Skip to main content
THIS SITE

Library Policies

Using the Law Library


 

Rules for Patrons

The Law Library’s purpose is to assist the Law School in fulfilling its mission of academic excellence, scholarship and service. In addition to supporting the curricular and research needs of our academic community, the Law Library’s collections and services are also available to the general public, including the local legal and business community, and to the undergraduate and graduate students of Rutgers and other institutions of higher education in our area.

The Law Library is committed to protecting the rights of individual users and sustaining the integrity of its collections. The Law Library abides by the Law School Code of Conduct, the Rutgers University Code of Conduct, all other University policies, and applicable state and federal laws.

Users who do not adhere to the following behavior guidelines may be asked to leave and may be subjected to loss of library privileges, appropriate administrative action within the university, and prosecution under state law. Flagrant or repeat violators may be banned from all University locations. Instances of non-compliance will be documented and kept on file.

  1. Use of the Collections. The Rutgers Law Library’s collections are available to all members of the Rutgers community and to the public. Members of the public are welcome to use our resources on-site. All library patrons should be engaged in activities associated with the use of an academic library. These uses include reading, studying, or using library services or resources. Users not engaged in these activities will be required to leave the law library.
  2. Registration Required. All non-Rutgers patrons are required to register with the security desk located at the entrance to the Law School, and again at the Law Library Circulation desk. Patrons who only wish to use the Government Documents collection may do so without registering at the Circulation desk.
  3. Display of Identification. All Rutgers faculty, staff, and students are required to display or produce a Rutgers ID card while in the Law Library. At the Newark branch, all non-Rutgers patrons are required to wear the identification tag issued to them by the registration desk in the lobby of the Center for Law and Justice. At the Camden branch, all non-Rutgers patrons must sign in at the entrance to the law school building and at the law library’s Circulation desk.
  4. Library Entrance and Exit. Patrons may enter and exit the Law Library only through the main doors by the Circulation desk. Using any other doors or means to enter or exit the Law Library is prohibited by the fire code as well as building policy.
  5. Appropriate Use of Facilities and Equipment. The Law Library’s facilities and equipment are to be used for the purposes for which they are provided.
  6. Destruction or Mutilation of Law Library Property. No person may willfully, maliciously, or wantonly mutilate, deface, tear, write upon, mar, or injure any Law Library materials, electronic resources, furnishings, equipment, or facilities.
  7. Government Documents. At the Newark branch, Federal and state documents which are located in the Government Documents area on the 2nd floor may only be checked out or checked in by the Government Documents librarian or staff. Where duplicate copies of materials are available, the Government Documents librarian, in his/her sole discretion, may permit a patron to borrow such materials for up to one month. When the Government Documents area is closed, materials may be returned to the Circulation desk. At both the Newark and Camden branches, Government Documents may be accessed at the public computer terminals, located on the main level of the Law Library.
  8. Re-shelving Materials. We ask patrons not to re-shelve books or other materials that they have removed from the shelves. Please allow Law Library staff to re-shelve all materials. Materials may be placed on any designated re-shelving cart or shelf to clear work space for other patrons.
  9. Returning Materials. Law library materials that have been checked out must be returned to the Circulation desk for check-in. Materials borrowed from a patron’s non-local branch may be returned to the patron’s local branch.
    Materials borrowed from the Rutgers University Libraries should be returned to the Dana Library (in Newark), the Robeson Library (in Camden) or any other Rutgers University Library. Rutgers University Libraries’ materials should not be returned to the Law Library.
    Materials borrowed via inter-library loan must be returned to the Circulation desk at the branch of the Law Library from which they were borrowed.
  10. Materials Left on Tables or Carrels. Materials left on Law Library tables or carrels will be re-shelved. Notes left with materials requesting that the materials not be re-shelved will not be honored unless written approval is obtained from the Circulation Librarian or the Associate Director for Public Services. Patrons who receive approval to leave materials un-shelved must bring the material to the Circulation desk to be held overnight.
  11. Suspension of Borrowing Privileges. The Law Library reserves, in its sole discretion, the right to revoke, suspend, or modify the borrowing privileges granted to any individual.
