Borrowing Library Materials
With a standard Talbot County Free Library card in good standing, you
may have up to 50 items checked out at a time, including no more than
4 DVDs, 25 CDs or audiobooks, and 1 Playaway Launchpad. Teacher's Cards
can be used for checking out up to 50 books. Other item types must be
checked out on a standard personal card. Please bring your library
card with you when checking items out.
Library cards can become temporarily “blocked” under certain
conditions, which means the patron cannot check out additional items,
renew current items, or use library computers, until the account
problem is resolved. Situations in which a card may be blocked include
an unpaid balance of more than five (5) dollars, an annual need to confirm or update
current address, lost items, more than 20 overdue items, or more than
6 items overdue for longer than 51 days.
For information on getting a library card, see...
Loan Periods, Renewals and Fines
The following chart outlines the loan periods, renewals, and overdue
fines applicable for the various types of library materials.
||Daily Overdue Fines
|Adult Books (except new)
||1X for 28 days
||1X for 14 days
& Teens' Books
||1X for 28 days
||1X for 14 days
|Interlibrary Loan Items
||Set by Lending Library
|Teacher's Card Loans (Books)
* Regardless of remaining renewals, an item can be renewed only if
there is no outstanding hold request on it, and your account does not
have an unpaid balance of more than five (5) dollars. As a courtesy, our system
automatically renews expiring items that are eligible for renewal.
Items eligible for renewal can be renewed through the My Account
section of our online catalog, or by calling or visiting either of our
library locations with your library card. If an item has not been
renewed before its due date, and it is eligible for renewal, our
system will attempt to automatically renew the item. Many items can be
renewed once, for the same length of time as the original
checkout. However, there are exceptions.
DVDs, Playaway Launchpads, Interlibrary Loan materials, and items
borrowed on a special Teacher's Library Card cannot be renewed. Items
that can fill an outstanding hold request by another patron, cannot be
renewed. Items that are long overdue (more than 51 days overdue)
cannot be renewed. If your library account is “blocked” for any
reason, your items cannot be renewed until the problem with your
account has been addressed. Situations in which a card may be blocked
include an unpaid balance of $5 or more, an annual need to confirm or
update current address, lost items, more than 20 overdue items, or
more than 6 items overdue for longer than 51 days.
Items returned to the circulation desk at the Easton or the
St. Michaels branch of the Talbot County Free Library can be received
and removed from your account on the spot, no matter which branch the
item was originally checked out from. Both branches also have book
drops available to accept returns when the library is closed.
Because of reciprocal borrowing agreements, libraries throughout the
state of Maryland can accept returns of each other's books. Be aware
that books returned to a county library system other than the one
where the item was checked out, may take some time returning there,
before it will be officially checked in and removed from your account.
Fines and Fees
Overdue Fines - Items returned to the library after their due date
will accrue fines according to the chart shown above (under Loan
Periods, Renewals and Fines). In many cases, renewing an item before
or after the due date may be possible, which will extend the loan
period and prevent any additional fines from being applied until the
new due date.
Other fees the library charges include the following:
Library Cards - New cards are free for Maryland Residents, with a $1
charge for replacement cards. Out-of-state residents can sign up for a
library card for a $25 annual (?) fee.
Printing and Photocopying - Computer printouts are $0.10 per page for
black and white or $0.25 per page for color printouts. Photocopies are
$0.15 per page for black and white or $0.25 per page for color
copies. The library does not offer a fax service. However, there is no
cost when using the photocopier to scan a document and send it to an
Out of State Interlibrary Loans - Interlibrary loans from libraries
within Maryland are free of charge. Materials borrowed from outside
the state of Maryland incur a $5 fee.
Lost or Damaged Materials - Full replacement costs will be charged for
each item lost or damaged. The library does not accept replacement
materials. In the case of Playaway Launchpads, the device replacement
cost varies depending on the unit, but the cost to replace the charger
is $10 and the cord is $7.
Returned Checks - A $25 fee will be charged for returned checks.
Service Charge for Material Recovery - If an account is past due for long enough to
be sent to Unique Management Services, Inc. for collections proceedings according
to our Materials Recovery Program described below, a $15 service charge will be
added to the balance.
Materials Recovery Program
The Talbot County Free Library has established a materials recovery
program to encourage library patrons to return books, DVDs, and other
materials on time. Patrons who have long overdue materials and
accumulated fines totaling $25.00 or more will be referred to Unique
Management Services, Inc., a collection agency specializing in the
recovery of outstanding library materials and funds.
When Items are 21 Days Past Due...
- The library sends you an overdue notice.
When Items are 55 Days Past Due...
- The library sends a final overdue notice that includes fines, fees and
When Items are 89 Days Past Due...
- If your account balance equals $25 or more, the library forwards your account
to Unique Management Services, Inc., a library materials recovery agency.
- A service charge of $15 is added to your account.
- Unique Management Services will contact you to request the return of the
overdue materials and payment of all outstanding charges.
- Over the next 120 days the collection agency will make multiple attempts to
contact you. If you do not return the overdue materials and complete or
establish a payment plan, your account will proceed to the stage listed below.
Note: Activity on a patron's account can alter the timeline.
If you have questions about your library account related to the Materials Recovery
Program, please contact the Adult Services Librarian at 410-822-1626.
Thank you for helping us ensure that everyone has access to materials at the Talbot
County Free Library.