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Get a Library Card

Library cards are free for residents of Lincoln/Lancaster County. Non-resident cards are $15 for three months or $60 for one year. Non-resident summer cards (valid during the dates of the Summer Reading Program) are available for $5.

For Lincoln and Lancaster County residents, regular cards do not expire, but an annual address check needs to be done to keep the card active. If you move or change contact information, please notify us so we can make the change on your record. Cards that are not used to check out physical items for several years may be deleted from the system. (Using a card only for our online resources, including e-Books, will not keep the card from being deleted.) 

Limited Use cards expire after 1 year, but may be renewed on a limited status or upgraded to an Adult or Youth Resident card with the proper forms of identification.

You must be present when applying for a library card. Identification requirements depend on your age.

Adults (19 years of age or older) will need to provide current photo identification. Identification must include photo, name, and current address within the City of Lincoln or Lancaster County. Examples of accepted forms include:

  • Current driver’s license
  • State ID card
  • Passport

If the above documentation is not available, any 2 of the following forms of identification are acceptable for adults, provided one shows a photo and name and the other the applicant’s current address Lincoln/Lancaster County. Examples include:

Current college or university photo ID, employee photo ID, or Armed Services ID
Medicare/Medicaid card
Birth certificate
Motor vehicle registration
Current rent bill* or lease agreement
Statement from a homeless shelter/rehab/residential facility*
Bank statement*
Any piece of mail delivered by the US Post Office*

*Note: these must be dated within the last 30 days, as indicated by the postmark, date of printed e-bill/receipt, or dated statement.

If you don’t have any identification that meets these requirements with you when you apply for a library card, we can still provide you with a limited use card that will allow you to check out up to 5 items at a time and allow off-site access to our online resources. Limited use cards expire after 1 year. If the required information can be provided within that time, the limited use cards will be updated to regular adult cards.

Youth (18 years of age or younger) must live in Lincoln or Lancaster County. A full address must be provided; a telephone number and/or e-mail contact information is highly desirable. A guarantor (parent or legal guardian, including those who are unmarried minors) is required to be with the youth at the time of registration and must verify the accuracy of registration information including name, date of birth, guarantor information, address, telephone, and e-mail. A guarantor may verify information for a youth patron even if the guarantor is not registered as a Lincoln Adult City Resident or Lincoln Adult County Resident.

If a guarantor (parent or legal guardian) is not present at the time of registration, a limited use card can still be issued, with a check-out limit of 5 items. When the youth customer is accompanied by a guarantor (parent or legal guardian), library staff will ask that adult to verify the customer’s registration information including name, date of birth, guarantor information, address, phone number, and email address. will then change the customer’s Borrower Category to Lincoln Youth City Resident or Lincoln Youth County Resident, as appropriate. If a guarantor never accompanies the youth customer to the library, the card will expire on the customer’s 19th birthday, at which time the card will be changed to an Adult Limited Use card.

An eCard is a temporary electronic Library card that will provide instant access to our online resources and digital materials. It also allows you to place holds on items in the library catalog. eCards are good for 60 days. To continue using Library services after that, or to check out physical items, you will need to visit a Library location to update to a full access card by showing photo ID and proof of your current address. Information on identification needed to receive your permanent card is below. You must be a Lincoln/Lancaster County resident to apply online for a library card. Non-residents must apply in person for a Non-Resident card (fees apply). If you already have a Lincoln City Libraries account, you do not need an eCard. If you have an account but have lost your card or forgotten your PIN, please contact staff at any of our locations for assistance.

Register here for an eCard.

Lincoln City Libraries is working together with Lincoln Public Schools to ensure that all students have an account at the public library. A separate library card is not needed. Students can access their public library accounts using their school identification number. Please see our Library OneCard Accounts page for more details.

The Lincoln City Libraries card can be used at all of our locations.

If you have an Omaha Public Library (OPL) card, you may get a Lincoln City Libraries card to borrow materials and use Library services without having to pay a non-resident fee. You will still need to complete a registration form and verify your identity and address. Library staff will need to see the OPL card. Items checked out need to be returned to a library in the city in which they were checked out; OPL will not accept LCL items for return, and LCL will not accept OPL items for return.

To make a change to your name, address, email, or phone please contact staff at any of our library locations in person or by phone. It is not necessary to replace your library card when you update your account.

If your card is lost or stolen, immediately notify us; you can use this online form, or call or stop in at any of our locations. As soon as possible, bring identification with you to one of our libraries to get a new card. There is no fee to replace lost cards.

If your card is worn or damaged, simply ask for a new card at the Checkout Desk the next time you are at one of our libraries. There is no fee to replace worn or broken cards.

A password (usually a 4-digit PIN) is needed to use the 24-hour telephone renewal system (402-441-8506) or to access your account online. It is also needed for using most of our online resources from outside of the Library. If you got your library card prior to April 27, 2015 your PIN was changed to the last 4 digits of the home phone number we had listed on your library account.

If you’ve forgotten your password or PIN, library staff at any of our locations can reset it for you; please call or stop in during our open hours. Be sure to have your library card number when you call. If you want to change your password or PIN, you can ask staff to change it, or you may change it yourself by logging into your account (on the Internet or on one of our catalog computers) and clicking on “change my password.”

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