THE COLLECTION AGENCY PROCESS
In general, when a patron allows their account to become delinquent, their name, address, date of birth, patron record
number, social security number, phone number, patron type and amount owed is sent to Unique Management Services, a
collection agency that serves libraries. Unique contacts the patron, via letters and phone calls, and “gently” (no strong-
arming), urges the patron to settle their account.
Every Tuesday, usually before 10:00 a.m., the IT Department runs the Collection Agency Report program. This program
looks for patrons meeting ALL of the following criteria:
Overdue 60 or more days
Total amount due is $25.00 or more
Patron type must be one of the following: 1-Adult; 2-Business Member; 3-Business Paid; 4-CH Adult; 5-CH
Business; 6-CH Juvenile; 7-County Agency; 8-County Employee; 9-Courtesy; 10-Event; 11-Juvenile; 12-Library
Staff; 13-Literacy NonMem; 14-NonProfit Org; 15-Paid Adult; 16-Paid Juvenile; 17-Paid Senior; 18-Senior
Citizen; 19-Well Baby
When these criteria are met, the MBLOCK field in the patron record is changed to “c-COLL AGCY.” The patron
information is then entered into a report of new collection agency accounts.
The program also looks at patrons who already had an MBLOCK “c” to see if there was any financial activity on the
account (increases or decreases to the previously reported amount owed). Collection Agency accounts with financial
activity are included in a report of accounts to be updated.
These reports are then sent to Unique Management Services.
Because reports are sent on Tuesdays before 10:00 a.m., if a patron pays their account in full at 1pm that same day, Unique
will not be aware of it until the following Tuesday when the report is run again. In the meantime, is possible that the patron
will be contacted by Unique. It is strongly suggested that you tell the patron that they may hear from Unique one
more time until their updated account information is sent. After that, if they continue to hear from Unique, they
should call Voorhees and speak to Mary Sims. Mary can verify that the patron’s account is paid in full and contact
Unique to stop further action.
Staff must NEVER remove the MBLOCK "c" from a patron's record. Because the program looks for this MBLOCK, if it is
removed improperly the account will be overlooked and Unique will not be notified that the account was paid.
If the MBLOCK needs to be removed, you can do one of 3 things:
1. Wait until Tuesday when the report is run. This process will remove the MBLOCK "c" from any patron's record
as necessary. The patron’s name is then sent to Unique with the new amount owed. If the amount is $0.00, Unique
will remove them from their records. In the meantime, you may OVERRIDE transactions in the patron’s account
to allow check-outs.
2. Inform Mary Sims that the MBLOCK "c" needs to be removed from the patron's account. There is a special
procedure that she follows, in the INNOPAC, which will remove the block and still allow the account information
to be reported to Unique. Again, when the report is run on Tuesday mornings, this patron’s updated account
information will be sent to Unique.
3. Inform Mary Sims as described in #2 and request that she contact Unique to update them immediately of the
patron’s financial status. We don’t want Mary calling Unique for every patron so only do this in extreme
NOTE: It is possible for a patron to arrange for payments to be made (must be approved by a senior staff person) on their
account. In doing so, contact Mary Sims requesting that Unique suspend activity on that account. The patron would still
have and MBLOCK “c” and not able to check-out items until their account is paid in full. The staff person would have to
monitor the patron’s record to make sure payments are being made. If the patron is not paying as agreed, contact Mary
Sims requesting that Unique resume collection activity.