Service Fees

For full Service Fees information, see the Service Fees Policy.

Is the Library no longer issuing fines?
The Hamilton Public Library is not charging fines for its materials as of May 2021. This ensures access to the library without fear of fines and supports the community.

What about fines accumulated before the Library went fine-free?
All fines were cleared from Members’ Library accounts. It’s a fresh start for everyone.

What about fees for lost or damaged items?
In August 2020, all Member Library accounts were given a fresh start. Lost or damaged Digital equipment or Interlibrary Loans after the fresh start will be charged a fee.

I want to borrow Library materials, but I have large fines on my account, what can I do?
All fines were wiped from Members’ accounts. See the Borrowing Policy for more information. 

My account is blocked, can you tell me why?
Accounts may be blocked for several reasons: an incorrect address or phone number, the borrowing limit is reached, material is missing (ex. a disc from a CD set). To discuss why your account is blocked, please contact us. Digital resources continue to be available.

I have a lost or damaged item ‑ will I be billed for it?
The Library collects fees for digital equipment or Interlibrary loans. The Library has waived fees for lost or damaged Collection items. Please return your item to the closest branch and chat with staff.

How can the Library afford go fines free? Who is paying for this?
The amount collected by service fees declines annually and takes a lot of staff time. HPL now offers a pay-it-forward donor fund to support programming, collections and more.

I would like to pay for an item that is damaged or lost, can I do this?
Yes. Please donate or contact HPL to contribute to the Library’s programs and services.

How else can I help the Library?
There are several ways you can help HPL:

What does HPL do with the donations?
The Pay-It-Forward Fund support materials purchases, programming and quality learning resources.

There are four areas donors can direct their contributions:

  1. Most Needed Use
  2. Kids’ Learning Fund
  3. Fines Forgiveness
  4. Local History & Archives Collections

Are tax receipts offered?
Tax receipts for donations made in person are issued for all donations of $25 or more, upon request. Donations made online at for $3 or more are issued a tax receipt by Canada Helps.