Marathon County Public Library

learning • community • ideas • information

Interlibrary Loan FAQs

Contact the Interlibrary Loan Department.

Who may use ILL service? -- Anyone who has a valid Marathon County Public Library card in good standing may use this service. You can make interlibrary loan requests at any MCPL location, or submit your request online using WISCAT.

What kinds of materials can be borrowed through ILL? -- ILL requests are accepted for many items not found in our library system catalog (V-Cat), including books, magazine or newspaper articles, audio books, nonfiction DVDs or VHS tapes, music cassettes and CDs. Items published within the current and previous year may not be requested.

What kinds of materials cannot be borrowed? -- Non-circulating and reference materials, genealogical materials, newspapers in original format (newspapers may usually be borrowed on microfilm), whole issues of magazines, computer software and games, Rosetta Stone materials (for any language), print items valued at under $10, items published more than 75 years ago, and items from special collections. Copyright law may limit the amount of material that may be photocopied.

What if the item is recently published? -- Items published within the current or previous calendar year may not be requested. However, you may recommend that your local library purchase this title. You may request that the library reserve the item for you if it is purchased.

Are magazines available through ILL? -- Although whole issues of magazines are available for checkout in your library's catalog most other libraries will not lend an entire issue of a magazine, but may provide photocopies of individual articles instead. Thus, when requesting a magazine not available in the library's catalog (V-Cat), please include article information. If a particular article is not desired, but a copy of the table of contents will suffice, please request that. In addition, many full-text magazine and journal articles are available in EBSCOhost databases. BadgerLink contains many full-text newspaper and magazine articles, including ERIC, the Educational Resource Information Center, which contains more than 2,200 digests along with references for additional information and citations and abstracts from over 1,000 educational and education-related journals. ProQuest contains many full-text newspaper articles.

How much does ILL cost? -- There is no direct charge to the patron for interlibrary loan services. However, borrowers are responsible for overdue charges incurred or for any charges incurred for lost or damaged items. Overdue charges for ILL items are $1.00 per day, per item. Charges for lost or damaged items are determined by the lending library and may exceed $50. Patrons will not be reimbursed the replacement cost for Interlibrary Loan items that have been lost, paid for, and then found.

How do I request materials through ILL? -- If you have not found the title you need in the library's catalog (V-Cat), you may submit an ILL request at your local public library or you can login to WISCAT. Please provide as much information as possible to help identify the specific item that you are seeking, such as the title, author, publisher, etc. Many full-text magazine and journal articles can be found in EbscoHost databases. Newspaper and magazine articles are available in BadgerLink. If the article you want is not available in these databases, you may submit an ILL request for a copy of the article. When submitting a request, please include all of the citation information given in the source of your citation. Titles published within the current or previous year, with the exception of magazine/newspaper articles, may not be requested.

What if I need information on a particular subject but don't have an exact title? -- Your local public library staff can help you find information on a particular subject.

What if I no longer need an item I requested? -- Please call the Interlibrary Loan Department at 715-261-7244 or email us. You may also contact your local MCPL.

How many ILL requests can I submit? -- Interlibrary loan staff will accept and process five requests per month from any one person. If requesting items that consist of multiple parts/volumes, each part/volume needs to be submitted on a separate interlibrary loan request form. Each part/volume will be counted as one request.

How long will it take to receive my ILL request? -- ILL items can take from 2-8 weeks to obtain depending on the item’s location, its availability at the lending library, and the lending library's response time. Because the process is dependent upon responses from other institutions and delivery systems, delivery times may vary greatly. Some materials, e.g. items that are difficult to locate, may take considerably longer than average. Some items may never become available for borrowing. Try to allow adequate lead-time when making a request. ILL staff will notify you if the requested title cannot be obtained.

How will I know when my materials arrive? -- Patrons will be notified by phone or email when the item is available for pickup. If choosing to be notified by email, you will need to add the ILL email address " " to your email address book so that our notices to you are not filtered out as spam. Patrons will also be notified if we cannot obtain an item.

How long may I keep ILL items for use? -- The loan period for all ILL materials is determined by the lending library, generally from 1-2 weeks. Some reference materials may be restricted to "Library use only" by the lending library and may not be checked out for use at home.

What if I'm not finished with the item by its due date? -- If a renewal is needed, please contact the ILL staff with your renewal request at least 2-3 days prior to the due date. Contact the ILL Department directly at 715-261-7244 or email us. Please note: The same title may not be requested more than once per patron within any 3 month period.

Why can't you get what I've requested? -- We are unable to obtain items from locations other than in WI, MN, ND, SD. Sometimes the item is in use. Sometimes the library will not lend it because it is a reference item and must be used in the library. Sometimes the library says "no" without giving a reason. Sometimes we cannot find a library that owns the requested title. Please remember that not every library that owns a particular item will lend it via interlibrary loan.

Where do I return ILL materials? -- Return all ILL materials borrowed through MCPL’s Interlibrary Loan Dept. to any Marathon County Public Library location. Do not return any item borrowed through the Marathon County Public Library's Interlibrary Loan service to any other library. Please leave all paperwork attached to the item, and do not remove the ILL label/barcode from the item. When the library is closed, you may return interlibrary loan items to any MCPL bookdrop.