Fines, Fees & Borrowing

Borrowing Privileges

  • Most materials check out for three weeks: books, audiobooks and DVD sets of 200 minutes or more.
  • Magazines and DVDs under 200 minutes check out for one week.
  • Patrons are limited to three Your Lucky Day (recent popular releases) DVDs per library account.
  • Adult Book Club Express kits check out for six weeks. Patrons are limited to one kit at a time.
  • Juvenile Book Club Express kits check out for six weeks. Patrons are limited to two kits at a time.

Parental Controls: Children’s Library Card

  • For children under the age of 15, Douglas County Libraries offers parents or guardians the option of limiting their children’s borrowing to our children’s collection alone. This option is called The Children’s Library Card. This card option does not limit children’s use of or access to library computers, WiFi, or event registration. Accounts will automatically revert to full access when each child turns 15.
  • Parents or legal guardians may change an account to or from the Children’s Library Card at any time. This must be done in person and requires the child’s library card number.
  • Please note that should a child need to borrow items from our teen or adult collections, the parent or guardian must use an unrestricted account to borrow those items.

Borrowing Limits

  • Each patron may have up to 200 physical items checked out at any one time.
  • Patrons may download five songs per week from Freegal. Weeks reset on Sundays at 10PM.
  • The checkout period for OverDrive e-books/audiobooks is set by the patron at the time of checkout, for seven, 14 or 21 days.
  • Twenty OverDrive e-books/audiobooks may be checked out at any one time.
  • Patrons may stream eight items per month from Hoopla. Streaming and downloading are also subject to daily budget limits based on the library's Hoopla subscription. Budget limits reset at midnight daily.
  • The checkout period for Hoopla audiobooks, e-books and comics is 21 days. Hoopla movies and television check out for three days, and music checks out for seven days.
  • Patrons may stream four videos per month from Kanopy. Streaming from Kanopy Kids and Kanopy's Great Courses collection is unlimited.
  • Patrons may download unlimited issues of magazines from Flipster.


Patrons are allowed 200 requests at any one time. OverDrive allows patrons 20 holds at a time.


Library items may be renewed up to eight times. Automatic first-time renewal will take place the same day an item is due, and patrons will receive an email notification of the automatic renewal with the updated due date. Items with a holds list will not be automatically renewed. Your Lucky Day materials, magazines, Book Club Express kits, e-books and Interlibrary Loan items may not be renewed.

Circulation Policy for Our Louviers Branch

Items from our Louviers location do not fill holds for patrons at other locations. Our smallest library has very limited collections intended primarily for browsing. Patrons may place an item from this library on hold only for pickup at that same location.

Your Lucky Day (YLD) Items

YLD items are copies of very popular titles that do not fill holds, but are placed in the libraries for patrons to browse. These items are labeled with a green shamrock; are available first come, first served; and are not renewable. DCL staff will not hold these items and are unable to verify an item is on the shelf.

YLD Movies

DCL offers many YLD copies of DVDs and Blu-rays of popular films for the first two months after release. Patrons may place holds on titles as soon as they are in the catalog, but typically requests are not filled during this time as all copies are in the YLD collection. These requests will be fulfilled after the two-month period.

Overdue and Fines

Patrons will be assessed a 20 cent daily fine for each overdue item with the following exceptions:
  • The library offers a grace period for most material. Items returned or renewed within three days of the due date will not be subject to a fine. Any item going past the grace period date will be assessed a fine from the due date.
  • There is a $1 daily fine for reference materials and nontraditional items/equipment.
  • Overdue Interlibrary Loan items cost $1 per day with no grace period.
  • Book Club Express kits:
    • Fine is $1 per day with no grace period.
    • Missing or damaged books or guides cost $10 each. If you return a missing item within one year of the original pickup date, $5 will be waived or refunded.
    • Lost or damaged kits incur a $140 charge.
If a patron accumulates a total of $20 or more in fines and fees, the patron may not check out any library materials until the fine is paid down. If the total exceeds $50, the account may be referred to a collection agency.

Maximum Fines

The following are the maximum fines for material types in the library:
  • Book Club Express - $5
  • Interlibrary Loan Item - $10
  • Reference Materials - $5

Patron Overdue Notification and Debt Collection Timeline

Number of days past due date:


12 DCL sends first overdue notice to patron via email or phone.
24 DCL sends second overdue notice to patron via email or phone.
36 Final notice sent by email or U.S. mail, saying patron will be charged for item(s) not returned.
  • On day 48, DCL puts replacement charge(s) on patron’s account.

If account goes over $50*:

  • “Billing Notice” is placed on patron account.
  • Patron will receive an email or letter indicating that the balance must be paid or the account will be sent to Unique Management Services Inc. for collection. Patron has 21 days to respond once communication is sent out.
  • “Billing Notice” is posted on the account each time an email or letter is sent.
  • DCL sends account to Unique Management and adds a $10 collection agency fee to patron account.
  • “Message to Borrower” note is placed on patron account, noting “Zero balance required to stop collection activity.”
  • Unique Management sends patron a letter as soon as it receives patron account, usually the same day. Patron has three weeks to respond.
Three weeks later
  • If no response, Unique Management sends patron a second letter. 
  • If patron returns only some materials or makes a partial payment, Unique Management sends another letter encouraging patron to resolve the remaining balance.
Three weeks later and forward If patron still owes the library money, Unique Management begins calling the patron. It will continue sending mail and making calls until the amount due is paid.
* If patron reports an item as lost and the replacement value of the item is over $50, or if total account fees/fines go over $50, the collection process starts.

Items Returned to Other Library Systems

The patron is responsible for the item until it reaches a DCL library.

Library Material Replacement

The replacement fee for library materials shall be the full retail value of the materials, as recorded in the library database. DCL does not accept replacement copies or donations in lieu of payment.