Library Cards

Getting Your Library Card

What can I do with a library card?

Patrons can check out a wide variety of materials with their library cards, not just books! Patrons also have access to resources like:

  • Music CDs
  • Videos
  • Audiobooks
  • Internet computers
  • eBooks and eMagazines you can check out from home
  • and more!

Please see the Welcome Brochure to find out more about our services.

Who can get a library card?

Anyone who lives in our library district can get a free library card. Our library district includes all townships in Porter County except for Westchester Township.

If you don't live in our district, you may still be able to get a free library card:

  • If your home library is a partner with us. Most Indiana libraries are partners.
  • If you are a Teacher who teaches in our district.
  • If you are a student living here for school.
  • If you are a businesses in our district.
  • If you are are living temporarily at a shelter in our district.
  • If you only want to use our computers (not check out materials).

If you can't get a free library card, you might be able to get a different kind of library card:

  • If you are living in our district temporarily, you can get a card if you make a $50.00 cash deposit. This deposit will be refunded if the card is in good standing when you turn it in.
  • If you already have a card at another Indiana library, you can purchase a state-wide Public Library Access Card (PLAC) for an annual fee. This is good at any Indiana library.
  • Anyone can purchase a card for an annual fee. This costs less than a PLAC, but can only be used at our libraries.

How old do I have to be to get a library card?

Anyone can get a library card, even babies. However, children in 5th grade and under must have a parent come with to register for a library card. If you finished 5th grade, but are under 18, you may register yourself, or have a parent come with and do it for you.

How do I get a library card?

To get a library card, bring a valid photo ID and a proof of address to the library. Your proof of address can be something like:

  • Current bill addressed to you and dated within 30 days.
  • Piece of mail that has a postmark no older than 30 days.
  • Lease agreement dated within the last 30 days.

You can use your card right away to check out up to three items, use the computers, and check out ebooks. However, you won't be able to check anything else out until we get your address confirmation. Within a few days, you will get a postcard in the mail. Bring this back in to us to confirm your address and get full borrowing privileges.

Parents, if you are registering your child, you may provide your own ID and proof of address. We will also ask you to pay any outstanding fines on your own card before you register your child.

Using Your Library Card

What are your borrowing rules? (No. of items, checkout length, fines, etc.)

MAXIMUM NUMBER OF ITEMS PER CARD: 75
ITEM LOAN
PERIOD
FINE PER ITEM
PER DAY
MAXIMUM
FINE
LIMIT RENEWAL?
Books & Audiobooks 14 days $2.00 50 Yes
E-Books & E-Audio 14 days 20
Music CDs 14 days $2.00 Yes
Magazines 14 days $2.00 10 No
Nonfiction DVDs 14 days $1.00 $10.00 No
Entertainment DVDs 3 days $1.00 $10.00 6 No

Where can I check out and return materials?

You can choose any of our branch locations to pick up, check out, or return materials. When requesting materials through our catalog, please be sure you indicate at which branch you would like to pick them up at the time you place the hold. You may find the locations and hours of our branches at the bottom of our website.