Borrowing Policy & Fine-Free

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Borrowing Policy & Fine-Free

Jump to: Due Dates & RenewalsReturning Items

Cards for Lake Forest Residents

Lake Forest Library cards are free of charge to all Lake Forest residents. Proof of identity and Lake Forest residency is required at the time of application. Cards are valid as long as the Cardholder remains a Lake Forest resident. Students attending and residing in the dormitories at Lake Forest College are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card at no charge. The card will be valid from September through May and may be renewed without charge at start the following academic year.

Cardholders may annotate their card records for purposes of allowing family members or caretakers the ability to pick up reserved or held items, pay fines or fees, renew items, or verify account balances or items checked out.

Nonresident Cards

Nonresidents may purchase a Lake Forest Library card for the cost of taxpayer support. The annual fee reflects the amount paid in taxes by the average city family for library services, based on the State Library formula, or shall exceed it. The fee is set annually by the Lake Forest Library Board. This card entitles the Cardholder to all Lake Forest Library privileges. Immediate family members residing in the same household may be added to the card as authorized users. Proof of identity and home address is required. No refunds will be issued for non-use. Cards are valid for one year.

Reciprocal Borrowing for Non-Lake Forest Residents

Cardholders residing within the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS) with a valid library card from their home library can register for privileges at Lake Forest Library. Presentation of home library card and proof of home address is required.

Taxpayer Non-Resident Cards

Those who own property in Lake Forest, but do not reside in Lake Forest, are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card. The most recent property tax bill showing the owner’s name and property address is required at the time of application. Proof of identity and of home address is also required. Cards issued are valid for one year. The library card is good only at Lake Forest Library and may not be used as a reciprocal card at other libraries.

Business Cards

Businesses located in Lake Forest or who are members of the Lake Forest Chamber of Commerce are eligible for a Business Library card. Proof of identity and address such as a current utility bill or property tax bill is required at the time of application. Cards are valid for one year.

Caregiver/Nanny Cards

Lake Forest residents with a valid Lake Forest Library card may add a nanny, au pair, or caregiver as a user. The Lake Forest resident will be responsible for all materials checked out on the card and for any and all assessed fines and fees.

City Employee Cards

Employees of the City of Lake Forest are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card. Proof of identity and Lake Forest employment is required at the time of application. Proof of address such as a current utility bill or property tax bill is required at the time of application.

Teacher Cards/School Cards

All teachers in local schools are entitled to the full benefits of the Lake Forest Library and teachers are encouraged to register their local library card and achieve reciprocal borrowing privileges at the Lake Forest Library. To further enable this support, Lake Forest Library cards are issued to the institution upon completion and submission of a letter request. Institutions should contact the Head of Circulation for the form and requirements.

Linked Cards

Cardholders may have their cards linked to other family members for purposes of picking up reserved or held items, paying fines or fees, renewing items, or verifying account balances or items checked out.

Replacement Cards

Replacement cards will be issued for lost or damaged Library cards at replacement cost. Cardholders remain liable for materials borrowed on a lost card until notice of the loss is provided to the Library and the card cancelled.

Responsibility for Card Use

Cardholders are responsible for all use of their card (or cards to which they are responsible) unless the card is reported as lost or stolen to the Library.

Expiration of Cards

Unless otherwise noted, all Lake Forest Library cards issued to an adult over the age of 18 automatically expire every three years. The account must be in good standing and proof of identity and residency must be presented to reactivate expired cards. Inactive library cards in good standing are deleted every three years as part of ongoing database maintenance. Cards issued to patrons under the age of 18 expire on the Cardholder's 18 birthday, at which point the 18-year old may sign the application accepting responsibility for their own card.

Forgotten Card

Cardholders who wish to borrow library materials without their cards may be asked for identification.

Returned Items

An item containing multiple parts cannot be checked in until all the parts are returned. If a part is lost or damaged, the entire item will be considered lost and the replacement cost will be assessed. When possible, the Library will attempt to replace the lost or damaged part and assess the Cardholder a fee based on the replacement option.

The Cardholder will be responsible for damage occurring to items marked with special return instructions if the return instructions are not followed. For example, an item marked "Please do not return this item in the book drop" is found damaged in the outside book drop.

Damaged Items

Cardholders are responsible for damage to items they borrow including cases, containers, parts, security strips or additional contents. Damaged items are billed to the patron account at the replacement cost. The damaged item will be offered to the patron to keep. Replacement copies are not accepted in lieu of payment. The Library is not responsible for any damage to a user's personal equipment, such as a DVD player or video game console, as the result of the use of library materials.

