National Archives of the Netherlands (Ministry of Education, Culture and Science)

Alienation

When archives or archival records that are destined for transfer and preservation in an archival repository are, for certain reasons, given to another party, this is known as ‘alienation’. Alienation is infrequent in the archival world. The State Archives Service must give permission before alienation can take place and government archival records are moved between different municipal, provincial, or central archival repositories. The State Archives Service plays here an exceptional role in caring for all types of government records, not only those of the State.
An example:
In the past a number of local authorities in the province of Zuid-Holland entrusted their archives to the National Archive for safe keeping.  Since 1995 the National Archive has been returning them to their original owners. The alienation of government archives is a legal duty arising out of the 1995 Archives Act and was designed to stimulate the distribution of the historical and cultural heritage to enable local research.
Different rules apply to private archives. These archives can only be alienated when they have been deposited, not loaned. Alienation occurs through termination of the existing agreement and the archive is handed back to the family or the original owner.