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How to Get a Library Card

Application Forms

You can save some time on your first visit by filling out one of our application forms in advance, printing it out, and bringing it with you.

Do I need a card?

If you already have a Minuteman Library Network library card, perhaps issued by another Minuteman member, you can use it here without further ado. Only a few of our services, such as the loaning of museum passes, are restricted to Brookline residents.

Who can get a card?

Residents of Massachusetts, employees of the Town of Brookline, students in Brookline public or private schools, and owners of property in Brookline may be issued a Minuteman Library Network card at the Public Library of Brookline or one of its branches. You do not have to go to your hometown library to get a card.

What do I need to bring with me to get a card?

Adults must present a picture ID (MA driver's license or Massachusetts state identification card with current address).

If your photo ID does not have your current address on it, please bring along one document from each of the following two sections:

    1. Proof of identification –current or expired-- (must include name and photo)
  • Passport
  • Alien Resident Card
  • Government issued cards, such as Military ID
  • State issued photo ID including welfare, Medicaid or FID card
  • University or school ID
    2. Proof of current local address* (must include applicant’s name)
  • Utility bill or tax bill (dated within the last 60 days)
  • Imprinted bank check or deposit slip
  • Official letter verifying residency and mailing address dated within last 30 days from a social service provider, temporary employer that provides housing, or a short-term residence
  • Postcard mailed to applicant from the library

No longer acceptable as proof of current address: Lease agreements, rent receipts, and personal letters. Also, a Post Office Box or business address is not sufficient – a current residential address is required.

What about my kids?

We will issue cards to children ages 3 to 12 with a parent or guardian present; the parent or guardian must sign the child's application form and provide proof of address. We will also issue cards to children on organized school visits if the child brings a previously signed application form, as long as we can verify the child's address from an official school roster or list. We will issue a card to a young person aged 13 to 17 with student ID as long as we can verify address. If no student ID is available, a parent or guardian must be present at the time of application.

I have a card from a non-Minuteman Massachusetts library. Do I need a Minutetman library card?

All non-Minuteman library networks, including the Metro-Boston Library Network, maintain separate databases of patrons, and we have no way of checking them. So we need to register you with Minuteman if you want to borrow our items. You need to provide proof of address and photo ID as described above. However, you do not have to have a separate piece of plastic: we can enter your current library barcode in the Minuteman database and you will be able to use it here in Brookline and at all Minuteman libraries.

Out-of-State Residents who work, study, or own property in Massachusetts

Out of state residents who work in Massachusetts, are students in Massachusetts, own property in Massachusetts, or are temporarily living in Massachusetts for more than two months may be issued a Minuteman card in Brookline. The card will be set to expire in one year and will need to be updated annually.

All Out-of-State residents must provide positive identification and proof of their home address. Property owners must also provide ID such as a tax bill, utility bill, etc. for their Massachusetts property. Students must also verify their status with school identification and provide their school address. Out of state residents working in Massachusetts must provide their work address.

Other Out-of-State Residents

Out-of-State residents who do not meet any of the above criteria are always welcome to use materials inside the library without a library card. They can also obtain a borrower's card with the following:

  1. Annual payment of $25.00. Card will be set to expire one year from date of registration and will need to be updated annually. This card can be used only in Brookline. Other MLN libraries are not bound to accept it. A note to that effect will be added to your borrower record.
  2. Positive Identification.
  3. Proof of Current Address (not a Post Office Box).

Residents of decertified municipalities

The Board of Library Trustees reserves the right to deny library services to residents from any municipality whose public library has been decertified by the MBLC (Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners).