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New Hampshire State Library
About Us - Publications - New Hampshire Interlibrary Loan Protocol Manual 1999 - Part I


This code is a voluntary agreement adopted by the New Hampshire Automated Information System Board to govern interlibrary lending among libraries in New Hampshire.

It is evident that it is impossible for one library to be self-sufficient. Sharing of library resources is essential for adequate and effective library service. The purpose of interlibrary loan as defined in this code is to obtain library material not available in the local library.

An interlibrary loan is a transaction in which library material, or a copy of the material, is made available by one library to another library upon request.

Under the terms of this code, it is permissible to request any type of material on interlibrary loan except those specifically excluded or limited by a library's interlibrary loan policy.


1. Every library shall have a current interlibrary loan policy.

2. Staff responsible for performing interlibrary loan transactions shall be completely familiar with the policies and procedures of local and state interlibrary loans including electronic modes of communication.

3. All libraries are responsible for compliance with the copyright law (see Appendix C) and its accompanying CONTU guidelines, and shall inform its users of the applicable portions of the law. An indication of compliance shall be provided with all copy requests.

4. The recommended loan periods for books shall be four weeks. For guidelines to all other materials, see individual library ILL policies.


1. 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 should make every effort to exhaust their own resources before resorting to interlibrary loan. Every library is encouraged to make its users aware of its interlibrary loan service.

2. It is generally accepted that materials are not requested if they are owned.

3. It is the borrowing library's responsibility to provide proper bibliographic citations:

a. Materials requested shall be described as completely and accurately as possible following accepted bibliographic practice.

b. When the borrowing library has access to an electronic database of holdings of the lending library, it shall provide complete and accurate bibliographic information as it appears on the database.

c. Sources of verification shall be given for all items verified in standard bibliographic tools. When the item cannot be verified, the statement "cannot verify" should be indicated, along with the user's source of reference and a list of tools searched.

d. Every request shall include the specific date beyond which the material will not be accepted by the user. (not possible with Galaxy)

e. 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 the nature of the material requires special handling. The borrowing library should assist the user in making the necessary arrangements.

f. 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 renewal, for the same period as the original loan, is granted.

g. The preferred method for transmitting interlibrary loan requests is electronic. The ALA form is the required alternative with one request per form.

h. Libraries without van service are encouraged to use the service through the closest library on the van route. If postal service is required the borrowing library must include a mailing label when the request is submitted.

4. Interlibrary loan is always a transaction between libraries. The borrowing library is responsible for materials from the time they leave the lending library until they are returned to that library.

5. The borrowing library shall instruct the user to return loans to the borrowing library, not to the lending library or any other library.

6. The borrowing library shall adhere to any restrictions placed by the lending library on use of the materials borrowed.


1. The decision to lend materials is at the discretion of the lending library.

2. A statement of interlibrary loan policy should be made available upon request and should be on file at the State Library.

3. Lending libraries shall respond to requests within two working days by filling the request, denying the request, or acknowledging reserve of the material.

4. If the borrowing library has made a good-faith effort to provide complete bibliographic verification, the lending library shall make every attempt to fill the request.

5. When possible, the lending library shall provide the borrowing library with a reason why it is unable to fill a request.

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