What can I borrow from CCPL and for how long?

Charleston County Public Library is a fine-free library! Therefore, you will not incur fines or fees for returning items beyond the due date. However, if an item has not been returned within 42 days of its due date, CCPL will attempt to recover the item or the replacement cost, which may lead to a referral to Unique Management Services, a collection agency. 

Media Type Loan Period Borrow Limit
Books 28 days Unlimited
Audiobook CDs 28 days Unlimited
Audiobooks and eBooks 14 days 4/cardholder
DVDs and Blu-Rays 7 days 10/cardholder
New Books 14 days Unlimited
Telescopes 7 days 1/cardholder
Digital Magnifiers 14 days 1/cardholder
Kill-A-Watt Electricity
Usage Meter
7 days Unlimited
Sprint Mobile Hotspot 28 days 1/cardholder
Kajeet Mobile Hotspot 28 days 1/cardholder
Career Connection Kits 28 days 1/cardholder

Note: Reference or SC Room items cannot leave the library. Ask a librarian whether the library owns circulating copies.

Where do I return the items I borrowed?

Library materials may be returned to any CCPL branch or the Mobile Library. Book drops are available at all branch locations and are normally accessible 24/7.  

Items must be returned by the date printed on the receipt. If any item is not returned and is marked lost on a patron's record, the patron will be billed the replacement cost of the item, which may lead to a referral to Unique Management Service, a collection agency.  

My borrowed library item is lost/damaged. What do I do?

Library cardholders are responsible for the replacement cost of lost or damaged items. Please contact the branch the item was checked out from and ask for the Circulation department.

There is no fee to county residents for an initial library card. The replacement cost for media containers is $5; individual audio book cassettes or CDs cost $7.

What are the fees if items are not returned on time?

As of June 1, 2021, there are no fines for CCPL materials that are not returned on time. However, you must return borrowed materials by the due date. Otherwise, CCPL will attempt to recover the items or replacement costs, which may lead to a referral to a collection agency. 

Since CCPL no longer charges late fines, do I still have to pay the late fees on my account?

Yes, patrons are still responsible for paying fines or fees incurred prior to June 1, 2021.

Can I pay my fines electronically?

Patrons may pay replacement costs/fees by credit card, debit card or PayPal account via the Classic Catalog. Currently, CCPL is working to make that feature available within accounts on the main CCPL website. Payments may be made for an entire item fine or group of item fines or fees where the total exceeds $1.99. Partial payment of an item fine or payment of a fine less than $2 will not be accepted by credit card, debit card or PayPal account. 

Patrons can also pay by credit or debit card at self-check kiosks at any library branch.

What happens if I don't pay my fines?

CCPL first tries to recover the materials by sending emails directly to patrons who have requested account notifications via email. To update your email address for notifications, contact your local library branch). Once an item becomes 42 days overdue, it is considered lost and you will be charged the replacement cost for the item.  Accounts owing $25 or more are sent to Unique Management Services, a collection agency. The account is also blocked temporarily, restricting further borrowing.  

Although the majority of patrons return items on time and in good condition, there are a few who receive notifications and do not respond to overdue notices sent by the Library. It is important to have these items returned so they can be available for other patrons to use and enjoy. Patrons should ensure a current email is on their account’s record in order to receive updated late notices and other account notifications. Patrons may also sign up for text messaging account notifications. Message and data rates may apply based on wireless carrier. 

How do I prevent my account from going to collection?

The best way to avoid collection activity is to keep your account in good standing. This can be done by: 

  • Returning or renewing items before they become overdue. Items may be returned to any branch of the library

  • Taking advantage of renewals. Most items can be renewed twice, if there are no hold requests for that item from other patrons and your account is in good standing. You can renew items online by logging into your account with your Library Card Number and PIN by clicking the Log In link at the top of every page. You can also renew materials by visiting a branch library or by calling 843-805-6833. 

  • Contacting any branch of the library when items cannot be found. 

  • Updating your contact email address as needed to ensure that you receive overdue notices. To update your email for notifications, contact your local library branch

  • Signing up for e-mail notification and reminders to let you know as soon as possible if an item is overdue, and then responding to overdue notices promptly. To sign up for email notifications, contact your local library branch

  • Patrons may also sign up for text messaging account notifications. Message and data rates may apply based on wireless carrier. To sign up for text message notifications, contact your local library branch

What should I do if I turned in an item but my account shows it's still checked out?

Call the branch location where you returned the item and ask for the Circulation department.