Setting up a Processing Fee and Default Replacement Cost per Item Type 2

In this Koha tutorial we will cover the ability to add a processing fee and set a default replacement cost by itemtype. We were so excited to share this new enhancement!  This bug was pushed to the 17.11 upgrade, but we couldn’t wait nor did we want you to wait either!  

Libraries have wanted a way to charge their patrons a processing fee on their account separate from the replacement cost and without having to do it manually. In addition to this, now there is a way to add a default price for items in a specific item type which will be used if no dollar amount is set up for the specific item. 

The Bug 12768 : the ability to add a processing fee and also to set a default replacement cost by item type.

Here are the steps for setting this new double enhancement:

  • First we need to add the desired processing fee and default replacement cost to a specific item type.  The library can choose to do both processing fees and default replacement costs or either.  
  • Go to Administration Module, under Item types.  
  • Choose an Item Type to Edit
  • There are now two new fields when editing or creating a new item type:

Default Replacement Cost

Processing Fee (when Lost)


The Default Replacement Cost will be used when a specific item in this item type does not have a replacement cost assigned.  Enter a dollar amount in this field. The default replacement cost will be charged to patron’s account when the item has been changed to lost.  (see more details below)

The Processing Fee (when lost) is the amount that will be charged to the patron’s account when this item type is changed to lost.  This field is for a dollar amount.  On the patron’s account a separate line item will be added for this processing fee.

New System Preferences

Working in conjunction with these new fields in the Item Type set up are two new system preferences.

  • UseDefaultReplacementCost:  Use/Don’t use the default replacement cost defined in item type.
  • ProcessingFeeNote:  to set the text  that will populate in the column note, table, accountlines when the processing fee is applied. (This is a free text box)

There are two ways that both the processing fee and default replacement cost will be charged to the patron’s account.  

  1. If your library has the “” script running on your Koha -which works the system preferences:  DefaultLongoverdueChargeValue, 
  2. When an item’s status is set to “lost” – through the item tab.  See Rocio’s blog post for more information!  

Screen shot of the Processing fee and Lost Item fee on a patron’s Fine tab:

Screen shot of the processing fee and the processingfeenote from the system preferences in the Account Tab.


Note:  The added lines in the item types : processing free (when lost) and default replacement cost can work separately and do not need both be enabled.  Your library can choose to only use the processing fee or the default replacement cost.  Also, if you have the system preferences enabled but no dollar amount set up in the item type- the fines/fees won’t be charged.  

For more Koha Tips and Tricks – please visit this link at!

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2 thoughts on “Setting up a Processing Fee and Default Replacement Cost per Item Type

  • Jen Schmidt

    Thanks for all of the great ByWater tutorials you send out. Can you relay if making this setting 1.) will apply to all branches using the given item type (I’m thinking yes….); and 2.) if setting this in ADMIN only applies to new item records and does NOT update older, existing item records having that given item type…. Is that correct?

    • Kelly McElligott Post author

      Hi Jen,

      Thanks for your feedback! To answer your questions : (1) yes – each branch that uses the same item type would use the same default replacement cost – so you will have to agree 😉 (2) This change will be effective to all items because when that item is changed to lost or the long overdue script is run it is looking the cost information. So the script or processing of changing the item to “lost” will check the items table and will either find the cost in the item itself or look at the item type table. Please let me know if you have more questions, there are great details in the actual bug that the developers put in to help :