Interlibrary Loan Policies

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In support of the University of Montana mission to pursue academic excellence, the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library facilitates the intellectual and creative pursuits of all members of the University community and supports their informational, educational and cultural development as global citizens.  Interlibrary Loan borrows research materials not owned by the Mansfield Library and lends our materials to other libraries.

Circulation and Interlibrary Loan policies, and schedules of fees and fines, are created to ensure timely access by all users to library materials. All loan policies will be available in print and on the library’s website. Library fines and associated fees are subject to Board of Regents’ approval. Access privilege levels and borrowing checkout times have been set in accordance with electronic resource licensing agreements, library personnel resources, and the needs of diverse types of library users with consultation from appropriate campus groups including: Faculty Senate Library Committee, ASUM, Graduate Council, Staff Senate, Human Resource Services and the Alumni Association

Who May Use Interlibrary Loan

Faculty, students, staff, emeritus faculty and life time retirees of the University of Montana must be registered users of the Mansfield Library and have a valid library account to receive interlibrary loan privileges. Users may not submit requests for private business or commercial enterprises. Failure to abide by the library's policies may result in the suspension of interlibrary loan privileges. Requests from patrons with outstanding library fines, overdue items or lost materials will not be processed. Undergraduates are encouraged to work with the reference and Information Center personnel to identify appropriate materials that are held in the Mansfield Library's collections.

The library is not able to offer interlibrary loan service to alumni, inactive students, non-lifetime University retirees, community users (Montana Borrowers) and others not affiliated directly with the University of Montana. These users should seek interlibrary loan assistance from their local libraries.


There is no cost to the interlibrary loan patron to request material. Interlibrary loan costs are paid with library funds. National studies indicate each interlibrary loan request averages $29.00, split between the borrowing and lending library.

Using interlibrary loan

For immediate access to materials, please check the Mansfield Library OneSearch before placing interlibrary loan requests. Interlibrary loan requests are submitted online with the interlibrary loan Request Form. There are different types of interlibrary loans: loans that are borrowed from other libraries and must be returned and electronic material that is not returned. Borrowed material must be picked up at and returned to the Mansfield Library. A photo ID must be presented to pick up interlibrary loan material. Failure to pick up requested interlibrary loan material may result in suspension of interlibrary loan privileges. Conditions of use and loan periods for borrowed material are set by the lending library and have different loan periods. Generally, borrowed materials are available for two weeks of use. Renewals may be requested prior to the due date. Renewal approvals are given by the lending library. It is the user's responsibility to check their interlibrary loan account for renewal confirmation/rejection. Material requested through interlibrary loan is not borrowed for an entire semester and rarely, if ever, are textbooks loaned. If material is needed for an extended period of time for research purposes, it is recommended that an instruction librarian be contacted to assist with this need. Reproduced materials are generally received electronically from the lending library. The Mansfield Library's interlibrary loan software allows for easy electronic access to the material. Articles received electronically are available to the patron 24/7 for 30 days from date of receipt. They can be viewed, printed, pasted into documents, saved to disk or downloaded to a personal computer.

You may place a HOLD on a book or media item or government document, etc. in OneSearch regardless of whether it is checked out, sitting on the shelf in the Mansfield Library, or at one of our partner libraries. In OneSearch, choose an item from the result list, and on the next screen you will see an option on the right side to click HOLD. Follow the instructions, e.g. choosing your campus from the drop down menu for Pick Up At field, and you will be notified via e-mail when it is available for pick up at the Mansfield Library Information Center. If the material is on the shelf and coming from one of our partner libraries, it will be delivered via U.S. Postal Service and Campus mail and typically takes 1 and 3 days to become available. If you have a campus address and wish to have the item delivered, instead of picking it up, reply to our email or telephone notification message, ask for delivery of the item, and supply your address. When you are finished with the item or when it is due, return it to the library in person or via campus mail.

You may also request articles that are available at the Mansfield Library in print or electronically and we will deliver them to you electronically as a PDF.

Overdue and Damaged Material, Fines and Fees

Material borrowed through Interlibrary Loan are due back on the date and time specified by the lending library. Library users will be notified by e-mail about overdue material. All notices are sent via e-mail to UM library user's official University of Montana e-mail address.

Library users can see an up to date list of items checked out to them and the due dates by checking their Interlibrary Loan accounts. The Mansfield Library sends a series of courtesy notices to users about checked out and overdue items. The Library assumes no responsibility for incorrect address or contact information. The borrower bears sole responsibility for returning materials on time and in the same condition as when the item was checked out.  Non-receipt of courtesy notices, nor non-use of e-mail is not a factor in regard to charges.

Time intervals for notices are listed below and are based on typical library hours during the academic year; when the library is closed notices may be delayed accordingly.

A Reminder Notice is sent via email 5 days before an item is due.

An Overdue Notice is sent via email 7 days after the item's due date.

A second Overdue Notice is sent via email 14 days after the item's due date.

A Lost Notice is sent via email 21 days after the item is due.

After 21 days overdue the material will be declared lost and any charges and/or replacement, overdue and processing fees from the lending library will be posted to the user's library account and your library privileges will be suspended. Unpaid library material charges will result in temporary loss of library circulation privileges and further billing by UM Business Services.

Time Factors

Although turnaround times can vary considerably depending upon the type of request, the accuracy of the citation and the time of year, the following delivery times can be expected when planning research:

  • Electronically delivered articles: 1-4 days
  • Books and media borrowed from within Montana: 7 days
  • Books and media borrowed outside of Montana: 7-14 days

During peak times of the semester more time may be needed. Requestors should note their time constraints on the interlibrary loan form under NOT WANTED AFTER DATE.

Requests are processed 5 per patron per day in the order they are received. Therefore, patrons are expected to prioritize their requests and recognize that they will be processed as time permits. It is also important to note that multiple items requested at the same time often arrive at the same time with the same due date. Please plan for that when placing requests.

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