Library Policies

Visiting the Library

Alumni of the Law School, area attorneys, and the general public are welcome to use the Law Library during the posted hours.  Visitors are asked to show photo ID and sign the visitor's log at the Circulation/Reserve desk upon entering the library. 

Villanova University students and faculty, as well as students and faculty of other colleges and universities, may access the Law Library by presenting a current School ID.

For information about accessing our federal government documents collection, please see the Alumni & Visitor Information page.


  • There is an elevator that provides access to all floors of the Library next to the Library's main entrance.
  • The library elevator can only be operated by swipe card.  Visitors to the law library may borrow an elevator swipe card from the Circulation/Reserve desk.
  • Disabled patrons needing assistance with library materials should speak to circulation staff, a reference librarian or the Villanova public safety officer on duty.

Infringement of library policies may be a violation of the Villanova Law School’s Honor Code and referred to the Honor Board.  All graduating law students (J.D., LL.M. and M.T.) must return all library materials before being permitted to graduate.


Noise in the Law Library is usually confined to the Circulation/Reserve and Reference area of the first level. 

  • If unacceptable noise is reported (loud talking, discussions, loud whispering, laughing) in other areas of the Law Library, the Reference Librarian or a library staff member will remind the offenders of others’ need for a quiet study environment.
  • Unacceptable noise is noise that is bothering anyone who needs to work/study in the Library. Use of a Study Room is possible for Villanova law students only or offenders should exit the Library.
  • If there is no Reference Librarian or Library staff to notify, the Public Safety Officer at the desk at the main entrance to the Law School will ask the people who are being disruptive to be quiet or to leave or he/she will escort them out of the Library, if necessary. 

Cell phone use is prohibited in the library.  Please turn off your cell phone, put on mute or on vibrate when in the Library and exit the Library to use.  There are several dead zones in the Library.  Locations outside the Law Library are the best places to connect.

Study Rooms

Study Rooms are available for groups (two students or more) of Villanova Law students to use. A group may reserve the rooms for two two-hour blocks of time per day. Sign-up sheets are available at the Circulation/Reserve Desk.

Circulation Policies

Only law faculty, students and staff and Villanova University faculty may check out library material to use outside the library.  Villanova University graduate and undergraduate students, university or law school alumni or visitors have no borrowing privileges.

Borrowing periods for use OUTSIDE the law library:

Villanova Law Students
(J.D. and Graduate Tax)
28 days 2 renewals
Villanova University Faculty
28 days 2 renewals
Villanova law staff
28 days 2 renewals
Villanova law faculty
indefinite time frame 2 renewals

Note: Most of the items in our collection may not be checked out, i.e: statutes, case reporters, periodicals, administrative codes, parts of multivolume sets, and looseleaf works.

Borrowing periods for use INSIDE the law library:

Reserve Materials

  • All Reserve materials are for use IN THE LAW LIBRARY ONLY by all patrons.
  • All Reserve materials are loaned for one day. 
  • During reading days and examination periods, a two hour loan period is enforced.

At the Circulation/Reserve Desk, the Villanova Law School community’s requested reserve materials must be checked out through their online patron records.  Visitors must submit a valid ID card (university/law school ID or a Driver’s License) to use Reserve materials. 

The Circulation/Reserve Desk houses three categories of Reserves:

  • Permanent Reserve -- materials that require extra scrutiny
  • Class Reserve – materials that law professors reserve for the current semester for class use.
  • Hornbook Reserve – current editions of hornbooks, study aids and older examinations’ volumes (VILLANOVA LAW STUDENTS ONLY), bound by semester and date.


Renewals may be requested in person at the Circulation/Reserve Desk or by telephone at 610-519-7020.   The patron’s “My Library Account” in the online catalog will show what books are charged out and their due dates.  See loan periods and renewals information above.


Any checked out item may be recalled by the Villanova Law School community for their use.  The current patron will be notified of their shortened borrowing period and expected to return the material to the Circulation/Reserve Desk by the recall date.  The first patron may request that the library material be returned to him/her when the patron who requested the item is finished with it.


A member of the Villanova Law School community who wants to borrow an item that is not immediately available may place a hold on an item, i.e. already checked out.  We will place the hold and notify the requestor when the item is available.


The Circulation/Reserve staff will search for any library material that a member of the Villanova Law School community cannot find.  The search will be conducted within three days.  Since the library is prohibited from disclosing any patron information because of confidentiality, a recall will be initiated, if the item is checked out.  If the item is not found within the law library/school or owned by Falvey Library, Villanova University’s undergraduate library, an Inter-Library Loan request is suggested. 

Questions about printing and computer services in the law school should be directed to the VLS TechZone


There are 3 desktop computers in the Reference area on the first level of the Law Library and a few stationed in study carrels on the second and third levels of the law library. These computers require a Villanova University login but there is one additional terminal provided for guest use at the Reference Desk.


Visitor use of wireless computers is allowed.  Please ask for access information at the VLS TechZone located across from the Reference Desk.


  • Printers in the law school are networked and available for Villanova law faculty, students and staff ONLY. These printers/copiers are located at the end of the classroom corridors on all three floors, at the end of the cafeteria corridor, and on the main and 3rd floors of the library.
  • Printers/copiers are Wildcard-operated. Each student will be given a printing allowance each semester. Additional pages beyond that allowance will be available via charge to the law student's Wildcard.
  • Federal government document printing is available for visitors. Please contact the Circulation Desk for assistance. Visitors may also download documents to their own flash/stick drive or email the documents to themselves using a web-based email account (gmail, yahoo etc.). Flash drives are not available for purchase at the library. 


  • Copiers are located throughout the building and are Wildcard-operated.
  • Visitors may request a copy card at the library Circulation Desk.

Other Equipment 

The Law Library provides an electric stapler, regular and heavy duty staplers for library users.  There are also, a hole puncher, stapler removers, paper clips and scotch tape on the Circulation/Reserve Desk. 



Food and drink may be consumed in the library.  Please use a covered container to avoid spillage.  All patrons are expected to dispose of their trash and clean up after themselves.  Paper towels are available near the restrooms on each floor.

Collection Development Policy

The Law Libary's Collection Development Policy serves:

  • To articulate the Law Library’s current collection development philosophies and practices to the law school community
  • To guide the Law Library administration and staff responsible for providing access to materials to support the law school’s teaching and scholarship needs
  • To provide a framework for the Law Library administrators and staff members making decisions regarding the development, maintenance, preservation, and retention of the Law Library’s collection.

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Contact Us

Circulation Desk: 610-519-7020

Reference Desk: 610-519-7024

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