Lost Items

Items not returned after being overdue for 45 days will be considered lost and the Cardholder account billed. Cardholders are responsible for lost items including cases, containers, parts, or additional contents. Lost items are billed to the patron account at the replacement cost. Replacement copies are not accepted in lieu of payment. The lost item may not be returned at a later date for a refund.

Materials Recovery

Cardholders who fail to either return or pay for borrowed materials may be submitted to an attorney for further action. Attorney fees and other materials recovery costs will be assessed to the Cardholder.

Lake Forest Library is fine free on most materials (see exceptions in Loan Periods, Limits, Renewals, Holds, and Fine Table below). Each item still has a due date and Cardholders are responsible for honoring the due date. If an item is more than two weeks (14 days) overdue after all permitted renewals are exhausted, Cardholders will be restricted and will not be able to check out any additional items. Once the item is returned, the restriction is removed from the Cardholder's account.

Cardholders will be blocked and not be able to check out any additional items if the account

  • has accumulated fees and charges in excess of $10;
  • has lost items on the account ;
  • is associated with an account that is blocked;
  • when combined with an associated account that has accumulated fees and charges in excess of $10 or has lost items on the account.

When another library informs the Lake Forest Library that a Lake Forest Cardholder is delinquent at that library, no service will be available at Lake Forest Library until such delinquency is cleared.

A Cardholder's library card will be revoked it if is determined that the card was obtained fraudulently. For example, using an incorrect address or name.

Library materials are loaned, renewed, and holdable as set forth below:

Item Loan Period Renewals Holdable Checkout Limits Fines/Day
Books & Audiobooks 21 Days 2 Yes None
Most Wanted items 7 Days 1 No None
Hot Items 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Audiobooks & Playaways 21 Days 2 Yes None
NEW Feature Film DVDs 7 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Feature Film DVDs 7 Days 2 Yes None
NEW DVD Series 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
DVD Series 14 Days 2 Yes None
DVD2GO movies 3 Days 0 Can be reserved up to 12 hours prior to pickup 20
NEW Nonfiction DVDs 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Nonfiction DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes None
Great Courses DVDs and CDs 21 Days 2 Yes None
NEW Video Games (excluding Nintendo Switch) 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Video Games (excluding Nintendo Switch) 21 Days 1 Yes None
NEW Nintendo Switch video games 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Nintendo Switch video games 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Music CDs 21 Days 2 Yes None
Magazines 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Takeout Tech items (Circulate only to Lake Forest residents) 14 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents 1 per type, 3 total $2.00
NEW Children's DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Children's DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes None
Launchpads and Views 21 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Exploration Kits 21 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Children's Puzzles, Puppets, Toys 21 Days 2 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Golden Tote Bags 21 days 3 No None

See CCS Consortium Member Library Loans and Interlibrary Loan Materials below for loan periods and fines associated with these materials.

Auto-Renewals

The Library's ILS system will attempt to renew items three days prior to the date the item is due. Renewable items will automatically renew provided there is a renewal option available and no one has placed a hold on the item.

CCS Consortium Member Library Loans

Loans from CCS Consortium Member Libraries (Intra-CCS Loans) are subject to the loan periods and fines of the lending library. CCS Consortium Member Library loans may be returned to any member library. The Lake Forest Library fine free policy applies to CCS Consortium Member Library materials checked out at Lake Forest Library. Cardholders are liable for lost or damaged materials as assessed by the owning CCS Consortium Member Library.

Availability of Materials

No materials may be taken out of the Library until they have been completely processed.

Maximum Checkouts

Lake Forest Library Cardholders may check out up to 100 items on their card.

Lake Forest residents with a valid Lake Forest Library card may request materials from other libraries that are not part of the CCS Consortium. Materials borrowed via interlibrary loan are subject to the circulation rules of the lending library, including renewals, overdue fines and fees, and in-library use limitations. Cardholders are responsible for all fines and fees associated with interlibrary loan materials, including replacement costs for lost and damaged materials. Requests for interlibrary loan materials may be made at the Adult Services desk.

Approved December 10, 2019, amending and incorporating the following policies: Business Patrons, City Employee Patrons, Damaged Materials Policy, Fines, Forgotten Card Policy, Loan Periods, Limits, Renewals, and Holds Policy, Lost or Damaged Patron Cards Policy, Lost Books and Other Materials Policy, Reference Collection Policy, Rental Collection Policy, Resident and Non-resident Patron Policy, and Teacher Patrons.

