Circ Policy FAQ

When are my library items due and how do I renew them?

Due dates may be reviewed by logging in to My Account from the Library Catalog. Once you are logged in, you may also renew the items from My Account.

An Overdue Notice is sent the first day an item becomes overdue and again at 14 days overdue. Notices are sent twice daily Monday through Friday.

For KU-owned items originally checked out for six weeks or four months, there are no overdue or lost item charges if the items are returned or renewed online or in person within 30 days of the due date. There is a limit of five online renewals after which the items must be returned to the library to be checked out again. Resident Borrowers may renew items online twice.

The exception is for recalled items. All KU-owned items checked out for six weeks or longer are available for recall at any time (including summer and when classes are not in session). The recall notice is sent by email, and you have 14 days from the recall date to return the items. Recalls block your ability to renew the recalled items online or in person.

If the KU item was checked out to you for two weeks or less, it cannot be renewed online, must be returned to the owning library to be checked out again, and is incurring overdue fines as soon as it becomes overdue. However, the overdue fine is not calculated until the item is returned to the library.

To determine whether an Interlibrary Loan (ILL) item can be renewed, contact Interlibrary Loan prior to the due date at illborr@ku.edu, call 785-864-3960, or visit the ILL Service Desk on the 2nd floor of Watson Library. If the lending library allows renewals, you will be provided a new due date, typically a one-time renewal of two weeks. If the lending library does not allow the renewal, you will be contacted via email and given a new due that is typically within two days of the email notice. Note that ILL items with jackets that indicate “NO RENEWALS” cannot be renewed and should be returned on time in order to avoid overdue charges.

Why are due dates important?

With KU-owned items, it is important to get the items renewed in order to account for the items and to avoid overdue and lost item charges.

With Interlibrary Loan items, it is important to return them on time for several reasons: 1) to ensure the KU Libraries’ ability to sustain borrowing items from other libraries that expect to have their items returned on time, and 2) so that you avoid any overdue charges.

What kinds of library charges can be incurred?

The overdue fine for recalled items is $2.00/day/item with a maximum of $20.00/item.

Items checked out for two weeks or less incur overdue fines with rates ranging from $1.00/hour ($.25/minute for laptops) to $4.00/day with a maximum of $20.00/item/occurrence ($60.00 for laptops). The overdue charge for Interlibrary Loan items borrowed from another library is $1.00/day with a maximum of $20.00/item/occurrence.

Items are declared lost at 30 days overdue, and the borrower is billed for the replacement of the item.  The cost of the item will vary, and a $20.00 processing fee is also applied. In addition, recalled items, ILL items, and all items checked out for two weeks or less will have the $20.00 overdue fine applied.

Once items have been declared lost, they cannot be renewed online and must be returned to the library.

After the library has finished processing the returned lost items, you will be able to check the items out again as long as they have not been recalled and you are a valid borrower with a library account balance of less than $80.00.

How does the library communicate with me?

All notices are sent via email. It is essential your email address be current and accurate in University records so the library system will be updated correctly. KU Library Borrower Card holders are also responsible for keeping their postal and email addresses up to date with the library. See Address Changes for additional information.

The Item Available Notice is sent when a requested item becomes available and notifies the requestor that an item will be held for 10 days from the date on the notice. The item will be available for checkout at the “Deliver to” service desk identified at the time the request was made.

An Overdue Notice is sent the first day after an item becomes overdue and again at 14 days overdue.

The Recall Notice is sent on the same day or the day after a recall is requested, and the borrower must return the item by the new due date specified on the notice in order to avoid a fine. The current borrower is allowed 14 days to return the recalled item. A Recall Overdue Notice is sent the day after the recalled item becomes overdue.

A Fine and Fee Notice is sent when recall, overdue, damage, returned check, or lost item charges have been incurred.

Failure to receive a notice does not remove the borrower’s obligation to return materials on time or to pay charges incurred.

What if I need to continue using a recalled KU-owned item?

