Library Card Registration & Eligibility Policy

(En Español: Solicitud de tarjetas de la biblioteca y política de elegibilidad)


  1. Eligibility. Free library cards are offered to:
    1. All full- and part-year residents of Maryland including military service members on active duty in Maryland and their families
    2. Anyone employed or working in Maryland
    3. Students of any Maryland university, college, school, or learning institution
  2. Application. To obtain a library card, a person submits a library card application, either on-line or in person, and establishes identity.
    1. To establish identity, a person may present any one of the following unexpired credentials with a permanently affixed photograph of the person:
      1. U.S. or foreign state driver's license or identification including state mobile license and identification
      2. Government-issued ID: Military, Passport, Permanent Resident Card, Department of Corrections, or Certificate of Citizenship/Naturalization
      3. Student Identification Card
      4. Employee Identification Card
    2. If the customer is unable to provide identification from the list above, they can provide two pieces of proof from the following list.  Both forms of identification must have the person's name.
      1. Birth Certificate
      2. Voter registration
      3. Vehicle registration card or title
      4. Social Security Card  
      5. Current lease or rental agreement, utility, telephone, credit card, or bank statement (electronic versions are acceptable)
    3. To establish a work address, they must present any one of the following items
      1. Paystub issued within the past 30 days showing their name and the address of a Maryland work location.
      2. Business card with their name and address of a Maryland work location
    4. Branch Managers, Circulation Supervisors, and people in charge, or their designee may accept alternate forms of identity verification from persons who are unable to present valid credentials due to hardship or other circumstances.
  3. Types of Library Cards. Library cards are issued with varying borrowing privileges, conditions, and expiration dates.
    1. Patron Cards
      1. May borrow any circulating item and access all electronic resources
      2. The cardholder is responsible for all fees. If the cardholder is a minor, the cardholder's parent or adult guardian is responsible for all fees.
      3. Expire after 24 months of inactivity
    2. Limited DVD Cards
      1. May borrow access all electronic resources any circulating item except for DVDs rated "R" by the Motion Picture Association of American and "TV-MA" by the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board.
      2. Issued to persons who are less than 17 years of age upon request of the parent or guardian
      3. Limited DVD Cards are converted automatically to Patron Cards when the person reaches 17 years of age
      4. Expire after 24 months of inactivity
    3. Virtual Cards
      1. May borrow and access electronic resources only
    4. Educator Cards
      1. May borrow circulating items for extended periods and access electronic resources to support curriculum needs
      2. Issued to educators teaching in Anne Arundel County, including homeschooling parents and caregivers
      3. Card holder is responsible for all lost or damaged items
      4. Additional credential requirements, conditions, and expiration date are set in the Educator's Library Card Policy
    5. Student Access to Improved Learning Cards (SAIL Cards)
      1. Provided to Anne Arundel County Public School students and other AA County educational institutions that have entered a partnership with the Library to support student success through access to library resources. This partnership must be formalized by a letter of agreement between the educational institution's chief administrator and the Library Chief Executive Officer.
      2. May access all electronic resources and borrow up to ten circulating items, except Interlibrary Loan items.
      3. Borrowing privileges may be suspended if borrowed items become lost or damaged.
      4. Expire annually unless renewed per the terms of the controlling letter of agreement.

Policy approved by the Anne Arundel County Public Library Board of Trustees, December 15, 2022.

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