OHSU Library Interlibrary Loan Copyright Compliance Practice


The purpose of this document is to describe the OHSU Library’s practices and procedures for reviewing interlibrary loan requests data to ensure the service is in compliance with Copyright Law.   

OHSU Library Process

The OHSU Library Copyright Compliance Team consists of the University Librarian, the Director of Collection Management, and librarians with copyright expertise. The Team will use ILL data managed by the ILL/Document Delivery Coordinator to twice annually review instances where aggregate quantities of ILL copy requests for a title may be approaching the level of substituting for a subscription. The Team will determine and document an outcome at each review in accordance with following Copyright Law. 


  • Access Services maintains records of ILL article requests filled for Library users. 
  • Access Services will twice annually (first six months of current year in July and full prior calendar year in January) provide aggregated requests data to the OHSU Library Copyright Compliance Team. 
  • The OHSU Library Copyright Compliance Team will review the data twice annually for copyright compliance and potential subscription. 
  • Review factors for potential subscription or ILL royalty payment consideration may include, but are not limited to: 
    • Number of borrowing requests filled for articles published in the last 5 years of a serial title; 
    • Number of OHSU members making those requests; 
    • Frequency/pattern/purpose of requests within a calendar year and across years; 
    • Subscription list price and Copyright Clearance Center ILL royalty fee; 
    • OHSU member recommendations/requests for title subscription (for subscription consideration); 
    • Publisher/provider website access denial (for subscription consideration). 
  • Other library staff may be consulted in an advisory role as needed. 
  • Possible outcomes of these reviews may include: 
    • The ILL requests fell within scope of section 107 (Fair Use) or 108 (copying by libraries and archives) of the 1976 Copyright Act and no ILL copyright royalty fee will be due;
    • The Library adds a subscription to a serial title;
    • The ILL requests were beyond Fair Use and “in such aggregate quantities as to substitute for a subscription to or purchase of such work” and ILL royalty fees will be paid at the end of the year. 
  • Based on the review of high-demand titles, the Director of Collection Management will make strategic and informed collection building decisions for potential serial subscription, and after the calendar year review, the ILL/Document Delivery Coordinator in Access Services will initiate a payment to the Copyright Clearance Center for articles documented to be in “aggregate quantities as to substitute for a subscription.” 

For more information about OHSU use of Copyrighted Materials see OHSU Policy 12-70-005 (internal link). 

Reviewed and approved by OHSU Library leadership
Last reviewed: 18 August 2021