Return the recalled item in order to avoid overdue fines. Place an Interlibrary Loan Request for the item you need, and record a note in the Comments box to report why you requested a KU item. The library will borrow a copy from another library for your use.

What blocks library privileges?

Library borrowing privileges are suspended when the borrower accumulates a total of $80.00 or more in unpaid charges or when the borrower is no longer enrolled or employed with the University or when the KU Library Borrower Card has expired.

What is the appeal process for library charges?

Borrowers have the right to appeal any library charge within 30 days of the original library billing. The first step is to contact the Libraries’ Circulation Business Office in person at the Watson Library Service Desk (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday), by phone at 785-864-4715, or via email at libfines@ku.edu.

Depending on where the item was checked out, you may be referred to the circulation desk at the owning location, or in the case of interlibrary loan items borrowed from another library, you will be referred to Interlibrary Loan. If resolution is reached with the owning library or ILL, the staff there will notify the Circulation Business Office of the decision. If resolution has not been reached, please feel free to contact the Circulation Business Office again.

The formal Library Appeals Form may be requested within 30 days of the original library billing. This requires completing the Appeals Form available from the Circulation Business Office. Charges will be reviewed by a 3-member Library Appeals Board appointed by University Senate.

The No-Fault Fine Reduction Policy is available once every four years for one or more overdue charges that have been incurred at the same time (not over a period of time). The policy can be applied only to overdue fines, not to lost item charges, processing fees, damage charges, or returned check fees. The Fine Reduction must be requested within 30 days of the original library billing.

No-Fault Fine Reduction Policy

Inquire within 30 days of the original library billing to see if you qualify for the library’s No-Fault Reduction Policy. The No-Fault Reduction Policy may be used once every four years, and applies only to recall fines, short-term loan fines, laptop fines, and reserve loan fines. It may not be applied to processing fees, damage charges, or to the cost of lost (unreturned) library materials. The reduction will be applied in the library system at the time the borrower is ready to pay the remaining balance due.

Inquiries may be directed to the Circulation Business Office with an email message to libfines@ku.edu.

What happens when the library charges are not paid?

Within 90-120 days after the original due date, unpaid library charges are transferred to the University Bursar’s Office for collection. Depending on the dollars owed, the amount transferred may or may not continue to block library records.

Once the KU Bursar’s Office is involved, the procedures used for collections are State of Kansas and University regulations and procedures. The Bursar’s Office bills again, and payments need to be submitted to the Bursar’s Office, not to the library. If the charges continue to remain unpaid for state employees, they will be deducted from the employee’s pay check through the State Setoff program. However, any appeals to the actual charges are referred back to the Circulation Business Office. Contact the Circulation Business Office in person at the Watson Library Service Desk (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday), by phone to 785.864.4715, or via email to libfines@ku.edu.

Ask Questions about KU Libraries Policies and Procedures

Your questions about Library Policies and Procedures of the University of Kansas Libraries may be directed to:

  • The Ask a Librarian service.
  • The Circulation Business Office.
    • Via email to libfines@ku.edu .
    • By mail to: Circulation Business Office, University of Kansas Libraries, 1425 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045-4715
  • The circulation specialists on duty at library service desks.

Please include this information in any message:

  • Your name
  • Your email address
  • Your telephone number including the area code
  • Your 8-digit library barcode number (6- or 7-digit student number also acceptable)
  • Specific information regarding your inquiry about library policies and procedures

If you need additional assistance with questions and concerns about Library Policies and Procedures, contact one of the following:

Sarah Couch
Service Policy Coordinator
In person at the Watson Library Service Desk, by phone at 785-864-8979, or via email at scouch@ku.edu.

Jeromy Horkman
Director of Public Operations
By phone at 785-864-8948 or via email at jhorkman@ku.edu.

Lars Leon
Head of Resource Sharing
By phone at 785-864-3073 or via email at lleon@ku.edu.

Judith Emde
Assistant Dean of Content and Access Services
By phone at 785-864-4931 or via email at jemde@ku.edu.


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