Interlibrary Loan Policy

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is a mutual agreement among libraries to share library resources. The service allows our patrons to borrow items that are owned by other libraries. Our resources to serve the diverse needs and interests of our community are limited and it is impossible to purchase everything that may be of interest. ILL enhances the library’s ability to provide community members with materials they need and want.

This policy governs the Dickinson Area Public Library (DAPL) borrowing of items for our patrons from other libraries via ILL and DAPL’s lending of materials to other libraries.

The Library Director reserves the right to make exceptions.

Interlibrary Borrowing

Eligibility and Limits on ILL Borrowing

ILL service is available to current DAPL cardholders who have a library card in good standing.  This does not include temporary patrons. Expired cards must be reactivated and library blocks addressed before requests will be processed. Dickinson State University students must request ILLs from Stoxen Library.

A patron is allowed up to five active ILL requests for material not available through ODIN. Active requests include those on loan as well as those in process.

Materials Available Through ILL

Any materials not currently owned by DAPL or another ODIN library may be requested through ILL. Items owned by DAPL or another ODIN library (including items checked out, on hold, or non-circulating) must be accessed via a hold in the DAPL catalog.  If an item requested is not available in DAPL collections or through ODIN, an ILL form can be filled out to request the item from another library.  Every effort will be made to supply the requested material. However, lending libraries often will not loan new items, archival materials, reference works, audiovisual, and rare, bulky or fragile items. Photocopies of articles from magazines or periodicals can also be requested. Providing an accurate citation of the material required is extremely helpful.


DAPL is bound by the regulations of the lending library, including due dates and restrictions on use.  Some materials may be lent on the condition that they are only used within the library.

DAPL attempts to borrow material free of charge. However, some libraries do charge for ILLs. If a requested item can only be accessed for a fee, the patron will be notified and the item will not be requested until the patron has agreed to pay.

Because of copyright restrictions (Title 17, U.S. Code), each calendar year, DAPL may obtain no more than five articles published within the last five years from any periodical (journal, newspaper, or magazine).

Requesting an Item Through ILL

ILL requests can be made in person at the front desk, or by calling 701-456-7700. Please provide as much information as possible about the material requested. There is also a printable copy of the ILL request form accessible on the library’s website.

Waiting Time for Materials

Service will be provided as quickly as possible. The time required will vary depending on staff availability to process requests. The time required will also vary dependent on the lending library and the materials requested. We cannot estimate a processing time for an ILL request. If we are unable to obtain the material by the date required by the patron the material will not be ordered. 

Notification of Patrons

Patrons will be notified by phone or e-mail when their material arrives. Unfilled requests, overdues, recalls, and other matters will be communicated as needed.

Loan Periods and Renewals

Loan periods vary for ILL items as they are set by the lending institution. This includes the potential for the item to be recalled.

Requests for renewal must be made before the item’s due date. Renewals are granted at the discretion of the lending library and cannot be guaranteed.

Overdue Fines and Replacement Costs

Fines for overdue ILL materials may apply and will vary based on the lending library’s policies.  Replacement costs for lost or damaged material are set by the lending institution.

Material Pickup

ILL materials may be picked up at the library front desk. Bookmobile patrons may request delivery at their usual stop or at the library branch in Medora.

If an ILL is unclaimed, it will be held at the library until it is due back at the lending library. Subsequent requests for the same item will not be accepted from the same patron. ILL borrowing privileges may be suspended for repeated unclaimed items.


Materials must be returned to DAPL and not to the lending library. The patron is responsible for all charges from the lending library including, but not limited to, lending fees, late fees, and charges resulting from damage or loss of materials.

Interlibrary Lending

The DAPL participates as a lender to North Dakota libraries through our local library system as well as nationally through the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC).

Materials Available

DAPL will loan items from our circulating collections with the exception of new materials within six months of arrival, technology, park passes, and kits or bundles. Non-circulating items, such as Reference and Special Collections, will not be available for ILL.

The DAPL reserves the right to refuse to lend materials or to ask a borrowing library to restrict the use of materials requested.

DAPL does not charge a lending fee.

Conditions of Loans

The borrowing library and its patrons must comply with the loan conditions specified by the DAPL, including loan periods.

The borrowing library is responsible for the borrowed material. If loss or damage occurs, the borrowing library is responsible for replacement fees as determined by DAPL.

Approved by the Library Board          January 14, 2020