  12. Media Services. The Law Library has a collection of video and audio materials available for viewing/listening to in the Law Library. Patrons may request these materials and borrow headphones at the Circulation desk. Designated copies of certain audio or visual materials may circulate overnight; please see the Circulation librarian for information about particular titles.
  13. Scanning Stations. The Law Library has several scanning stations available to patrons. Patrons may save digital copies to a USB drive, Google, or Dropbox at no cost. The scanning stations may also be used to make print copies; printed copies cost $0.10 per page.
  14. Food and Drinks. Patrons may consume food and drinks in the Law Library, except at computer workstations, the Criminal Justice Library on the Third Floor in Newark or other designated areas. Patrons must avoid consuming items that create messes, smells, and noise. Patrons whose food disrupts others will be asked to consume it outside of the Law Library. All users are expected to act responsibly and courteously by disposing of trash and recyclables and cleaning up spills or crumbs. Major spills or messes should be reported to Law Library staff as soon as possible. The Law Library strongly recommends beverages be enjoyed from lidded, spill-proof containers.
  15. Patron Conduct. The following actions and behaviors are not permitted in the Law Library:
    1. Noise and other disruptive behavior that interferes with the use of the Law Library by another person. The Law Library is a quiet place for study and research. At the Newark branch, conversation is only permitted on the first floor, between the New Jersey Reference Room and the Foosaner Gallery. At both the Newark and Camden branches, group study should take place in the designated study rooms. All patrons are required to be courteous of others and refrain from harassing or annoying others through noisy or boisterous activities, by staring at another person, by following another person around the Law Library, by playing audio equipment so that others can hear it, by talking or singing loudly, or by behaving in any other manner that can be expected to disturb other patrons.
    2. Bodily hygiene that interferes with the use of the Law Library by other patrons or staff.
    3. Patrons who are not properly attired, such as patrons without shoes or shirts.
    4. Any conduct that interferes with another person’s use of the Law Library or with Law Library staff in the performance of their duties.
    5. Misusing a restroom, such as using the restroom as a laundry or bathing facility.
    6. Solicitation of money, contributions, or signatures, or conducting surveys of any type.
    7. Bringing animals into the Law Library, other than service or assistance animals.
    8. Smoking, use of smokeless tobacco, or electronic cigarettes (“vaping”).
    9. Speaking on a cell phone anywhere in the Law Library, including study rooms and stairwells. Texting is encouraged!
  16. Children. Anyone under the age of 18, with no Rutgers University affiliation, must be accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times. Parents or guardians who bring children to the Law Library are responsible for their protection and safety and must never leave children unattended. Children are expected to abide by all Law Library conduct and safety rules. Library staff may request identification to verify the age and university affiliation of any unaccompanied young person.
  17. Use of Study Rooms, Newark Campus. Only Rutgers Law School students and Rutgers School of Criminal Justice students may reserve and use study rooms in the Law Library. Use of the study rooms is done by reservation on a first-come, first-serve basis, using the form in the reservation book located at the Circulation desk. Reservations for up to four hours of use may be made on the day of use only; no reservations may be made in advance of the current date. Use of study rooms is limited to study groups; to individual students using audio or video equipment; LAWRS teaching assistants; and authorized tutors.
    A study group (consisting of two or more qualified students) may make same-day reservations for up to four hours. The name of each member of the group must be on the reservation form. Multiple individuals in the same group may not reserve a study room on the same day; however, the study group using the room does not need to vacate the room until the next group with a reservation arrives. Study groups have priority and an individual student may be asked to vacate a study room to accommodate a study group.
    LAWR(S) teaching assistants, and other authorized tutors, may reserve study rooms for up to four hours per day for an entire semester. If a room is reserved by a LAWR(S) teaching assistant, tutor, or study group, any other student using the room must vacate the room upon request.
    All Law Library rules apply to the use of study rooms. In addition:
    • Obscuring the windows in the study rooms is not permitted.
    • Users must not make noise loud enough to disturb others.
    • Users must keep rooms neat and clean.
    • Failure to pick up paper and other debris will result in the revocation of study room privileges for the group or the individual responsible.

    Attorneys, non-Rutgers Law students, and the general public are not permitted to use study rooms at any time.

