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Fines and Lost Items

Why Do We Have Fines?

We charge fines on some materials so that everyone can continue to access the resources we share. The library is for all of us, and these fines encourage us to be considerate to each other.

What Fines Do We Charge?

We charge fines on late returns. If an item is permanently lost, or damaged beyond repair that it requires replacement, we charge a fee to replace it. The amount we charge depends on the item.

  • Books and DVDs: No fine for late return. $100 replacement fee ($65 for item cost, $35 for processing fee).
  • Interlibrary Loans: $1 fine per day late. $100 minimum replacement fee or cost of item.
  • Laptops: $1500 replacement fee. $70 replacement fee for lost power adapter, $35 processing fee.
  • Other library technology (calculators, digital cameras, etc.): Replacement fee equal to cost of the item.
  • Other lost items: $30 replacement fee for Mac computer VGA adapter. $60 replacement fee for Mac computer mouse.

  • 60 days for general collection items, including books
  • 30 days for laptops and power adapters
  • 14 days for audio/visual materials, including DVDs and CDs

When an item is considered lost, you are billed for it. For example, if you do not return a laptop within 30 days of the due date, it is marked lost in our system. If you still have the laptop and return it, we remove the lost item bill. If you do not return the laptop and do not pay the lost item bill in the library, we transfer that outstanding balance to student accounts.

How does billing work?

Before we transfer an outstanding balance, we will email you to let you know that we will be transferring a library outstanding balance to student accounts. You will have 7 days from the date of that email to return the item or pay the balance. Once the balance is transferred to student accounts, they will have 30 days to return the item or pay the lost item bill.

Pay Online

Login to your library account and click "Pay Fine."

You can also view the Pay Your Library Fines Online tutorial for more assistance.

For questions about online payments, contact librarybilling@uncc.edu.

Pay In-Person

Visit the Information and Research Desk on the first floor of Atkins Library. Pay with cash, check, or a debit/credit card. For fines under $1, we can only accept cash.

Request a Search for a Lost Item

Sometimes, your account may say you have an item checked out even after you return it. In most cases, like when you return a book to a book drop, your account should update in the next one or two business days. Otherwise, if you believe the item was returned without properly updating your account, we’ll investigate.

Request a search for a returned item to start the process. We’ll search the library and let you know if we find the misfiled item. While we search (for up to one week), we won’t add fines to your account. If we find it, we’ll update your account and waive any fines you may have received related to that item.

For questions or feedback about this process, email librarystacks@uncc.edu.

Appeal Your Fine

If you want to appeal your fine, request a fine review online or complete a fine review form at the Information and Research Desk on the first floor of Atkins Library. We can no longer review fine appeals after the fine has been transferred to student accounts or payroll.

Yes, in some cases. We may be able to waive your replacement fees if you’re able to return a lost item from your account. Contact us as librarybilling@uncc.edu for help with that process.

For books, you may also choose to directly replace the lost item rather than pay the replacement fee. You may also replace the lost item to receive a partial refund on a replacement fee you already paid. To do this, see the following conditions:

  • You must request permission from the Patron Services Manager before purchasing a replacement to qualify. Email circdesk@uncc.edu to begin.
  • We must receive the replacement no more than 6 months after the original was due.
  • The replacement must be in new condition.
  • The ISBN of the replacement must match the original.

If these conditions apply, we’ll issue a partial refund of $65 to your student account. We can’t refund the $35 processing fee. The replacement item will become property of the university.