The Law Library is closed to the public but open for faculty and law students. Most of the staff of these offices are working remotely and may be reached via email. For more information see our research guide.
The Washington University Law Library occupies portions of all five floors in Anheuser-Busch Hall, with entrances located on every floor of the law school and the public entrance located on the fourth floor.
Below you will find information on the library’s hours of operation along with detailed information on various library policies. While the primary policy issues are highlighted below, the list does not address all potential concerns and/or questions that may arise. If you have questions or seek clarification on any issue, please contact Dorie Betram, the Director of Public Services. For a list of all library personnel, please click here.
- Library Hours
The operating hours of the library are below. Law faculty, students and staff have 24/7 access to the Law Library. Access by the non-law school community is subject to change.
Fall and Spring Semester Hours
- Monday-Thursday 8:30 am to 10:00 pm
- Friday 8:30 am to 10:00 pm
- Saturday 10:00 am to 6:00 pm
- Sunday Noon to 6:00 pm
Library Closed December 24-25 & December 31-January 1, 2020
Winter & Intersession Hours: Dec. 13 – Jan. 13
- Monday-Friday 8:30 am – 5:00 pm
- Saturday-Sunday Noon-5:00 pm
Spring Break Hours: March 7 – March 14
- Monday-Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
- Saturday 12:00 am to 5:00 pm
- Sunday Noon to 6:00 pm
Summer Hours: May 15 – August 13
- Monday-Friday 8:30 am – 5:00 pm
- Saturday -Sunday Noon-5:00 pm
Non-Law Students and Members of the General Public
The Law Library is open to non-law students and to members of the general public during normal operating hours unless otherwise noted due to planned/unplanned closures (i.e. private events, or scheduled exam period).
Washington University Law Library observes the following holidays:
- Christmas – Library Closed
- New Year’s – Library Closed
- Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – Regular Hours (no professional staff available)
- Library Study Spaces
- 1st Floor: scattered throughout
- 2nd Floor: two large, quiet study spaces and throughout
3rd Floor: Crowder Courtyard, W.L. Hadley Griffen Student Commons (behind the cafe), quiet reading room number 303 and throughout
4th Floor: the Janite Lee Reading Room and throughout
5th Floor: throughout
- Circulation Policies: Access, Materials & Recalls
Circulation & Access
The Circulation Desk is staffed during all the hours that the library is open. To contact the circulation desk, please call (314) 935-6450. As in many law libraries, most material does not circulate. The law school provides scanners.
The primary mission of this library is to serve as a research library for the students and faculty of Washington University and members of the local bar association. The majority of the books in the library do not circulate. The types of books and their circulation status are as follows:
- The following types of materials are non-circulating: Multi-volume sets; Loose-leaf volume(s); and Periodicals.
- Reserve collection materials may be checked out for a two-hour period by presenting an ID at the Circulation Desk. These materials are for library use only and may be renewed if no one is waiting for their return.
- Law students may check Reserve collection materials out overnight one hour prior to the library’s closing. They are due back the next day within one hour of the library’s opening. Multivolume sets and looseleaf treatises do NOT circulate overnight.
Books checked out past the normal due date, whether overdue or renewed, are subject to recall. A patron who desires to have an item recalled should complete a ‘Recall Slip.’ They can be obtained at the Circulation Desk. They should be filled out in full including: the date, the name of the patron, the patron’s phone number, the patron’s address, and the author, title, and call number of the recalled volume. The Circulation Assistant will contact the patron who has the material checked out. It takes about two weeks (or more in some cases) to get patrons to return material that has been recalled. When the material is returned the requesting patron will be contacted. The requested material will be held at the Circulation Desk.
- Charges for Overdue & Lost Materials
Materials that are checked out and not returned to the Law Library are considered lost. The charge for lost library materials is the greater of $125.00, the original cost of the book, or the replacement cost of the book; plus a processing fee of $25.00. The processing fee reflects a fraction of the value of the time expended by library staff searching for and/or replacing the lost volume.
Unpaid lost book charges, an expired ID, an excessive number of books checked out, an excess number of overdue books, or failure to respond to library notices (e.g., overdue or recall notices) may result in your patron record being blocked.
- Reshelving Policy
It is not necessary to reshelve books you use. If you want to be helpful, please bring them to the Reshelving Alcove on the 4th floor across from the Service Elevator. Otherwise, you may just leave them on the table or in a carrel. We pick up materials left behind daily. If it looks to us like someone is still using the materials, we will leave the materials for a day with a note advising that they will be reshelved the following day.
Graduating students are sent notices in April detailing any books still checked out. If books are not returned, a hold will be placed on law student transcripts and on non-law student’s diplomas.
- Food & Drink Policy
Please take care when bringing drinks and snacks into the Law Library. Food and drink have the potential to damage books and computing equipment. Food attracts insects and rodents that will eat books. Spilled drinks can damage books, computers, and network/power connections.
Please keep food contained, use spill resistant drink containers, clean up any crumbs and spills, and place trash in the appropriate garbage or recycling receptacle.
- Reading Room Policy
The Reading Room is a Designated Quiet Study Space. Please conduct yourself accordingly and observe the following rules:
- Beverages in spill resistant drink containers are allowed
- Food is not allowed
- Configure your mobile phone so that incoming calls, notifications, etc. are not audible
- Take all of your belongings with you if you leave for more than just a few minutes
Take all conversations (including whispering) out of the Reading Room
- Seating Policy
JD students are not assigned permanent carrels. The tables and carrels throughout the library are available to all on a first-come, first served basis. If we see a space that appears to us to be in-use for more than a day, we will leave a warning notice. If the materials are not cleared, we will reshelve books and place personal items in the Lost & Found at the Circulation Desk.
- Noise & Cell Phone Policy
The Law Library is a quiet area for study and research. Please be respectful and courteous of others in your use of the Law Library. There are four group study rooms where groups of students may talk and study together.
As a courtesy to library users, cell phones must be turned off, or have the ringer set to “vibrate” while in the Law Library.
Please restrict your use of cell phones to the 4th floor library lobby, and the areas near the restrooms on the 2nd, 4th and 5th floors.
- Lost & Found Information
The Law School’s Lost and Found is at the Law Library Circulation Desk, located at the main entrance to the library on the Fourth Floor of Anheuser-Busch Hall. Items found in law school facilities (Anheuser-Busch and Seigle Hall) should be turned in to the Law Library Circulation Desk.
The library will hold found items for five business days after which items will be transferred to the University Lost and Found maintained by Campus Police as per their specifications.
For more information on the University Lost and Found, including a searchable database of items held by Campus Police, please click here.
If you have questions, please contact the Law Library Circulation Desk at (314) 935-6450.
- University Libraries
Level A instruction rooms 1 & 3
The 3rd floor of Olin library
The Chemistry Library:
Located in Louderman Hall
The East Asian Library:
Located on the east side of the campus
Located in Simon Hall