request has to go to several libraries before one will agree to lend the item, that will of course take more time. However, most materials can be obtained within two weeks to two months after your request is submitted. Be sure to submit requests well in advance of your need of them. If we are unable to fulfill your request, you will receive notification of the unfilled status.

Notification

Information regarding the arrival of items, approval or disapproval of renewal requests, overdues and recalls, unfilled requests, and any other pertinent matters will be communicated to the patron by phone, email, or surface mail as requested.

How To Cancel A Request

Contact library staff to cancel an Interlibrary Loan request. If a request in progress is canceled, fees may still be charged.

Checking Out ILL Materials

You must present your library card in order to pick up Interlibrary Loan materials. Interlibrary Loan materials will be held behind the Circulation Desk at the entrance to the Library, not on the regular hold shelf. You will have five days to pick up your items before they will be sent back to the lending library.

Renewals

Renewals are at the sole discretion of the lending library and cannot be guaranteed. If more time is needed, the staff will attempt to renew the item and notify the patron if the item may or may not be renewed. Lenders usually determine a renewal within 2- 7 days. Renewal requests must be made seven days before the due date. Overdue materials can not be renewed.

Returning Materials

Items should be returned in person and handed to a staff member at the Circulation Desk for proper processing and not deposited in the book drop or left on the counter.

Failure To Pick-Up Materials

Patrons who request an item via Interlibrary Loan and fail to pick up upon notification by a Library Staff member will be assessed a fee of $5.00 for each unclaimed item, in addition to any fees or charges assessed by the lending library. These charges will be reflected on the patron's account. Items not picked up five days after notification will be returned to the lending library.