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Q: overdue books ( Answered,   4 Comments )
Subject: overdue books
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: todd777-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 18 Feb 2005 14:45 PST
Expires: 20 Mar 2005 14:45 PST
Question ID: 476811
I have library books that are 4 months overdue from my alumni which I
no longer attend. The fine is over 1000 dollars. How do I get out from
paying that ridiculous amount? ( The old alumni and my current school
are both California State Universities)
Subject: Re: overdue books
Answered By: librariankt-ga on 22 Feb 2005 09:54 PST
Hi Todd,

This fee most likely includes the following items:

overdue fee (accrued on a daily basis, may be limited to a cap)
processing/handling fee (for sending out the overdue notices, etc)
replacement book fee 

You do not indicate how many books you have out from your alma mater,
but I would guess about 10, based on a standard calculation of $10 cap
on overdue fees, $10 processing fee, $80 replacement cost.

If you return the books before they are replaced the library should
waive the replacement fee, which would bring your cost per book down
to about $20 per item.  I'd urge you to go ahead and do that as soon
as possible, so that the library doesn't have time to replace the
items you're holding.  Every library differs, but librarians (I speak
from experience) tend to be very strict about their collections.

Also know that libraries are increasingly calling collection agencies
and credit bureaus to report delinquent borrowers and to get their
materials returned.  You are risking this action if you hold onto
these books.

Here are the fees policies for 

Cal State LA:

Cal Poly Pomona:

CSU East Bay:

CSU Northridge:

CSU Long Beach:

I found the above by doing a search in Google for "California State
University" library, then looking at each library's homepage for their
policy on overdue/lost books.

Good luck!

Subject: Re: overdue books
From: nelson-ga on 18 Feb 2005 15:35 PST
So you deprived some other student of the use of those books?

I find it sacry that a college student does not know the proper
meaning of alumni.  Are you thinking alam mater, perhaps?
Subject: Re: overdue books
From: dancingbear-ga on 18 Feb 2005 15:36 PST
One easy thing to check is if the  library in question has ever had-
and plans to have in the future an amnesty period.  Many libraries do
this periodically to retrieve their assets and wash away the gult of
the members who were delinquent.  I have heard of some libraries doing
this annually- others much more infrequently.  If a general amnesty
day is not an option, why not contact the library directly and ask
them what you- or a hypothetical "you" should do.  My guess is it is
more important to get the books back- UNLESS....the stakes are higher
and they are withholding something important to you- like grades or a
diploma.  In that Case- you may have to cough it up- and at least get
the books back ASAP so as not to accrue continued fines.
Subject: Re: overdue books
From: tessier-ga on 19 Feb 2005 23:41 PST
Assuming that the fines are totalling over 1000 dollars, you are
accruing new fines at the rate of 8 dollars / day. You don't state the
number of books you have checked out, but I would assume between 4 and
32. Either that or the books carry some special fines due to their
status. If you have no intention of paying the fine, you could sneak
the books back into the library and reshelve them, wait a while (days
or weeks) and then claim that you had returned the books and that the
library had for some reason failed to correctly check the books back
in properly. Unless they have video surveillance (and who doesn't
these days?) proof most likely lies with them. The details are left
with you. If the fines were lower, the stakes, and thus the likely
response of the library, would proably be more favorable. The basis
for this 'scheme' is that I have had books reshelved without being
checked back in one more thatn one occasion. I did not attempt to do
this purposely, however. Doing this intentionally is (1) morally
wrong, (2) wrong, and (3) just plain wrong.

Get the books back to the library. Call and see if the library will
consider a more reasonable fine. There is no way to know unless you
ask. As one of the other commentators stated, if the university has
leverage in the form of withheld honors, you are at a disadvantage,
but there is guaranteed end-result either favorable or unfavorable.
Subject: Re: overdue books
From: leep-ga on 20 Feb 2005 01:43 PST
Where did you get the $1000 amount from?

Some libraries will consider the book "lost" after a certain amount of
time has passed and then charge you a certain dollar amount.   Is this
what has happened to you?  If so, return the books as libraries
usually "credit" you for the returned book and give you some smaller
fee instead.

Also, if you owe a lot of money, the library will likely allow you to
set up a payment plan (i.e. $75/month).   Call them and ask about
their policies without telling them who are you.

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