Lending Rules

Hennepin County Library Administrative Policy


The purpose of this policy is to establish specific lending rules that ensure fair and consistent application of the Hennepin County Library Board Lending Policy.

Loan periods

  • Most library material may be borrowed for 3 weeks (21 days).
  • The loan period for DVDs is 1 week (7 days).
  • Book Club Kits may be checked out for 6 weeks (42 days).
  • Loan periods are longer for At Home and Deposit Collection services.
  • Reference material cannot be checked out.

Renewing library material

  • Library materials may be renewed automatically, by telephone, online or in-person.
  • Library material, unless it is requested by another patron, may be renewed to extend the loan period up to 3 times.
  • Interlibrary loans and Book Club Kits cannot be renewed.

Limits on the number of items checked out at any given time

  • Most patrons may have up to 50 items (except downloads) checked out at any given time. All physical formats (books, DVDs, CDs, etc.) and interlibrary loans contribute to this total.
  • Patrons may have the following downloads checked out at any given time:
    • cloudLibrary – 15 eBooks
    • OverDrive – 15 eBooks and audiobooks
    • RBdigital – 15 audiobooks
    • Freegal – 5 songs per week
  • Patrons with blocks on their library card (e.g. fines and fees, address verification needed) may be limited in the number of items that can be checked out.

Requesting library material

  • Patrons may have up to 50 physical items on request at a time (including holds waiting to be picked up).
  • Patrons may have up to 15 active interlibrary loan requests on MNLINK.
  • Patrons may have the following downloads on request at a time:
    • cloudLibrary – 15 eBooks
    • OverDrive – 15 eBooks and audiobooks
    • RBdigital – 10 audiobooks
  • Patrons choose to be notified by email or phone that their request is available or their materials are overdue.
  • Requests are held for 8 days. If the pickup location is closed on the 8th day, the hold expiration date is advanced to the next open date.
  • Board books, comics, browsers, and any other general title record items cannot be requested.

Overdue notices, fines and fees

  • Patrons will receive up to 4 notices via phone or email. Upon final notice, items not returned will be declared lost.
  • Patrons will receive courtesy emails with account information if they have a registered email address.
  • Fines and Fees are detailed in the Fee and Fine Schedule.


This administrative policy is reviewed at least every three (3) years by the Library Services Division Manager (or designee) in consultation with Collection Management Services staff and 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: 01/2021
Last reviewed/revised: 01/2018
Adopted: 06/22/2009