Library Cards

Renew your expired library card

You can now renew expired Library cards online. If you need to renew your card, but it has not yet expired, please call or visit your nearest Cleveland Public Library.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Permanent residents of Ohio
  • Those who go to school in Ohio
  • Those who work on a permanent basis in Ohio
  • Those who own property in Ohio

Only one card is allowed per individual, with the exception of library cards issued to teachers who work or live in Cuyahoga County.

Valid government-issued photo identification along with proof of current address (if not listed on the ID) is required for first-time, in-person use at the Cleveland Public Library. Until ID is provided, eCards obtained through the online application will be valid for electronic content (eMedia, databases and other digital materials) only.

Apply for a library card in person

Adults aged 18 and older must fill out an application and present valid government-issued photo identification along with proof of current address (if not listed on the ID). You can Print the Adult Library Card Application and bring it with you to any Cleveland Public Library location.

Acceptable forms of photo identification include: a driver’s license, state ID card, passport and US military ID.

Acceptable proof of a current address: a printed personal check showing the current address, a utility bill or postcard with a recent (within last 30 days) postmark received at the address shown on the application.

For versions of the Library Card Application in other languages, please visit this link to download files.

Golden Buckeye

The Library does not charge overdue fines for circulating materials borrowed by patrons aged 60 and over, or those who are totally and permanently disabled. To qualify, the patron must present a permanent Golden Buckeye card issued by the Ohio Department of Aging at the time of application.

Homebound persons in Cuyahoga County who wish to obtain a library card and to use the Library’s services should call 216-623-7005.

Juvenile Patrons

Youth aged 17 and under may apply for a Juvenile card with or without a parent or other adult. Identification is not required for the applicant, but they must be present at the time application is made. If an adult is present to sign the application, the adult must present a valid, government-issued identification and not have a library account that has been referred for collection.
If an adult is not present to sign the application, the child will be issued a Scholar Success card.

A Scholar Success card is valid for up to 10 items from the Cleveland Public Library collection as well as access to our electronic resources and public computers.


Teachers from public and private, parochial, and charter schools as well as licensed child care centers can apply annually for a Cleveland Public Library Educator Card.

Complete and print the Educator Card Application form and bring it along with identification to any Cleveland Public Library location.

Acceptable identification for educators include:

  • a current school-issued or program-issued photo ID;
  • a current letter on the school’s or program’s letterhead confirming employment and state issued photo ID;
  • or, during a class visit, a state issued photo ID (no letter necessary).

Library card privileges must be renewed every two years. Educator Cards must be renewed annually. Valid photo identification and proof of current address must be presented when renewing library privileges. (More information)

Using your Card

Your valid library card entitles you to:

  • Charge out and place holds on materials from any Cleveland Public Library or CLEVNET library.
  • Access electronic content including eMedia, databases and other digital materials.
  • Computer access at the Library.
  • Access to the Cleveland Digital Public Library and TechCentral MakerSpace.
  • Much more!

Protect your card

  • Protect your card as you would a credit card. You are responsible for all materials checked out on your card.
  • If your card is lost or stolen, report it immediately.

Your library account

  • Keep your information current. Let us know when your address, phone number or email changes so you will receive notifications on time.
  • To update your address, bring a valid, government-issued photo identification to any CPL location, along with proof of current address (if not already on ID).
  • You can update your email and phone number online.

Access your account online

  • Access your account through the My Account link at
  • Your password is either the last four digits of your phone number or the month and day (MMDD) of your birth unless you specified a different password.
  • Passwords can contain letters and numbers and can be changed on the Personal Information tab of your online account.

Your online account allows you to:

  • View and renew materials that you have checked out.
  • Place, view or modify holds.
  • View and pay fines.
  • Modify your hold and overdue notifications.
  • Create personalized lists.

Due Dates

  • Although the standard loan period is 21 days, loan periods may vary depending on the format and owning library.
  • Be sure to check your check-out receipt to determine the due date for each item.
  • Most materials can be renewed multiple times, provided there are no holds for those items.

Returning Materials

  • CPL and CLEVNET materials may be returned to any CPL or CLEVNET location.
  • Specialty materials, such as those borrowed through Interlibrary Loan or reference loans must be returned to the location specified when the material is checked out.
  • Digital checkouts (eBooks and other eMedia) are returned automatically.

Overdue Materials

The Library does not charge overdue fines for items owned by the Cleveland Public Library. Other fees, including those for lost items, damaged items, referral fees, etc. as detailed on the Fines & Fees Schedule, may still be charged. Overdue fines may still be charged on items owned by other CLEVNET member libraries, based on the lending policies of those libraries.

If an item is more than 28 days past due you will be sent a bill for the replacement cost of the item(s) via email or postal mail. If you return the item, any overdue fines charged by Cleveland Public Library will be removed from your account.

If your account remains $50.00 or more past due, your account may be referred to Unique Management Services (UMS), a library materials recovery agency. A non-refundable fee is added to your library account to cover the cost of the recovery service. UMS will contact you by mail and/or phone to resolve the account.