Borrowing Books
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Who May Check out Materials?
Checking out by Proxy
Collection Resources and Loan Periods
Law Library Gates
Renewing Library Materials
Returning Library Materials
Overdue, Damaged, or Lost Library Materials
Requesting a Checked-Out Item
Managing Your Account Online
Other Questions?

Who May Check out Materials?

Drake students, faculty, and staff (from any part of the University) may check out circulating materials using their current Drake ID card. 

Members of the Iowa bar in good standing and Drake University graduates in good standing may also obtain an individual Drake Law Library card by bringing a completed application for individual checkout privileges and a current photo ID to the Information Desk. (Applications may also be picked up at the library.) Please note: Drake graduates who are not members of the Iowa bar may only check out up to 10 items at a time from the Law Library.

Other users wishing to borrow materials from the collection may request them via interlibrary loan from their public library or the library where they are an enrolled student.

In rare cases, the library director may authorize other users, such as visiting scholars, to check out materials.

Law firms or legal departments that wish to establish institutional, as opposed to individual, borrowing privileges may complete the application for institutional checkout privileges. This form requires that the firm or department designate an individual as the responsible party who, along with the organization, will be responsible for all use of this account including lost, overdue, or damaged material borrowed from the Law Library. The linked application includes information on the accompanying documentation that must be submitted with the form. 

Checking out by Proxy

Drake faculty members may authorize one or more other people to check out library materials for them. This authorization is usually extended to students who are assisting the faculty member in his/her research. Library materials are checked out on the faculty member’s card and receive faculty loan periods. The length of the authorization is through the end of the academic year unless otherwise specified by the faculty member. The faculty member is responsible for all library materials checked out to his or her account, including those materials that his or her proxy checks out.

A faculty member wishing to authorize someone else to check out materials in his/her name should submit a Proxy Borrower’s Request Form to the Circulation Department. The form may be submitted via email from the faculty member’s Drake account, or the faculty member may turn it in at the Law Library Information Desk. If submitting the form in hard copy at the desk, the faculty member should bring his or her Drake ID for identity verification. Forms will be processed during regular Drake office hours; for forms submitted electronically, a confirmation email will be sent when the proxy is established. 

To check out library materials for a faculty member, the authorized proxy must tell the person working at the Information Desk that he/she is checking out materials as a proxy for the faculty member. The materials will be checked out in the faculty member’s name.

Collection Resources and Loan Periods

The Law Library offers books, CDs, DVDs, and a variety of other materials for loan. The loan periods for different circulating collection resources are detailed below.  Please note: much of the law library's collection is non-circulating and may only be used in the library. This includes codes, citators, reporters, digests, form books, loose-leaf services, dictionaries, directories, encyclopedias, indexes, microforms, and general reference materials.

Drake faculty members, including adjunct faculty, and staff members may check out most print items for the academic year. Drake Law Review and Drake Journal of Agricultural Law may check out circulating items for the academic year by following the library's special circulation procedures for student journals. If another patron needs an item checked out on extended loan, the library may contact the current borrower and ask him or her to return the item as soon as possible.

Two Hours, In-Library Use Only:
Reserve materials, including course reserve copies, current (unbound) journals and other periodicals, most recent study aids, high-use treatises, and reference works.

Five Hours:
Study room keys (only to Drake law students). May be renewed as long as rooms are still available for other students.

Library Closing Time, In-Library Use Only:
Headphones and, for law students only, laptop locks and foot rests.

Library Closing Time:
Phone and laptop chargers may be checked out for the day by law students. These items may be taken out of the library but should be returned the same day before the library closes.

In rare circumstances, some reserve materials may be checked out overnight, to be returned no later than one hour after the library opens the next morning. To request an overnight loan, please speak with a full-time library staff member at the Information Desk during regular business hours.

One Day:
Faculty requests for one-day loans for class (only to Drake law faculty, staff, or students)

Two Days:
Bound periodicals (only to Drake law faculty, staff, or students)

One Week:
Circulating audio CDs and tapes
Faculty requests for short-term loans for class (only to Drake law faculty, staff, or students)
Feature film DVDs and videos 
Circulating flash cards (these are typically the older sets and are all labeled as circulating)
Records and Briefs of the Supreme Court of Iowa
Study aids shelved in the stacks (not on reserve)

Four Weeks:
Treatises, whether single or multi-volume
CD-ROMs and other computer discs
Federal and state documents (when circulating, as indicated by a charge pocket)

Please note:  No library materials may be taken from the building or stored in reserved study carrels unless they have been properly checked out.

Law Library Gates

Law Library materials have security sensors. If the alarm sounds when you are leaving the library, please return to the desk so circulation staff may ensure any law library materials you have are properly checked out.

Renewing Checked-Out Library Materials

With the exception of overnight loans and study room keys, a checked-out item may be renewed up to 5 times as long as no one else has requested it. You may request renewals online using the My Account feature. You may also request a renewal at the Information Desk in person, via email, or on the phone: (515) 271-3189. Staff will indicate if any items could not be renewed and provide the new due dates for successfully renewed items.

