Interlibrary Loan Policy and Procedures

Interlibrary loan (ILL) is a service that allows patrons of Fort Bend County Libraries to borrow from other public, academic, or special libraries throughout Texas, the United States library materials that are not owned by our system. Non-circulating Reference and Genealogy materials owned by Fort Bend County Libraries cannot be borrowed from other libraries through interlibrary loan.

Patrons using this service must have a valid, unexpired, Fort Bend County Libraries card, with no fines or fees owed. The interlibrary-loan borrowing privileges of patrons with fines/fees will be suspended until sufficient payments are made to clear the overdue balance. Failure to return interlibrary loan items on time or to pick up items requested may result in the suspension of interlibrary loan services for the patron.

Materials Available Through Interlibrary Loan
Fort Bend County Libraries will attempt to borrow books and journal articles not owned by our library system. Noncirculating Reference and Genealogy material owned by Fort Bend County Libraries, cannot be borrowed from other libraries through interlibrary loan. Some libraries will not lend specific materials, and access to certain collections may be limited.

Each patron will be permitted to maintain a maximum of 10 active ILL requests on their library card. If a patron submits more than that number, the requests will be held until a sufficient number of items are returned.

Electronic books and serials are not available through ILL. Because of copyright restrictions, Fort Bend County Libraries is limited to borrowing five copies of articles from the current five years of a periodical title during the calendar year. Beginning January 1 of the new year, up to five more requests can be ordered from the same title. Fort Bend County Libraries, as a lender to other institutions, will not lend genealogy or reference materials, nor will it lend popular, high-demand materials that have been published in the last six (6) months.

Submitting Requests
Interlibrary loan requests may be submitted at any Fort Bend County library, in person, by telephone, by email, by fax, or online. Materials may take up to three weeks to arrive after the request is made. Patrons will be notified by telephone or email when materials have arrived.

Loan Period and Renewals
The loan period and any renewal terms are set by the lending library and will vary by institution. To request a renewal, patrons must call Fort Bend County Library at 281-341-2675.

Charges and Fees
There is no charge for requesting an ILL at Fort Bend County Libraries. However, some lending libraries may have additional charges for borrowing or photocopying materials, and that cost is the responsibility of the patron. Patrons may choose not to pay the additional charges, but must say so when making the ILL request; under this circumstance, FBCL may not be able to fill the request. Patrons will be charged $1.00 per day for overdue items and are responsible for all costs for lost or damaged materials.