Confidentiality Of Patron Records


Statement of Policy & Text

All patron records are confidential. No library employee shall reveal the identity of a borrower to any requestor or make known in any manner any information contained in patron records except in accordance with the Requirements & Guidelines (see below).

With the exception of library personnel performing their required library duties, patron records may only be disclosed to:

  • The patron himself/herself upon verification of identity
  • Parents of minor children under specific circumstances (See "Minor Patrons" under Requirements & Guidelines below.)
  • Anyone with written consent of the patron involved
  • Under court order or subpoena, in which case library staff are to refer all requests for the above information to library management.

The implementation and interpretation of this policy is the joint responsibility of the library management.

Need for the Policy

The Library has the responsibility to protect each individual library user''s right to confidentiality and privacy relating to information sought or received and materials consulted, borrowed, or acquired.

Requirements & Guidelines

Minor Patrons
If a SJPL library cardholder is under the age of 18, the parent or guardian who signed for the child’s card may be given specific information regarding that child's record.

  • If the parent or guardian is in possession of the child''s card, they may be given any information in the child’s record.
  • If the child''s card is not in the parent''s or guardian''s possession, the information provided will be limited to:
    • Materials that are overdue, lost, or damaged
    • Fines owed

Patron Records
The records referred to in this policy, whether print or electronic, include but are not limited to:

  • Circulation records from any library department
  • Interlibrary loan requests
  • Patron book requests
  • Computer booking records
  • Reference requests received in person, via email, telephone, or virtual reference
  • All other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities or services including computer usage

The confidential information in these records includes, but is not limited to:

  • Subjects researched
  • Materials consulted
  • Individual titles borrowed
  • Patron name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, social security number

Applicable Personnel/Departments

All Library units, departments, and branches




Reviewed and approved by:Signature/NameDate of Approval
KMTRuth Kifer, John Wenzler, Mary Nino, Luann Budd, Anne Cain, Neil Rufino, Sandra Stewart, Katie Dupraw2/21/2013

History & Dates

Category of Policy: User Services
Author(s): SJPL Library Assistant Access Services, Gayle Davis
Senior Collections Access Coordinator, Randy Anderson
Authorized by: KMT
Date Written: 10/17/02
Date Effective: 8/1/03
Date(s) of Revision(s): 06/02/04dk, 4/11/05; 7/05; 8/05, 2/21/2013


A. American Library Association Code of Ethics
B. Constitution of the United States of America, First Amendment
C. California State Government Code, section 6250 – 6270