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9 July 2020: We're getting a lot of questions about what to do with ILLs that your patrons are returning. The current situation varies so much right now both across the country, and between public libraries and academics, that it's hard to give a definitive yes to sending everything back and it's unlikely we'll be able to do that for some time.  But for now ...

Mailing: OCLC is crowd sourcing a list where libraries can self-report whether they are accepting returns and/or lending items. Because libraries are adding themselves, it is by no means comprehensive, but at this time has over 2100 entries. That list can be found here:

For loans from public libraries not on the above list, we suggest checking their website to see if they are offering services like curbside delivery or limited open hours. If the library has staff reporting to the building, ILLs should be safe to mail back. 

If you don't see the lending library on this list or their website is unclear, and you'd like to know if they can accept returns, email us at with the Clio and/or ILL number and we can contact the owning library.

As always, we suggest making note of the USPS tracking number of your ILL returns.

Interstate delivery is not currently running, and might not be for awhile. Please do not send any items to Rhode Island through delivery at this time. You may keep to Rhode Island materials until interstate delivery resumes, or follow the above to try to mail them back.

For Massachusetts libraries, most academics are not yet receiving Delivery and their bins are being held in the sorting warehouses. I discussed this MLS Delivery and vendor staff, they said it is okay to send ILLs back to any Massachusetts library on delivery.  Optima is willing to hold items in the warehouses until schools and academics resume delivery.

Additionally, please feel free to submit new requests if your patrons are looking for materials. We are still not seeing close to the usual number of lenders, but more and more libraries are starting to return to lending. We'll do our best to find a lender!

Finally, we still have around 100 ILLs that were shipped to libraries back in March and have not been updated in Received. As you re-enter your buildings and start to receive delivery and go through your mail, please take the time to check Pending queues and update requests. If you have request Pending from March or earlier that you have not received, please let us know so we can investigate with the lender. At one point we had over 300 requests with this status, so thank you to everyone who was able to update!

If you have any questions or concerns about your ILLs, please contact the ILL team at

Thank you, and be well,
Alison, Kate, Laura, and Vincent
Posted 7/9/2020 to listservs:
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Contact us!

Resource Sharing Team
866-627-7228 select option #4

Laura Bogart, Resource Sharing Assistant x318

Kathryn Bowen, Resource Sharing Assistant x321

Vincent Nguyen, Resource Sharing Assistant x316

Alison DeMers, Resource Sharing Librarian x317

Scott Kehoe, Library Resources Director x308

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