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Interlibrary Loan Services

Interlibrary Loan Service and Policy


Information Services 1-800-307-2665 or (402) 471-4016
Fax (Reference Desk) (402) 471-6244
Nebraska Library Commission Interlibrary Loan Request Form


Information Services
Nebraska Library Commission
The Atrium
1200 N Street, Suite 120
Lincoln, NE 68508

What is Interlibrary Loan?

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" includes all formats. The purpose of Interlibrary Loan as defined by the Interlibrary Loan Code for Nebraska is to obtain library material not available in the local library. It is permissible to request on Interlibrary Loan any type of library material which the lending library is willing and able to lend.

Many Nebraska libraries provide ILL services to their customers directly. When libraries are unable to provide local ILL services, the Library Commission will facilitate transactions using the OCLC Interlibrary Loan system. The Interlibrary Loan tip sheet can be helpful for understanding how this service works. Interlibrary Loan service is also offered to Nebraska state employees for work related information needs. In some cases, loans may be more easily facilitated by using an ALA Interlibrary Loan Request Form.

Who may use Interlibrary Loan?

Anyone who is a state employee may use the Interlibrary Loan service to obtain materials for job related purposes. As of July 1st, 2001, the Nebraska Library Commission began providing back-up Interlibrary Loan Service to Nebraska libraries who formerly used resource centers. A goal of the Nebraska Library Commission is to provide interlibrary loan transactions in a timely and effective manner. When local libraries are unable to provide local ILL services, the Library Commission will facilitate the Interlibrary Loan transactions using the OCLC Interlibrary Loan system. Libraries currently directly providing ILL services to customers will continue providing this service.

What kind of material can be borrowed through Interlibrary Loan?

In general any item that has been published and cataloged can be obtained through Interlibrary Loan. Books and copies of periodical articles are the main resources available. We will not accept requests for books published within the last 12 months or still on best seller lists.   Most libraries are unwilling and unable to lend new  titles because of the demand generated by their own customers.

Some libraries may own but will not loan the following items:

** Recently published, popular or rare books
** Entire copy of a journal
** Microfilm or fiche
** Thesis or dissertation
** Audiovisual material

What information is needed to borrow a book?

The patron should provide as much information as possible to help locate the requested item:

** Author's last name, first name and/or middle initial(s)
** Title
** Publisher
** Date of publication (or approximate time span in which it might have been published)

If there is some confusion about the specific item requested, the additional information should be asked:

** Place of publication, if not a well-known publisher
** Specific edition; otherwise any available edition may be sent
** Title and volume number, if the book is part of a series
** Name of the translator or editor, if you want only a specific edition
** Source from which the citation was taken, e.g. computer search, bibliography of another article, word of a colleague, TV or radio program, publisher's promotional literature, etc.

As much patron information as possible should be included on the original request. Name of patron, agency and phone number are necessary. The patron should identify how they would like to receive their request by marking interoffice mail, pick up, fax or send through regular mail. For back-up ILL requests from libraries, the material will be sent to the initiating library.

How to obtain a journal article

In most cases a lending library will not be able to lend an entire issue of a journal, even for review purposes. In such a case, the Library Commission will try to find a lender. If no lender is found the publisher's address will be provided by the Library Commission so the patron may write for a sample copy. The patron may request a specific magazine article through Interlibrary Loan.

The following information is needed to place the journal request:

** Title of the journal
** Volume and/or number
** Date
** Pages on which the article is found and ends
** Name of the article author
** Title of article
** Source from which the citation was taken

If the patron's requests are the result of a computer search, a printed copy should be sent to Information Services using one of the means of contact listed at the beginning and end of this article, with the requested articles highlighted or marked in some way to identify the requests.

If journal citations are received with insufficient information and the patron cannot give more information they will be passed onto Information Services for verification. If Information Services is unable to verify the citation, the patron will be notified that the request cannot be filled.

If Nebraska locations are used a request may take 2-3 days. If items are requested outside the state items may take 7-10 working days to receive. Delivery via fax is available upon request.

The Information Services staff should be notified by the patron if the request is a RUSH or needed as soon as possible so that information can be included in the request to lending libraries. Interlibrary Loan requests are placed in the order they are received.

How to submit an Interlibrary Loan request

In most cases many Interlibrary Loan requests start at the Information Services desk. Reference staff can help locate book and article needs by providing searches. These searches determine where the requested material might be located. If a patron has complete citations from other sources they may be referred directly to the Interlibrary Loan Department. Both book and journal requests will be accepted by phone, fax, postal mail, e-mail, or via the Ask-A-Librarian web page. Walk-ins are welcome.

When you receive and return the materials, please contact the Reference Desk by one of the means listed at the beginning or end of this page, and give them the ILL number and title of the material and explain that you have received or returned the item.

How many requests may a patron submit?

There is no limit on how many requests may be submitted by a patron over an extended period of time. However, depending upon work flow, Nebraska Library Commission Information Services staff may only be able to place 10 requests per patron per day.

Is there a charge for Interlibrary Loan?

Generally, there is no charge passed on to state agency personnel for job-related materials or for ILL requests from libraries. The Library Commission will absorb up to $20.00 in Interlibrary Loan costs. If the item requested is only available from a library that charges more than $20.00 per transaction the patron will be notified and, upon their approval, will be billed for the entire cost of the item.

What is the duration of a Loan?

The lending library will determine the length of the loan and length will vary library to library. The loan period will be clearly indicated on the Interlibrary Loan book band on the library material. Interlibrary Loan material needs to be returned promptly by the due date. All Interlibrary Loans are subject to recall. The patron will be notified and the item should be returned as soon as possible.

How to request renewal for materials borrowed:

If the item has a book band, it was borrowed from another library. It may already have a stamp notice on it indicating that it cannot be renewed. If no such notice is on the band, a renewal request can be placed by using one of the means of contact listed at the beginning and end of this article. It may take a few days to confirm, since the Library Commission must first contact the lending library. The patron may keep the book until otherwise notified. If the renewal is not granted, the patron may ask that a second copy of the item be requested from another library at the time the patron returns the first copy.

How to request a renewal for materials borrowed from NLC:

If the renewal request is for something that is on loan from the Library Commission collection, you may contact Information Services in any of the ways listed above to request a renewal. The renewal request will be placed with the circulation department. Upon approval, the patron will be notified of the new due date. If the item is not available and is on reserve, the patron will be notified to return the item as soon as possible.

What if a patron loses materials?

If a patron loses materials borrowed through Interlibrary Loan the loaning library may choose to charge for its loss and/or replacement. The patron will then be notified and responsible for the cost of replacement.

Overdue materials

If the patron keeps a loan considerably beyond its due date, the loaning library may ask that the patron either return the book or pay for its replacement. The Library Commission will inform the patron if such a request is made and arrange for the return of the item or the payment of the charge.

The Library Commission staff do their very best to find the material or information requested by the patron.

If the material requested is not what the patron requested or needs, the patron should return the item to the Interlibrary Loan Department. Information Services will help to determine if there is a need to re-initiate the request.


Information Services 1-800-307-2665 or (402) 471-4016
Fax (Reference) (402) 471-6244
Interlibrary Loan Code for Nebraska
Nebraska Library Commission Interlibrary Loan Request Form

Information Services
The Atrium
1200 N Street, Suite 120
Lincoln, NE 68508

For more information, contact Information Services Team.