Interlibrary Loan Print E-mail

Through ILL you can use your DeKalb County Public Library (DCPL) card to request items that DCPL does not own, such as books, articles or microfilm, from other library systems.

Items owned by DeKalb County Public Library, audiovisual materials, books published within the current calendar year or in high demand and Reference books are not eligible for ILL.

To request an item through ILL, visit your local library branch to fill out an Interlibrary Loan Request Form in person, or make your request online. You may also print the request form and fill it out before you come to the library branch. You must have a current, unblocked DeKalb County Public Library card.

ILL Fines and Fees:

  • $3.00 per item plus any additional charges imposed by the lending library, due upon pickup of the item. The ILL fee helps cover costs incurred in searching, ordering, and returning ILL materials.
  • $1.00 per day overdue fine
  • Lost and damaged fees are set by the lending library and are non-negotiable.

The Library's policy on Interlibrary Loan is available.

Frequently Asked Questions about Interlibrary Loan



What is Interlibrary Loan (ILL)?

ILL is a service that allows you to use your DeKalb County Public Library (DCPL) card to request items that DCPL does not own, such as books, articles or microfilm, from other library systems.

How do I request materials through the ILL Department?

Requests may be made two ways:

  • Online, using the electronic form
  • In person at a branch, using the paper form


Is there a limit to the number of requests I can make?

You may have up to three active requests in process at the same time. This includes requests already submitted for items not yet received. Requests are considered active until items are returned to the library and checked in.

May I combine my requests on one form?

No. Complete a separate request for each book, microfilm series, or article* you are requesting.

*Please note that entire issues of periodicals or bound volumes of periodicals may not be borrowed. Also, copyright guidelines restrict us from requesting more than one article from any single issue of a periodical. If you need multiple articles from the same issue, microfilm may be a better option.

How soon will my request arrive?

Allow at least two weeks. Arrival times vary and depend on the availability of the item and the time it takes the U.S. mail to deliver it. Some requests may take four to six weeks to arrive.

How will I know when my book or article is available?

The library branch you designate as your pickup location will notify you by telephone or email when your book or article is available. If you do not provide a local telephone number on the ILL request, you will receive all notifications by email.

How much does this service cost?

There is a $3.00 fee for each ILL request filled by a lending library. If a request cannot be filled, no fees will be assessed. If a loan cannot be completed through a library within the DeKalb County Public Library’s (DCPL) sharing networks, additional fees may be required. Depending on the lending library, additional fees may range from $10-$25. You will be contacted if a lender will charge more than you indicate you are willing to pay. All fees are due at the time of pickup.*

*Please remember that you are responsible for paying the ILL fee even if you do not pick up the item.

How long may I keep ILL materials?

The length of time varies. Each individual lending library or institution determines the loan period.

Can I renew ILL materials?

In most cases you will be able to renew your ILL materials. (If the lending library does not grant renewal requests, this will be indicated on the ILL book band included with your item.) To request a renewal, please contact your local branch or the ILL Department at the Decatur Library at least five days before the book is due. ILL renewals may not be made through Telecirc or by using My Account on the library website.

It may take up to two business days before a lending library responds to a renewal request. Renewals are not guaranteed.

What are the overdue charges for an ILL?

The overdue fines for ILL materials are $1.00 per day, per item.

May I return an ILL in the bookdrop?

No, ILL returns may not be placed in the bookdrop. Items must be returned in person to the Circulation Desk at any DeKalb County Public Library branch.

What if I lose or damage ILL materials?

You will be billed for lost and damaged materials at replacement costs established by the lending library. Lost and damaged fees are non-negotiable. In addition, there will be a $6.00 non-refundable processing fee.

Are there certain items I cannot request through ILL?

The ILL Department is not able to borrow certain types of items. You cannot request the following:*

  • Books published during the current calendar year
  • Audiovisual materials (for example, DVDs and audiobooks)
  • Materials only available from libraries outside the U.S.
  • Entire issues of periodicals (or bound volumes of periodicals)
  • Unpublished works, such as conference papers (with the exception of ERIC documents)
  • More than one article from any single issue of a periodical. (If you need multiple articles from the same issue, microfilm may be a better option.)


*Please keep in mind that libraries only lend their circulating materials through ILL. High demand books, reference materials, university course reserves, and genealogy or special collections materials generally cannot be borrowed. We can request photocopies of excerpts from these types of materials (for example, an encyclopedia entry, a book chapter, or information regarding a specific person from a genealogy book).

Do I have to return articles or photocopies that I receive through ILL?

No. All photocopied materials are yours to keep, but please remember to keep copyright restrictions in mind. All photocopied materials received through ILL may only be used for private study, scholarship, or research.

How do I cancel an ILL request?

Contact your local branch or the ILL Department at the Decatur Library. Once the material is en route from the lending library to fill your request, you are responsible for the ILL fee to cover return shipping fees.

Have additional questions?

Email the ILL Department at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

ILL Online Request

I prefer to be contacted by * telephone
Statement of Responsibility

By checking the box below you agree to comply with the following statements:

  • I am responsible for all books I borrow through Interlibrary Loan (ILL) and will pay the borrowing fee plus any fines and/or fees for late, damaged or lost materials.
  • I understand that I must pay the ILL fee even if I fail to pick up the item.
  • I understand that the overdue fine for an ILL book is $1.00 per day.
  • I understand that the lending library sets due dates and renewal dates, as well as costs for lost or damaged books.
  • I understand that failure to follow ILL rules and regulations may result in a temporary suspension of my right to borrow ILL materials.

I agree to pay the basic fee of $3.00
plus any additional fees charged by
the lending library, up to (select amount) *
for a total of $
By checking this box, I verify that I am the cardholder and agree to pay all fees and accept full responsibility for all materials received through Interlibrary Loan *
Type of request *
* Required field


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