ALL SCCLD locations will CLOSE early at 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 24 and will be CLOSED Wednesday, December 25 for Christmas. See regular library hours. Read More

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Request - $4.00 Fee

About Interlibrary Loan

Do you have questions that are not answered below?
Please contact us at or 408-293-2326 ext. 3013

An Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is a request to libraries in the United States or Canada for material not owned by the Santa Clara County Library District. This service is available to customers with currently active library cards. There is a $4.00 non-refundable processing fee for each ILL request submitted. If you are requesting multiple items on one ILL request, such as several dates of a periodical or microfilm, the lending library may limit how many pieces they will send per ILL request. If multiple ILL requests are required to obtain all the items you want, there will be a $4.00 fee for each ILL request processed. In addition, some lending libraries may charge additional lending fees. You will be given the opportunity to indicate how much you are willing to pay over and above the $4.00 ILL request fee.

There is a $1.00 per day overdue fine for ILL materials. There are no Senior Exemptions for ILL overdue fees.  If an ILL item is more than six weeks overdue, returned damaged, or returned missing pieces, your library account will be charged for the lost, damaged or incomplete item as follows:
  • Lost Charge in the amount the lending library charges us for the lost item.  Please be aware that while most libraries charge their actual replacement cost, some libraries punitively charge $150.00 or more per lost item.
  • $24 non-refundable processing fee.
If you return the item after the Lost Charge has been applied to your library account, but before our library has paid the lending library’s lost charges, your library account will be credited for the Lost Charge.  If you return the item after our library has paid the lending library’s lost charges, your library account will not be credited for the Lost Charge.


Types of Materials

A wide range of materials are available through ILL. Some materials are more difficult to obtain because other libraries may NOT loan certain collections or formats, such as:
  • reference items
  • original or rare materials
  • newspapers in original format (although these may be available on microfilm)
  • DVDs
  • CDs
Newer items (i.e., published within the last twelve months) are normally not available through ILL. However, you may recommend newer titles for purchase for the library's collection by submitting a Suggest a Purchase form online, or at your local library's reference desk.

The Library Has three Methods for Accepting Interlibrary Loan Requests:

  1. Submit an Interlibrary Loan Request at any reference desk during open hours at any of our libraries.
  2.  Fill out the online ILL request form from your internet connected mobile device or computer. Search for items in other libraries by using WorldCat. You can search for free, but placing an ILL request will incur a $4.00 ILL request fee on your library account. Start by searching for your item here.
    Once you have located the correct version of the item you want (i.e. title, author, format, publication date, etc.) click on the "Request Item" button.
    For example:

Request Item button

You will then be taken to the Interlibrary Loan Request Form, which looks like this:

Ill Request Form
Ill Request Form

Once you fill in the required fields and click on "Submit" the form will be sent directly to the Santa Clara County Library District ILL department and you will see a confirmation page with your Interlibrary Loan Request number.  

3.  Another tool for browsing and placing ILL requests is WorldCat Advanced Search. You may search for free, but placing an ILL request will incur a $4.00 ILL request fee on your library account. Start your WorldCat Advanced Search here. 


How Do I check On The Status of My ILL?

Please allow 1-2 business days for your request to begin process online. Once in process, ILL items usually are received in 2-3 weeks depending on the lending institution and shipping time.

You may check on the status of your ILL request by logging into your library account and viewing your holds.  When you see your ILL request listed in your holds, then you know that your request has been received and is in process.

If we are able to get the ILL item you requested, we will notify you when it is ready for pick-up at the Santa Clara County Library District (SCCLD) library you selected. Please go to the Accounts Desk of the library to pick up the ILL item. If someone other than the cardholder will be picking up the ILL Item, they must have the library card and know the title of the ILL Item they are picking up. Our Confidential Information Policy says Library staff may not give information about a patron's registration and circulation records to anyone other than the patron. Library staff will not be able to check out an ILL item for someone other than the borrower, unless the person has both the requestor’s library card and knows the title of the ILL item.

Once the clerk checks the item out on the requestor’s library card, they will adjust the due date.  The lending library dictates the due date of the ILL item, so the check-out time allowed for your item may be shorter or longer than our normal loan periods.   

We request that ILL items be returned to the Accounts Desk of the SCCLD library where it was checked out, during regular business hours, with all of the ILL paperwork attached. Please do not return ILL items in the bookdrop.

Certain ILL items are for “Library Use Only,” which means you will be able to pick the ILL item up at the Accounts Desk at your SCCLD library and use the item in the library during regular business hours. You must return the ILL item to the Accounts desk before leaving the library.  Let the clerk know if you are finished with the item or wish to return another day to use the item again. You may come in as many times as you would like to use the ILL item until the due date which will show on your account as the Pickup by Date.

If we are not able to obtain the ILL item you requested, we will notify you. As mentioned above, the $4 ILL Request Fee is non-refundable, even if we are not able to obtain the ILL item requested. 

Cancelling Your ILL Request

If you want to cancel your ILL request, please let us know by emailing or calling 408-293-2326 ext. 3013. If you cancel your ILL request online, neither the SCCLD ILL department, nor the lending libraries receive notification, so the process of attempting to obtain the ILL item goes forward. The $4.00 ILL fee still applies to cancelled ILL requests.


To request a renewal of your ILL item, please email or call 408-293-2326 ext. 3013. We will contact the lending library and let you know if your renewal request is approved.