Suspension of Borrowing Privileges

Lake Forest Library is fine-free on most materials (excluding Takeout Tech items). Each item still has a due date and cardholders are responsible for honoring the due date.

If an item is more than 14 days overdue after all renewals are exhausted, your library card is restricted and you will not be able to check out any more items. Once the item is returned, the restriction is removed.

Your library card will also be restricted if:

  • Your account has accumulated fees and charges in excess of $10
  • You have a lost item on your account
  • Your account is associated with an account that is restricted

For more information, please refer to the Library's Borrowing Policy on this page.

Details on Potential Fees

If you accrue fees on your account, you can pay in cash at the Library circulation desks or online with a credit card by signing in to My Account.

  • Overdue Fines: The Library does not charge overdue fines, except on the Takeout Tech collection. The overdue fine for Takeout Tech items is $2.00/day.

  • Damaged & Lost Item Fees: The Library charges patrons who damage or lose borrowed items the cost of the item listed in the library record.

  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Fees: ILLs are materials borrowed from other libraries in our network and from libraries across the country.If fees or special handling costs are charged by the lending library, these are passed along to the patron.If you lose or damage an item borrowed from another library, the replacement fee is determined by the lending library's policy.

Due Dates & Renewals

Jump to: Borrowing Policy & Fine-FreeReturning Items

All items are due back by midnight of the due date.

Item Loan Period Renewals Holdable Checkout Limits Fines/Day
Books & Audiobooks 21 Days 2 Yes None
Most Wanted items 7 Days 1 No None
Hot Items 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Audiobooks & Playaways 21 Days 2 Yes None
NEW Feature Film DVDs 7 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Feature Film DVDs 7 Days 2 Yes None
NEW DVD Series 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
DVD Series 14 Days 2 Yes None
DVD2GO movies 3 Days 0 Can be reserved up to 12 hours prior to pickup 20
NEW Nonfiction DVDs 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Nonfiction DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes None
Great Courses DVDs and CDs 21 Days 2 Yes None
NEW Video Games 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Video Games (excluding Nintendo Switch) 21 Days 1 Yes None
Nintendo Switch video games 21 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Music CDs 21 Days 2 Yes None
Magazines 14 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Takeout Tech items (Circulate only to Lake Forest residents) 14 Days 1 Yes, for Lake Forest residents 1 per type, 3 total $2.00
NEW Children's DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Children's DVDs 14 Days 2 Yes None
Launchpads and Views 21 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Exploration Kits 21 Days 0 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Children's Puzzles, Puppets, Toys 21 Days 2 Yes, for Lake Forest residents None
Golden Tote Bags 21 days 3 No None
Item Loan Period, Renewals, Holdable, Checkout Limits Fines/Day
Interlibrary Loan from within CCS Consortium Follows Lake Forest Library policy
Interlibrary Loan from outside our Library Consortium Follows Lake Forest Library policy $1.00

Autorenewals

Many items will attempt to automatically renew up to 2 times, so you can keep your borrowed materials longer.

If you have email or text notifications enabled, you will receive a message letting you know which items autorenewed and their new due dates.

You Can't Renew

  • Items that another patron has placed on hold
  • Items that have reached their renewal limit
  • New movies, New TV series, and all DVD2GO movies
  • Magazines
  • Takeout Tech items
  • Launchpads and Views
  • Exploration Kits

It may be possible to renew an item that is overdue. Please refer to the "Manual Renewals" section on this page.

Manual Renewals

To manually renew items, you can either:

To renew online through My Account:

  1. Sign in to My Account
  2. Tap the Checkouts tab
  3. Select the item(s) you would like to renew
  4. Tap the Renew button
  5. Tap the Yes button to confirm your renewal

At the Library

All items except DVD2GO movies can be returned at Lake Forest Library, 360 E Deerpath Rd, Lake Forest.

Drive-up Book Drops Main Circulation Desk Children's Circulation Desk
Location Behind the building In the Rotunda on the Main Level Downstairs
Available 24/7 When the Library is open When the Library is open
Accepts All items except DVD2GO movies and items with special return instructions (such as oversize books, Takeout Tech items, and Booksy Book Boxes) All items except DVD2GO movies All items except DVD2GO movies

At the West Train Station

All DVD2GO movies and most other Lake Forest Library items can be returned at Metra's Milwaukee District North Line train station, 911 Telegraph Rd, Lake Forest.

Return slots DVD2GO machine
Location In the station wall near the front door In the station lobby
Available 24/7 When the train station is open
Accepts All items except DVD2GO movies and items with special return instructions (such as oversize books, Takeout Tech items, and Booksy Book Boxes) Only DVD2GO movies