  18. Use of Study Rooms, Camden Campus. Study Rooms in the Law School building may be reserved only by Rutgers Law students. There are two study rooms located within the library: Room 401 and Room 501. Students may reserve either room via the Law School’s intranet. Students will be prompted to login with their NetID and password. Scroll down to “Campus Specific Resources,” confirm you are looking at “Camden,” then choose look for “Room Reservations.” Students will there be prompted to use the BookView Study Room system.
    The reservations system is managed by RCIT, not the library. Students should direct questions about the reservations system to RCIT. Students should leave study rooms unlocked as they exit. All Law Library rules apply to the use of study rooms.
  19. Staff Areas. To assure the safety and productivity of librarians and library staff, unauthorized individuals are not permitted in staff areas unless invited to enter by staff as necessary for the conduct of Law Library business.
  20. Use of Law Library Computers. The Law Library’s computing resources are intended to support legal research and Law School instruction and such uses are given priority. Access is subject to availability. Users may be asked to limit or cease their use of Law Library computers in order to accommodate others.
    1. Access to all Law Library computing resources (individual computers and the computer lab) terminates fifteen minutes prior to the closing of the Law Library.
    2. Computer terminals in the Law Library are for use by Rutgers University ID-holders and non-Rutgers patrons who have registered with the Circulation desk. All patrons must adhere to all Rutgers University policies relating to the use of its computers and network.
    3. Alteration of the equipment, including terminals, keyboards, screens, printers, cables, or connections by a patron is not permitted; this includes attempts to alter the hard drive. Only the circulation staff may add paper to or clear jams from Law Library printers, or remove, switch, or replace ink cartridges. In Camden, any problems with student printers should be reported to Circulation staff, who will contact the Camden Office of Information Technology (which supplies the printers).
  21. Reference Services. Reference librarians cannot provide patrons with legal advice, help patrons make decisions regarding legal rights and liabilities, assist patrons with preparing legal papers, or perform in-depth research for patrons. Reference librarians cannot interpret statutes, cases, or other legal materials for patrons.
  22. Policy Changes. The Law Library, in its sole discretion, reserves the right to suspend, revise, or repeal the policies, procedures, and rules governing the Law Library and its facilities at any time without prior notice. Any changes to Law Library policy will be promptly posted to the Law Library’s website.

Privacy. The Law Library respects the rights of patrons to pursue their research and recognizes that the subject of their research is private. Protecting patron privacy and confidentiality is an integral part of the mission of the Law Library. In order to ensure this right, the Law Library has adopted the American Library Association Code of Ethics and the New Jersey Confidentiality of Library Records Law, N.J.S.A. 18A: 73-43.1-43.3, as the basis for its privacy policy.

Access to Collections & Borrowing Privileges

See below for borrowing privileges by patron group

General Rules

  • Circulating and Non-Circulating Materials. Materials in the Law Library may be circulating or non-circulating. Circulating materials may be checked out by patrons with borrowing privileges, as described below. Non-circulating materials may be used only within the Law Library. Non-circulating materials generally include (but are not limited to) multi-volume treatises, loose-leaf materials, books with pocket-part or pamphlet supplements, statutes, case reporters, digests, periodicals, and annuals.
  • Reserve Materials. Materials that have been designated as ‘Reserve’ materials may be checked out for use only inside the Law Library. Reserve materials are labeled “Reserve.” The Law Library reserves the right to change the designation of materials. When borrowing Reserve materials, all patrons must leave their Rutgers or other photo identification at the Circulation Desk. This identification will be returned when the checked-out Reserve materials are returned to the Circulation Desk.
  • Media Services. The Law Library has a collection of CD-ROMs, DVDs and other audio/visual materials, which may be borrowed for viewing or listening to in the Law Library. Arrangements to use or play such materials, such as borrowing headphones or equipment set-up, may be made at the Circulation Desk.
  • Overdue and Lost Materials. Patrons are responsible for keeping track of all materials borrowed and when those materials are due to be returned to the Law Library. Rutgers Law students and other Rutgers University-affiliated patrons may check the status of their accounts online via the Law Library’s catalog [https://catalog.law.rutgers.edu/]. If a patron loses any borrowed Law Library materials, the patron will be invoiced and charged for the replacement cost of the materials plus a fifteen dollar ($15.00) restocking fee.
  • Recall of Borrowed Materials. All circulating materials that have been borrowed are subject to recall at the Law Library’s discretion. Patrons will receive notice of any recall by email. Recalled books are due within five (5) business days from the date of the recall notice. Failure to return a recalled item by the date state in the recall notice will result in a per-item fine of $5.00 per day.
  • Government Documents. Federal and state documents are located in the designated Government Documents area (In Newark, on the 2nd Floor; in Camden, on the 4th Floor). In Camden, Government Documents are generally non-circulating. In Newark, duplicate copies of Government Documents may be checked out by the Government Documents librarian, in his/her sole discretion, for up to one month. When the Government Documents area is closed, materials may be returned to the 1st floor Circulation Desk.
  • Special Collections and Archives. Items in the Special Collections and Archives in Newark may be used only by advanced appointment with the Curator. Only notepads, pencils, and electronic devices will be allowed into the Special Collections Reading Room. Users may not bring in pens, bags, food, or drink. (Those items may be left in the Curator’s office, as needed.) Photocopying or scanning of materials may be allowed at the discretion of the Curator, taking into account the condition of each item and the online availability of the same material. Usage of Special Collections items in exhibits, or any other usage outside of the Special Collections area, must be approved in writing by the Curator or the Senior Associate Dean for Information Services.
  • Updating Patron Information. To ensure the accuracy of Law Library records, all patrons with borrowing privileges are responsible for reporting changes of name, address, telephone, or email address to the Law Library.
  • No Transfer of Borrowing Privileges. Borrowing privileges are non-transferable. Borrowing privileges may be revoked or suspended for violations of Law Library policies.
  • Suspension of Borrowing Privileges. The Law Library reserves, in its sole discretion, the right to revoke, suspend, or modify the borrowing privileges granted to any individual.

