Borrowing Information, Loan Periods & Fines

Borrowing Privileges

To borrow books, audiovisual materials, or course reserve materials from the UNM University Libraries, you must be a currently enrolled student at a UNM campus, an employee currently on the payroll, an adjunct or visiting faculty, or a retiree. Community borrower information.

Loan Periods & Fines
Undergraduates, Special Borrowers and CNM Gateway studentsGraduate and University Honors Students, Faculty, StaffCommunity Borrowers, UNM Affiliates (KUNM)Fine if OverdueItem Limits
Books and Government Publications 60 days (2 renewals) 1 semester (6 renewals) 14 days (2 renewals) $10 after 180 days 200 items for UNM faculty, staff, and students
Periodicals Non-circulating Non-circulating Non-circulating Not applicable Not applicable
Sound Recordings** 1 week (1 renewal) 14 days (2 renewals) 1 week (1 renewal) $10 after 180 days

Up to 200 items for UNM faculty, staff, and students

10 items for Community Borrowers and UNM Affiliates (KUNM)

DVD and Video Recordings** 5 days (2 renewals) 5 days (2 renewals) 5 days (2 renewals) $10 after 180 days 5 items for all library patrons
Interlibrary Loan Items 2-3 weeks 2-3 weeks Not Available See ILL page Not applicable
2 or 4 hour Reserve Items 2 or 4 hours 2 or 4 hours Not Available $10 after 180 days 5 reserve items of any type
1 or 3 day Reserve Items 1 or 3 days 1 or 3 days 1 or 3 days $10 after 180 days 5 reserve items of any type

** Most of University Libraries Sound Recordings, Videos and DVDs are housed at the Fine Arts and Design Library. These items circulate as specified above. Similar items held at other locations may have different loan periods.

Returning UNM Library Materials

The prompt return of library materials is in the best interest of all UNM library users.  Borrowed materials may be returned to the book depositories located near the main entrance of each of the campus libraries or the Service Desks where borrowers may request a receipt for the items that are being returned.  General collection books borrowed from any of the main campus libraries may be returned at any of those facilities.  Interlibrary Loan items, Reserves, electronic equipment, DVD’s and billed items should be returned to the Service Desk of the branch from which it was checked out. Library users are encouraged to return materials that have been borrowed from the Law or Health Science Center Libraries to those same libraries.  Material borrowed from the main UNM campus may not be returned to branch campuses.

Suspension of Borrowing Privileges

Borrowing privileges will be suspended when a borrower fails to comply with the loan policies of the UNM University Libraries. The Library will make all reasonable efforts to notify the borrower in person, by mail, or by e-mail that the borrower’s privileges are in jeopardy because of overdue materials or unpaid bills.  Notices will be sent to the UNM NetID email address.  It is the responsibility of the borrower to check this regularly and be aware of when their library books are due.  Non-UNM affiliated users will be asked to provide an email address. 

All borrowers have the opportunity to appeal a library bill or a library overdue notice by contacting a member of the Access Services Billing Team.  If books have been returned, please fill out a Claimed Returned form; this will initiate a library wide search for the book on the shelves.  Items should be claimed returned as soon as possible, and will be renewed while the search is being conducted.  If books are not found on the shelf, they will remain on the borrower’s record.  If the library books have been stolen, a police report must accompany any appeal to have books removed from a borrower’s record.

Borrowing or renewal privileges can be suspended for failure to:

  • Return billed materials or pay for billed items.
  • Return materials borrowed via Interlibrary Loan.
  • Pay outstanding charges in excess of $100.00.
Reminder Notices

Reminder notices for overdue and recalled library materials are sent via e-mail as a courtesy.  Failure to receive a notice does not exempt a borrower from the responsibility to return books on time, and is not grounds for the cancellation of fines.  University Libraries sends notices to UNM affiliated user’s UNM e-mail address.  We encourage borrowers who do not regularly monitor their UNM e-mail account to arrange to forward mail from this account to their preferred account.  Community Borrowers may choose to receive courtesy notices at any e-mail account. 

Lost books

If an item is not returned or renewed in a timely fashion it will be treated as a lost book.  Borrower’s accounts will be billed and borrowing privileges will be suspended.  The current minimum replacement cost is $100 per book.  If library staff have evidence that the replacement cost of an item is likely to be higher or lower than the default charge (not including any labor or overhead), that price may be charged instead.  A $25.00 non-refundable fine will be added to recalled items that have been billed.

