The Washington University Law Library occupies portions of all five floors in Anheuser-Busch Hall, with the exception of the third floor. The public entrance to the Law Library is located on the fourth floor. Students, faculty, and staff also have swipe card access from numerous other entry points.

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

    Library Hours
    The Circulation Desk is open and staffed:

    Washington University Law students, faculty, and staff have 24/7 swipe card access to the library.

    The Law Library is open to non-law students and members of the general public Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted due to planned/unplanned closures (e.g. scheduled exam periods).

    Fall and Spring Semester Hours

    • Monday – Thursday:  8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    • Saturday – Sunday:  Noon to 4 p.m. (Circulation/Reserve services only)

    Intersession Hours
    Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

    Spring Break 2024 Hours
    Monday-Friday, March 11-15 | 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
    Closed Weekends March 9-10 and 16-17

    Summer Hours
    Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

    Library closed for the following University holidays: New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day, Friday after Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve & Christmas Day

    Circulation and Reserve Services only on the following University Holidays:
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and Labor Day

  • 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 (Law Community Only) and throughout
    • 4th Floor: the Janite Lee Reading Room (Law Community only, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday) and throughout
    • 5th Floor: (Law Community only, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday)
  • 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. The public is also welcome to use the collection but should not use the library as a study or workspace. 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.
  • Charges for Overdue & Lost Materials

    Lost Books

    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.

    Patron Blocks

    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

    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

    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.

  • 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 4th 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.

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