Bartlett Public Library District is going Fine Free!

As of July 1, 2024, no overdue fines will be charged for materials that are checked out at the Bartlett Public Library District, with exceptions for special collections


Becoming fine free removes barriers to accessing the Library and helps provide an equitable experience for everyone in our community. For some patrons, the inability to pay a fine can cut off access to the Library when they need services the most.


Fines currently account for less than 1% of the Library’s annual revenue. Studies have shown that fines are not an effective incentive to return materials on time. Our staff can improve our customer service by focusing on positive interactions with the community.


We believe that becoming fine free improves our services to the community and supports the mission of our institution. By becoming fine free we aim to encourage library use, reduce penalties for overdue items and allow Bartlett to enjoy our library and its materials to the fullest extent.



Frequently Asked Questions

How will overdue items be treated without fines?

If there is no hold on the item, your item will automatically renew up to two times. After the item has reached its renewal limit, a block will be placed on your account once the item is 10 days late, until it is returned. If an item is not returned after 21 days, it will be considered lost and you will be charged the replacement cost of the item. If the item is returned, the replacement cost will be waived.


Do items still have due dates?

Yes, you are still responsible for honoring your item’s due date. Returning your items on time ensures that others in the community can enjoy our resources, as well!


What if I previously had fines?

All overdue fines will be removed from accounts. Lost/Damaged fees still apply. If you have questions about a charge on your account, please speak with a member of our staff.


Will I have to wait longer for materials?

Libraries that have gone fine free have not seen a difference in wait time for items.


What is the difference between overdue fines and lost/damaged fees?

Late fines are daily penalties assessed for late return of items. Lost/Damaged Fees are charges to replace unreturned, lost, or damaged items.


Which special collections will still have fines?

The Library of Things and Video Game collections will still be eligible for overdue fines due to the nature and expenses of the materials.