Once billed, items must be returned immediately to the branch library at which they were checked out.  The University Libraries prefers to receive replacement copies if the original item cannot be found and returned.  Replacement books must be the exact same item and in good condition.  A $10 processing fee will be added to a borrower’s record.  This allows for the item to return to circulation to be available to other users. 

If billed items are not returned or replaced immediately, charges will be forwarded to the Bursar’s Office.  All charges are payable to the University Cashiers or through myUNM. Unpaid charges may result in the University withholding student grades and transcripts or the faculty and staff member's final paycheck.  The Bursar’s Office may also chose to send any unpaid charges to a collection agency.  Any late or collection fees that may be added to the borrower’s University accounts, are the responsibility of the borrower and cannot be reversed by the Library.

If the item is returned, paid or replaced within six months (180 days) from due date, library privileges will be reinstated and the replacement cost will be removed from the borrower's account.  Any items that are returned, paid or replaced after six months (180 days) will be subject to an additional $10 processing fee.  If an item is returned after a statement has been paid, the replacement cost of the item will be refunded to the borrower’s UNM Bursar account.

Please speak to member of the Access Services Billing Team if there are any further questions.   There will be at least one Access Services Billing Person at the branch where the item was checked out.  Please contact any Service Desk or Ask-A-Librarian for the Access Services Billing Team’s direct contact information.


Users may request books that are currently checked-out.  This service is provided through Library Express, a part of Interlibrary Loan services.   In this case, the Library may choose to fulfil the request in one of three ways:

  • Purchase a second copy.
  • Request item through Interlibrary Loan.
  • Recall the item from the current borrower.

If a book is recalled from a current borrower, they will be notified through the same system that sends out Library notices.  The new recall due date supersedes the original due date. Borrowers will be notified when the recalled item has been returned and is available for pickup.   If this item is not returned in a timely manner, it will be treated as lost.  In addition, a $25.00 non-refundable fine will be added to billed recalled items.  If the item is not returned, but the charges are paid in full, library privileges will be reinstated.  Any item returned or replaced after six months (180 days) will have an additional $10.00 library fine. 

Claimed Returned or Never Checked Out

There are occasional instances where an error occurs when checking books in or out.  This may cause the incorrect item to be checked in or out on a borrower’s account.  In this instance the library should be notified as soon as possible.   We will begin a formal search procedure known as a “Claimed Returned or Never Checked Out”.  To begin this procedure, please fill out a Claimed Return form at any Service Desk, or by contacting a member of the Access Services Billing Team.  When the form is received, the items will be renewed while a library-wide search is being conducted.   If your account is already billed and privileges suspended, you must speak to an Access Services Billing Team Member to renew your item.  The item will remain checked out on your account while the search is being conducted.  If it is found it will be cleared from your record completely.  

At the end of the search, if the book is still missing, the Access Services Billing Team will decide whether there are enough mitigating circumstances to waive the replacement costs for the item.  There will be a lifetime limit to the amount of claimed return waivers allowed on a user’s account.  Once this limit is reached, users will not be allowed to check out additional items until the item is found or replaced.

Item Limits

Each UNM Affiliated user is permitted to have up to two hundred items checked out at any given time from the UNM University Libraries. We do also ask that borrowers check out no more than 3 reserve items at any given time or 5 videos or DVDs from the Fine Arts and Design Library at any given time. In addition, we ask undergraduate students to stay within a limit of 14 sound recording at any given time. These limits may be exceeded for a short time upon approval from an Access Services Circulation Supervisor at any University Libraries branch.

Proxy Authorization

Faculty members may authorize a teaching or research assistant to check out items on their behalf. A "Proxy Authorization Form" must be obtained at the Service Desk and completed by the faculty member. The form is not valid unless presented with the faculty member's valid Lobo Card. The teaching or research assistant is then issued a library card with the faculty member's library account number on the back. The proxy authorization is valid only until the end of the current semester and must be renewed for each semester the privileges are desired. The faculty member assumes responsibility for all materials borrowed by the proxy when using the proxy authorization library card.  Any lost items will be billed to the faculty member’s Bursar’s Account.

Community Borrowers

Community Borrowers Policy.

University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131