Cardholder Policy
Cardholder Requirements & Regulations

  1. Library cards are issued in order to identify eligible users and to determine the level of access to services and resources. Cardholders who are residents of Unicoi County have access to all library materials and services, unless restricted due to violation of library lending rules, policies, or regulations.
  2. All Unicoi County residents aged 18+ who meet the requirements laid forth are eligible for a library card.
    • A valid photo ID with a current address within Unicoi County or within a 20-mile radius is necessary for obtaining a library card.
    • If the address on the ID is not current, a piece of official mail, utility bill, piece of certified mail, lease agreement, etc., may be used to verify a current address. Any documentation submitted must be dated within 2 months of the current date.
    • Homeless/transient patrons may apply for a library card with a current form of ID. This patron classification is limited to 1 item. Items must be returned on time or late fees will accrue (max = $10.00). If items are lost, borrowing privileges will be revoked, but the patron will not be responsible for replacement and processing fines.
  3. Children must be 5 years old to qualify for a personal library card. Minors aged 5-17 must have a parent/legal guardian apply on their behalf and assume accountability of materials borrowed and financial responsibility for fines accrued for overdues and lost, damaged, or stolen materials.
  4. Minors must renew their cards upon turning 18 years of age and begin assuming legal responsibility for materials checked out and fines accrued. Any fines/fees on the minor’s old account must still be paid by the parent/legal guardian. Unpaid fines on the minor’s old account do not prevent card renewal or carry over to the new account.
  5. New library cardholders will be restricted to checking out two items for a four-week probationary period. The two-limit restriction will be lifted if materials are returned on time and no fines accrue for the duration of said period.
  6. Library accounts are updated annually to ensure the most current patron information is on file. Failure to annually verify information may result in privilege expiration.
  7. Replacement fee for a lost card is $1.00.
  8. Patrons with accounts carrying a balance of $5.00 or more may not check out or renew materials until balance is paid in full or a payment plan is established. Payment plans are developed on an as-needed basis at the Director’s discretion.
  9. In compliance with Tennessee Code 10-8-102, patron privacy will be observed and respected by staff. Only authorized users, parents or legal guardians will be provided detailed information on any library account.

Circulation Policy
Policy Statement

  1. To ensure materials are available to the public on an equitable basis, the Unicoi County Public Library (UCPL) sets limits on borrowed materials, loan periods, and renewals. Loan periods may vary based on patron classification, material format, publication date, or lending source.
    The loan or renewal of library materials owned by UCPL may be done in person, by telephone or online.
  2. Renewals of interlibrary loan materials must be done in person or by phone.
  3. New and main collection books may be renewed only if no holds exist. Materials may be subsequently renewed up to two times only if no holds exist.
  4. Extended loan periods may be available upon request at the time of checkout. Determined on an as-needed basis at the Director’s discretion.
  5. Items must be renewed before or on the original due date. Items not approved for renewal must be returned on the original due date. Failure to do so results in fine accrual and may create account restrictions.
  6. In case of inclement weather or other emergencies, the library may, at the Director’s discretion waive or reduce charges upon late return.
  7. If the cardholder claims to have returned materials, the library will search for the missing items for three months. Items not located within three months will be billed to the cardholder’s account. Additional items may not be checked out until billing issues are resolved. If a pattern of lost materials develops, restrictions may be placed on the patron’s account at the Director’s discretion.
  8. The library reserves the right to make some materials non-circulating and available only for in- library use.

NOTE: Items are expected to be returned on or before the due date printed on the receipt given at the time of checkout. The library sends overdue notices and tries to contact patrons as a courtesy, but it is not obligated to do so.

Loan Periods & Limits

New Books & Audiobooks14 Days
Homeschool Headquarters Materials14 Days
Main Collections: Print & Audiobooks28 Days
Lengthy Books (Adult 600+, Juvenile 500+ pages)56 Days
Interlibrary-Loan Books (outgoing)56 Days
DVDs7 Days

Item Limits

Total Borrowed Materials: Print & Audiobooks10 per minor’s card
20 per adult or family
15 per homeschool minor’s card
40 per homeschool adult or family (limit includes minor”s checkouts)
2 books per teen card (No A/V)
DVDs3 per individual or family

Hold Limits

Juvenile, Homebound, Senior and Teen10


Books & Audiobooks25¢ per day (maximum of $10.00 per item)
DVDs$1.00 per day (maximum $15.00)
Damaged or Lost BooksCost of book + $10.00 processing
Damaged or Lost Courier/ILL BooksCost of book + lending library’s fee