Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure the fair and consistent application of the Hennepin County Library Board Lending Policy and define the patron requirements for obtaining (or registering) a library card for use at the Hennepin County Library.

Patron and Staff Responsibilities

Patrons will:

  • Be responsible for all material checked out on their cards and for any charges that are incurred.
  • Maintain accurate contact information (name, address, phone, email) in library account.
  • Notify the Library immediately if card is lost or stolen.

Staff will:

  • Develop the necessary procedures for effective administration of this policy and delivery of patron service. This will include but is not limited to procedures for providing library cards to minors.
  • Exercise their best judgment when interpreting and applying this policy to deliver good, consistent patron service.
  • Inform patrons of borrowing privileges and responsibilities (e.g. library lending rules, fees, and fines) when issuing a library card.
  • Strive to ensure that each library patron has just one library card account.
  • Work to maintain the accuracy of the library card database. ILS staff will delete library card accounts if the accounts have not been used in three years. Accounts that have outstanding fines and fees attached will however remain on file.

Library Card Eligibility, Application and Registration Requirements

Individuals and organizations may obtain (or register) a library card for use at the Hennepin County Library if the following eligibility, application and registration requirements are met.

  1. All Hennepin County residents and employees and non-resident Hennepin County property taxpayers are eligible for a free Hennepin County Library Card.
  2. Minnesota residents not residing in Hennepin County may register their library card (if it is issued by one of the Minnesota regional public library systems) for use at Hennepin County Library.
  3. Residents of Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Ramsey, Scott, and Washington counties (with the exception of Lake Elmo residents) and residents of St. Paul may apply at Hennepin County Library for a library card which is then issued from their appropriate MELSA library system.
  4. Non-Minnesota residents or Minnesota residents whose public library is not a member of one of the regional public library systems may receive a Hennepin County Library Card for an annual fee.
  5. Organizations and businesses located in Hennepin County may apply for a free Hennepin County Library Organization Card.
Library Cards: Application and Registration
Application and Registration Requirements for Individuals
Eligible Parties Application/Registration Requirements Borrowing Limitations (if applicable)

Hennepin County residents (adults and minors) with permanent address

Proof of residency is required.

Applications may be completed in person or submitted online via the Library's website.

In person applications:

  • Patron presents identification with current address (e.g. driver’s license, checkbook, evidence of mail received at current address)
  • Students may present a student picture ID and current address; receives card and full borrowing privileges.
  • If patron does not present identification at time of application, application will be processed and the card mailed to patron to verify address. Limited borrowing privileges are imposed.

Online applications:

  • Patron completes online form and library card is mailed to patron to verify address.

Patron may check out no more than 2 items if identification requirements are not met at time of application.

Full borrowing privileges begin when patron presents library card for next check out.

Hennepin County residents (adults and minors) with no permanent address

Applications must be completed in person.

  • Address requirements are waived and limited borrowing privileges are extended.
  • The address of the library where the patron is applying is used as the patron’s address in his/her account.
  • Patron email address is entered if available so he/she can be notified when requested material is available

Library card expires 12 months after issue date.(May be renewed if necessary)

A limit of 10 items may be checked out at any given time.

Non-resident Hennepin County employees

Patron must present proof of Hennepin County employment.

In person and online applications are accepted. For online application, the library card is mailed to customer.

Library card expires 12 months after issue date.

Library card may be renewed if application requirements are verified.

Non-resident Hennepin County property taxpayers

Patron must present proof (e.g. recent tax statement) of eligibility.

Minnesota residents served by one of the MELSA member library systems:

 

  • Anoka County
  • Carver County
  • Dakota County
  • Ramsey County
  • Scott County
  • St. Paul
  • Washington County*

 

*Lake Elmo residents are not a part of the Washington County Library system effective 01/01/2012

Minnesota residents served by MELSA may register their existing library card for use at Hennepin County Library.

Registrations may be completed in person or online.

In person patron presents valid library card issued by one of the MELSA member library systems and provides identification to verify name and address.

Online patron completes online form and enters library card barcode number from home library.

If no identification is available at time of registration to verify library card holder, patron is limited to checking out 2 items.

Borrowing privileges begin when patron presents address verification.

Checkout of downloadable content is not allowed.

Minnesota residents served by MELSA may apply for a library card which is then issued by the home library system (within 60 days)

Applications may be submitted in person or online.

In person patron presents identification and completes MELSA application form.

Online patron completes online form; identification will be required at time of first check out.

Patron may check out two items at time of in person application

Borrowing privileges begin when patron presents the library card issued by the home library system and satisfies the identification requirement (either at the time of application or at time of checkout).

Checkout of downloadable content is not allowed.

Minnesota residents (outside of the metro area) who are served by one of the Minnesota regional public library systems

Library cards issued by a Minnesota regional public library system may be registered for use at the Hennepin County Library.

Registrations may be completed in person or initiated online.

In person patron presents valid library card issued by one of Minnesota’s regional public library system and provides identification to verify name and address.

Online patron completes online form and enters library card barcode number from home library system. Registration will be completed within two weeks.

If patron does not have a library card, patron is referred back to his/her home library system to initiate the application process.

If no identification is available to verify library card holder, patron is limited to checking out 2 items.

Borrowing privileges begin when patron presents address verification.

Checkout of downloadable content is not allowed.

Non-Minnesota residents or Minnesota residents whose public library is not a member of one of the regional public library systems

Patrons who are ineligible to apply for or register a free library card may obtain a Hennepin County Library card for an annual fee.

Applications must be completed in person

Fee-based cards are intended to allow patrons to borrow physical materials and are not to be used exclusively for remote access to subscription databases.

Checkout of downloadable content is not allowed.

Library card expires 12 months after issue date.

 

Application and Registration Requirements for Organizations
Eligible Parties Application/Registration Requirements Borrowing Limitations (if applicable)

Organizations and businesses located in Hennepin County

Applications must be submitted online.

  • Contact person for the organization submits the online application form and is the responsible party for all items checked out on that account.
  • Library card and regulations for use are mailed to contact person.
  • Multiple cards may be issued on the same account to allow for more than one person to checkout material on behalf of an organization.

Library card expires 12 months after issue date.

Cards may be renewed pending confirmation of organization name, address, and contact person.

Up to 100 items may be checked out at one time.

Remote access to HCL subscription databases is intended for individual use, remote access for organization card holders is not allowed.

Checkout of downloadable content is not allowed.


 

Associated Library Board and Library Administrative Policies

Process

This administrative policy is reviewed at least every three (3) years by the Library Services Division Manager (or designee) in conjunction with the Hennepin County Library Board’s review of the Lending Policy. Upon completion of the review, this policy is revised or reaffirmed.

Policy History

Next review: 12/01/2014
Last reviewed/revised: 12/22/2011
Adopted: 01/14/2010