Rutgers Law Students

  • Borrowing Privileges. Law students may check out:
    • Reserves: up to 5 items at a time, for in-library use. Borrowing time varies by item (from 2 hours to all-day use).
    • CD/DVD/Multimedia: up to 5 items at a time, for in-library use (unless otherwise approved), for one day.
    • All other circulating materials: up to 5 items at a time, for 30 days. Each item may be renewed one time for an additional 30 days.
  • Communications with Law Students. All communications from the Law Library to students will be conducted by email, using the student’s official Rutgers University email address, and/or the email address that is listed in the Law School student directory. It is the responsibility of the student to regularly check their email account, and to confirm that the email address listed in the student directory is accurate.
  • Student Borrowing on Behalf of Faculty. A Law Student, employed by a Law faculty member as a research or teaching assistant, may borrow circulating or non-circulating material from the Law Library on the Law faculty-member’s behalf, subject to the following rules. Students must present a letter from the faculty member stating that the student is so employed and authorized to borrow for the faculty member. This letter must be dated and shall be valid only during the semester in which it is written. The faculty member’s name will be added to the student’s Law Library patron record. Students seeking borrowing privileges on behalf of faculty from the Rutgers University Libraries should contact the Robeson Library (Camden) or the Dana Library (Newark) to request the appropriate forms.

Attorneys

  • Borrowing Privileges. New Jersey attorneys may apply for borrowing privileges. Applicants must present identification and proof of New Jersey bar admission. A $25.00 fee is required to open an Attorney borrowing account. Payment may be tendered by cash or check only. Attorney borrowers may borrow:
    • Reserves: up to 5 items at a time, for in-library use. Borrowing time varies by item (from 2 hours to all-day use).
    • All other circulating materials: up to 5 items at a time, for 30 days. Items may not be renewed.
  • Revocation of Borrowing Privileges. Failure to return books on time may result in suspension or termination of attorney borrowing privileges. Borrowers will be billed for the replacement cost of any lost materials, plus related re-stocking fees.

Rutgers Students and Faculty (outside of the law school)

  • Borrowing Privileges. Rutgers University students and faculty (who are not affiliated with the Law School) may borrow:
    • Reserves: up to 5 items at a time, for in-library use. Borrowing time varies by item (from 2 hours to all-day use).
    • All other circulating materials: up to 5 books at a time for 30 days. Books may be renewed 1 time, for an additional 30 days.

Members of the Public

  • Borrowing Privileges. The public is welcome to visit and make use of the Rutgers Law Library collection. Members of the public may borrow:
    • Reserves: up to 5 items at a time, for in-library use. Borrowing time varies by item (from 2 hours to all-day use).
  • The Law Library cannot provide research services or other kinds of borrowing privileges to the public.