Returning Library Materials

Please hand checked-out reserve items to Information Desk staff. Other checked-out materials should be placed in the book return at the Information Desk. Materials checked out from Cowles Library need to be returned directly to Cowles Library. The borrower is responsible for the proper return of library materials.

Overdue, Damaged, or Lost Library Materials

Patrons are responsible for returning or renewing materials by the due date. As a courtesy reminder, an overdue notice is sent to a borrower when one or more library items are not returned by the due date. If one or more items remain overdue, a second overdue notice will be sent, and we will suspend the patron's checkout privileges. All library materials must be returned to reinstate these privileges.

If one or more items still remain overdue, additional notices will be generated, and unless all materials are returned or replacement costs and fees paid, a variety of recourses may be pursued, including: placing a hold on a student's record, referring the matter to the Honor Board as a violation of the Code of Student Conduct (B. 11), referring the matter to law enforcement as a violation of section 714.5 of the Code of Iowa, or, in the case of an attorney, referring the matter to the Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board.

Patrons who lose or damage library materials should promptly contact full-time staff in the Circulation Department in person or via email or telephone (515-271-3189). Charges for lost items include the replacement price for the item and a $25 processing fee. If the lost item was a paperback that had been bound, a binding charge of $10 also may apply. The fee assessed for damaged items depends on the extent of the damage. It may be as high as the replacement cost, plus the $25 processing fee and any binding charges.

If a patron finds a lost item within 30 days after paying for it, the library will refund the payment, less the processing fee, if a replacement copy has not yet been ordered or the order can be cancelled.

Requesting a Checked-Out Item

Library users eligible for borrowing privileges may request an item checked out to another patron. Library staff will place a hold on the item so that it cannot be renewed; when the item is returned, it will be checked out to the first person on the waiting list. If the due date of the requested item is more than four weeks away, library staff will ask the patron with the item to return it as soon as possible.

You may request that a hold be placed on an item that is currently checked out by clicking on the Request a Hold/Recall button you see in the catalog listing for that item. You may also request a hold at the Information Desk in person, via email, or on the phone: (515) 271-3189. Use your My Account login credentials to access this feature. (For Drake patrons, this is your Drake ID and password.)

Note: Placing a hold will log you into your account. If you are using a public computer, be sure to close the catalog or press the logout button before leaving the computer. 

When the item is available, you will be notified by email that you can pick it up at the Law Library Information Desk.

Managing Your Account Online: My Account

You can use your online account to view materials checked out to you, renew materials, or cancel hold requests.

Login credentials

Drake faculty, staff, and students can login with their Drake ID and password (the same one used for BlueView and Drake email). Other patrons use their library card number and PIN number. To get your PIN number stop by the Drake Law Library Information Desk with your photo ID or email your request to from the email account listed for you in your Drake Law Library user record. Please note: Our privacy policy does not allow us to give the PIN information over the phone.

Using My Account

Once you have your login information, go to the catalog and select the My Account link at the top of the page. You then have several options. After following the first link, you will get a log in screen. Use your login credentials to access these features: 

Review My Account: This screen provides a list of options you can follow depending on the status of your account.

If you have materials checked out, you will see the link "Checkouts," which will display all the items currently checked out to you and their due dates. If items are eligible for renewal, you may renew them by selecting the checkout box next to each item you wish to renew and then clicking on Renew Selected Items.

If you have placed a hold on a checked-out item, you will see the link "Holds," which will display a list of items you currently have on hold and information about their availability. You have the option to cancel one or more holds if you no longer want the item.

Renew My Materials: This works the same as Review My Account but also gives you the option to check a single button to request renewal of all materials you have checked out.

Renewal Success and New Due Dates: Once you have submitted a renewal request through either option above, a new due date and updated renewal count will display. A renewal failure message will display for any items that cannot be renewed.

Change My PIN: Users with PINs may choose any combination of letters and numbers for your PIN. We strongly recommend that you do not use a secure PIN, such as your banking number, because library staff will be able to see your PIN on certain screens. Note: If you are a Drake faculty or staff member or student and you choose this option, you will change your library login information, but NOT your Drake password.

Logging Out

Once you have logged into your account, you will stay logged in until you close the catalog or logout. If you are using a public computer, be sure to close the catalog or press the logout button before leaving the computer.

Other Questions?

If you have additional questions about the Law Library's circulation policies, please
call the Information Desk at (515) 271-3189 or email, or contact Circulation/Reference Librarian Karen Wallace at (515) 271-2989 or via email at

Note: For information about interlibrary loans, please contact David Hanson at (515) 271-2077 or email

See the Cowles Circulation Services page for information about circulation at Cowles Library.

Last Modified: 2/23/2016 9:26:00 AM by Karen Wallace