Policy on Withdrawing Materials on Request

The library occasionally receives requests from authors, publishers, disseminators, or previous owners of library materials that the library withdraw, destroy, or return particular items in its collection.

This policy applies to materials in any format.

Most requests will be refused, in keeping with the library’s stewardship commitment to preserve its collections. Some library collection materials are held under agreements that govern return, withdrawal, or destruction of those materials and these commitments will be upheld.

Requests to return donated special collections materials should be directed to the Associate University Librarian for Special Collections. Requests to return donated general collection materials will be refused.

The library may choose to document the perceived problem that generated the request for return or withdrawal to inform potential users in the catalog record and possibly also in or on the item itself.

Ultimate responsibility for the decision on whether to return, destroy, or delete collection materials rests with the Associate University Librarian for Scholarly Resources and/or the Associate University Librarian for Special Collections, in consultation as needed with the Library Executive Committee and the Office of General Counsel for Yale University.

Approved by Collection Steering Committee, January 13, 2021
Adapted from Cornell University Library's Policy on Returning or Destroying Materials on Request

Last modified: 
Wednesday, February 2, 2022 - 3:31pm