Policy and Procedures Governing the Acceptance and Processing of In-Kind Gifts

Policy Statement

It is the policy of the IUPUI University Library to only accept book donations when such acceptance furthers the mission of the University Library and when the intent of the donor can be reasonably and legally accommodated without undue stress upon the University Library’s resources, systems, and staff. The University Library will not accept book donations for which it cannot provide appropriate stewardship.

Specific collection interests include Philanthropic studies and the history, literature, geography, and people of central Indiana. Outdated textbooks, superceded editions, duplicate copies, material in foreign languages other than those taught at IUPUI, items in poor physical condition, and periodicals are not appropriate for addition to the collection.

Conditions of Acceptance

The University Library reviews all book donations prior to acceptance and reserves the right to decline an offer of material that is already held in the collections, that does not meet collection needs, or which the University Library cannot steward appropriately. In order to facilitate the library’s review, a bibliographic list may be requested of prospective donors. Donations will not be accepted without consultation with the appropriate subject librarian.

IUPUI University Library will make all necessary decisions as to book donations’ retention, location, cataloging, and other considerations related to their use and disposition. Special terms or conditions requested by the donor should be discussed with the Dean of the IUPUI University Library or his/her representative before the donation is accepted. Once a donation is transferred to the University Library, no part of it will be returned. Materials not suitable for the collection will be disposed of at the library’s discretion as will any donations received without prior review by the library.

Information posted on the University Library website will educate donors regarding the costs of accepting book donations. The library development officer will work with librarians and other staff coordinating solicited gifts to share this information with donors and when appropriate, solicit an additional (monetary) gift to cover such costs. Subject librarians should inform the library development officer if an in-kind gift- was solicited and accepted with a specific agreement not to cover processing costs.

Gifts Solicited by Other Units

Occasionally, another campus unit may enter into negotiations with a donor who has a collection of books or other items that he or she would like to contribute to the University Library in tandem with a financial or other gift to that unit. In these cases, the unit development officer should contact the University Library development officer to participate in the negotiations concerning the gift.

The University Library applies the same selection standards to these tandem gifts as it does to outright in-kind contributions made directly to the library. If the University Library can assist another unit by accepting a gift collection that expands the library’s scope in a significant way, and if there is scholarly value to the collection, and if the University Library has been involved in the negotiations for the gift, the Dean will give serious consideration to acceptance.

Credit for the value of the collection and for any financial gift to cover the expense of processing the collection will go to the University Library.

If a campus unit acquires books or other items as part of negotiations in which the University Library does not participate, the library may accept some or all of the items solely at its discretion and may require compensation for the expense of adding the items to the collection. Such compensation will be required to be deposited in whole in an IU Foundation account that the University Library will establish for the purpose. The University Library will not assume the duty of disposal of unwanted items.

If the University Library has not been involved in the negotiations, it is under no obligation to accept an in-kind contribution.

Assumption of Title

Materials become the property of the Board of Trustees of Indiana University when the donor signs a gift agreement conveying title, or when an authorized University Library representative takes possession. In the case of anonymous book donations, materials become the property of the Board of Trustees when they are received by the library.

Valuation of Proposed Gifts

In order to give donors the most current information and to be in compliance with the pertinent IUPUI, Indiana University Foundation, Internal Revenue Service, and State of Indiana regulations, library representatives should contact the University Library development officer before discussing tax deductions, gift valuation, gift appraisals, and shipping costs with a prospective donor.

Valuation of library-owned material or material under consideration for acceptance as a gift by the University Library, whether by staff or paid or unpaid representatives, is considered a conflict of interest. No references to price or value may be included in any correspondence or acknowledgement letter.

Gifts with an assumed or appraised value of over $1,000 or consisting of more than 100 volumes must be approved by the Dean of the IUPUI University Library before acceptance.

Review of Proposed Book Donations

It is the responsibility of subject librarians to review donations and offers to donate and to make selection decisions based on the collection development philosophies and policies of the library and of the subject area involved. Subject librarians should review the proposed donation by examining it at the donor’s point of keeping or by examining a bibliographic list that (ideally) includes condition statements about the items.

If materials are received directly by anyone other than the appropriate subject librarian, the materials received must be reviewed said subject librarian prior to addition to the collection.

