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GW Law Library
Research Guides

Services @ the Jacob Burns Law Library

Direct Borrowing from Burns Law Library

Students enrolled in a GW Law distance education course may borrow circulating books and materials in the library's collection.  Most treatises and books circulate.  Materials on reserve or course reserve or located in the ready reference or reference locations do not circulate; other materials may also not circulate due to library policies.

  • Submit a request for any Burns Law Library book via the your ILL account.  
  • If the book is available, the staff will obtain the book, check it out to you and send you an email notice that it is being shipped.  
  • If the book is unavailable, the staff will send your request to external libraries as an ILL request. 

Photocopy Request - Burns Law Library Collection

The Interlibrary loan staff will scan and deliver, via email, copies of articles and book excerpts from  electronic or print source owned by the Jacob Burns Law Library.  Restrictions apply.

  • Submit a request via your ILL account. 
  • You will receive the copy as a pdf to your law Gmail acocunt. 
  • Exclusions: Course reserves, special collections, fragile material, requests exceeding 100 pages and any other material that is used for a course.
  • All requests must comply with copyright laws and library policy. 
  • Copyright fee payment is the responsibility of the patron.
  • One article per journal; one chapter of a book or not more than 10% of an item.  
  • Request turnaround is between 1 -2 business days, when possible. 
  • If the item you request is not located in the library, the staff will submit your request for interlibrary resource sharing.  If the request is converted to an ILL request, turnaround time may be longer as it is dependent upon an external library.  

Interlibrary Loan

COVID-19 ALERT:  Go to the Interlibrary Resource Sharing libguide for information on obtaining books and scans from the Burns Law Library, Interlibrary loan and/or CLS.

Interlibrary loan is available to faculty, students and staff of the law school.  The service obtains material for you from institutions all over the world, if the material is not available at the Jacob Burns Law Library, Gelman Library or Himmelfarb Medical Library. Lending of material by other institutions is a courtesy.  Therefore, returning the items on time is important.  Late fees are assessed for books returned after the due date.   


Your ILL account

Current law students, faculty and staff automatically have an account in the interlibrary loan system.  

  • Access into the interlibrary loan system is through single sign-on with your law school userid/password
  • Update your ILL account with your mailing address.
  • Request ILL material by using the GW Law Library WorldCat Discovery catalog, locate the material and click on "request the item." 

Interlibrary Loan Resource Sharing Office

The Interlibrary Loan Resource office is open Monday - Friday; 9:00 am - 5:00 pm.  If you have a question, contact the department either by email (best method) or phone.  

Email (best method):

Phone: (202)994-4156

Consortium Loan Service (CLS)

COVID-19 ALERT:  Go to the Interlibrary Resource Sharing libguide for information on obtaining books and scans from the Burns Law Library, Interlibrary loan and/or CLS.


The library belongs to the Washington Resource Library Consortium (WRLC).  Students may borrow items from any of the libraries in the network.  Although students may borrow items from any of the libraries in the network, we recommend that distance education students use interlibrary loan to request materials not in the law library's collection.  In addition to the Jacob Burns Law Library, participating libraries include:   American University,  AU Pence Law Library, Catholic University, Gallaudet University, George Mason University, George Washington University Libraries, GW Himmelfarb Medical Library, Georgetown University, Georgetown Law Library, Howard University, Marymount University and the University of the District of Columbia.

Submitting a CLS request

  • All requests are submitted through the library catalog, Jacob.  
  • Sign in using your @law email credentials
  • Search for the item, using 'WRLC', and click on " CLS - 2 day request"  
  • Patrons are notified, via email, when the item is ready for pickup.
  • Return the item to the library circulation desk, on or before, the due date.  
  • Questions: Send an email to


  • Shipping: Students residing more than 30 miles from the campus can request items shipped to them. Send your mailing address via an email to or insert in the request notes.   You will only need to do this once and this address will be used for all subsequent requests.
  • Local pick up: For students living less than 30 miles from the campus the books are available for pickup at the library. Based on the date/time you receive the pickup email, the books will be available on Monday, Thursday and/or Friday, 9:00 am - 4:00 pm. As you come into the 716 20th St doors, look to your left.  There is a table for Grab & Go books.  Look for a package with your name on it.
  • Students: You are responsible for the costs of returning the item. Shipped returns must be by a trackable shipper service. Or you can drop off the items at the library.

Notice Warning of Copyright

Notice Warning of Copyright:

The copyright law of the United States (title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specific conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be “used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research.” If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of “fair use,” that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.