Library Use Policy
To borrow materials from the Texas State Law Library you must become a registered patron.
The applicant must:
- Be physically present in the library to complete the application
- Be a resident of Texas or employed by a Texas state agency
- Present a government-issued photo ID displaying the patron's current address or a photo ID and (1) a current utility bill or (2) a voter's registration card displaying the patron's current address.
Upon completion of the application, the applicant will receive a library card that expires one year from the date of application. The card remains property of the Texas State Law Library and must be surrendered upon request.
Patrons who have previously registered at a Texas state agency consortium member library (e.g., the Texas State Library and Archives) must complete the law library's registration application and agree to be bound by the Texas State Law Library's terms for borrowing law library materials.
Patrons must have their library card or a form of valid photo ID to check out items or to use the library's computers. The library will supply one replacement card free of charge, additional replacement cards will cost $5.00.
Most library materials have a circulation period of 3 weeks. The remaining materials either circulate overnight or are part of our reference collection. Items in our reference collection are only available for use in the library. Items that circulate overnight are due before closing the following business day.
One renewal is permitted for items that circulate for 3 weeks unless a hold is placed on the borrowed material.
Renewals may be done in person or over the phone (from 8am to 4:45pm). Renewals on overdue books will result in late fees.
No renewals for overnight items.
The Texas State Law Library charges circulation fees. The circulation fees are:
- $1 per item borrowed; or
- $60 per person per year for unlimited circulation
Texas state employees are exempt from circulation fees.
All patrons are responsible for administrative fees and replacement costs.
Patrons are responsible for all material borrowed on their card and for returning that material on time. Patrons are responsible for any fines or fees they incurred.
Fines are calculated from the material's due date until the material is returned. Fines are 50 cents per day per item borrowed and continue to accrue until the item is returned. The maximum fine is $12.50 per item. Fines do not accrue on days when the library is closed. Once the item has reached the maximum late fine, the item is considered lost, and the patron will be charged for the item.
Patrons will be barred from checking out additional materials and will not be allowed to use library computers until their fines have been paid. The Texas State Law Library reserves the right to ban patrons for abuse of library policies.
As a courtesy, the library mails notices informing patrons of the overdue status of materials borrowed. The library is not responsible for misdirected notices sent to patrons who have not verified or updated their address in our patron records.
Lost Book Invoices
Patrons will be charged for materials that are considered lost.
The following fees are assessed:
- Up to $12.50 in late fines;
- $100 or actual replacement cost of the material borrowed (whichever is greater); and
- $15 administrative fee (non-refundable)
Failure to return materials and pay all associated fees will result in the suspension of the patron's library privileges (including computer use) until the matter is resolved. Failure to return library materials may also result in criminal prosecution.
Holds may be placed on circulating materials. Any material in circulation is subject to recall after the initial check-out period.
- The Texas State Law library provides five computers for public use.
- Computers are available for patron use between 8:00a and 4:30p.
- Computers #1 through #4 are available for legal research.
- Computer #5 is available only for access to the library catalog.
- Patrons may access a computer using their own library card, as long as their account is in good standing.
- Patrons must work with library staff to clear any account problems in order to have their access to library computers restored.
- Depending upon availability, patrons may access computers for up to 120 minutes per day. A user may sign in for one 60 minute session or they may sign in multiple times per day, spreading out the allotted 120 minutes over the course of one day.
- Additional time will not be provided by library staff.
- Users may make one reservation per day (with staff assistance), for any available computer, for a session up to 60 minutes. Future reservations may be made up to 5 days in advance.
- Patrons cannot make a reservation for a specific computer.
- Reservations will be automatically cancelled for users who are 10 minutes late for their reservation. Library staff cannot hold a reservation.
- Users may "lock" a computer while in use if they need to step away from the computer for a few minutes. The "lock" will only last as long as the user has time left. Additional time will not be provided by library staff.
- Computers and their associated chairs are reserved for patrons using the computers.
- Two patron workstations have software installed for use by patrons with visual impairments. Patrons may be asked to vacate these computers if another patron needs to use this software. If this happens, staff will move the current user to another computer.
- Patrons wishing to listen to audio on the library's computers must use their own headphones.
The Texas State Law Library reserves the right to change this policy at any time.