Procedures for Receiving Selected Gifts

Any library liaison receiving a gift on behalf of the IUPUI University Library should submit a document detailing the gift to the library development office within one week of receipt of the gift. This confidential document conveys appropriate information to the development officer so that, first, an acknowledgement letter can be sent; second, that the gift will be recorded in the gift records of the Indiana University Foundation; and, third, that appropriate stewardship actions can be taken. The above mentioned document will include the donor’s name, address, number of items donated, and the date of the gift. Any correspondence received with the gift should be forwarded to the development office along with the completed document.

Prior to selecting and sending materials for cataloging, subject librarians will complete a gift cataloging form for each item, which is placed within or attached to the material being added. If a liaison is intentionally duplicating a title, that fact is to be recorded on the gift cataloging form. Paper bookplates or requests for electronic bookplates, if appropriate, are to be placed with the gift cataloging form before an item is sent for cataloging. Any other data, information, or instructions which the library liaison wishes to convey should be written on the gift cataloging form accompanying the item.

Once the gift cataloging forms are complete, the subject librarian will coordinate delivery of the materials to Bibliographic & Metadata Services (BAMS) with the Head of that department. Materials will then be cataloged according to the University Library’s approved cataloging priorities.

Acknowledgement and Record-keeping

All solicited gifts coming into the library must be acknowledged by the library development officer. Every effort will be made to send an acknowledgement letter to the donor within one week of receipt of the book donation. If the subject librarian also sends a letter, he/she should supply a copy to the library development officer within one week after sending the letter. Acknowledgement letters from subject librarians should be issued on IUPUI University Library stationery in standard business format.

The University Library development officer will be responsible for any further stewardship, keeping the subject librarian informed as appropriate. The development officer will maintain records of all acknowledgement letters.

The University Library development officer will complete a Gift-In-Kind Transmittal Form when a donor record already exists on the Indiana University Alumni/Foundation Information System. The recording of this type of gift allows the development officer to contact donors who would otherwise not be assigned to the University Library. Records may be created for new donors, as appropriate.

Disposal of Unwanted Items

Books and other gift materials are to be disposed of only after a decision has been made by a library liaison that the item is not needed for the collections at IUPUI University Library. The disposal of unwanted items falls into two categories: unappraised assets and appraised assets.

Unappraised Assets

Disposal of unappraised assets may be accomplished using the options summarized below. Any funds received as a consequence of the disposal of unappraised assets must be deposited into the IUPUI University Library materials budget.

Unwanted materials may be sold to booksellers or book dealers with any proceeds used to further enhance and develop the University Library’s collections. These sales must take place with appropriate authorization from the Dean of the IUPUI University Library. Unwanted items may also be offered to registered 501 (c) (3) non-profit organizations. When gift items are offered for sale, bookplates associated with donations to the IUPUI University Library must be removed or defaced prior to the sale.

Unwanted items may be disposed of through recycling. The University Library should choose this option only when other alternatives are inappropriate, e.g., the material is in poor physical condition or is a work of minimal intellectual or monetary value.

Unwanted materials which cannot be resold will be discarded at the libraries’ discretion.

In summary, the permissible options for the disposal of unwanted unappraised assets are limited to these options:

  • Unappraised assets may be sold to booksellers or book dealers. All financial proceeds must return to University Library accounts that support collections.
  • Unappraised assets may be sold to the general public at a library-sponsored book sale. All financial proceeds must return to University Library accounts that support collections.
  • Unappraised assets may be recycled.

Appraised Assets

The University Library development office will handle the processing of all paperwork in this category. The University Library development officer must be contacted before disposal takes place. Assets given to the University Library with an appraisal that generates an IRS 8283 form for the donor’s tax deduction must be held by the University Library for two years before disposal. If the items will be disposed of before the two-year period ends, an amended IRS 8282 form must be issued to the donor, an action which may have negative tax consequences for the donor. The University Library development office will then have to ensure that a revised asset form is filed with the Indiana University Department of Capital Assets.

Appraised collections may not be accepted if less than 50% of the titles will be added to the collection

The burden of appraisal is always on the donor. In compliance with IRS directives, under no circumstances will University Library staff or any of its paid or unpaid representatives provide an appraisal of a gift.