Patron Confidentiality

Limited Access Note

PUL is allowing a limited number of visitors with urgent research needs and a connection to the Princeton research community. To submit a request for consideration, please visit the EHS visitor page and complete the form linked on the right. Your sponsor must be a Princeton University faculty member, staff member, or graduate student. Please note that the Library will need to approve this form, not the sponsor's department head. Send completed forms to and include the collections that are required to complete on-site research. Allow three business days for review of requests.

Special Collections is accepting appointments for non-Princeton researchers on a very limited basis. Visitors interested in researching within Special Collections must first contact the department through their Ask Us! form. Requests to visit Special Collections will only be considered through this form.

Library records relating to an individual patron’s use of the Library and its resources are confidential. These records will not be disclosed to others except with the consent of the library patron, or as required by law. Our complete policy is below.

Policy on Confidentiality of Library Patron Records

As required under New Jersey law (N.J. Stat. § 18A:73-43.1 – 43.2), Princeton University Library records relating to an individual patron's use of the Library and its resources shall be treated as confidential. Accordingly, these records may be consulted and used only by library staff in the course of carrying out library operations, and will not be disclosed to others except upon the request or consent of the library patron. However, disclosure may be required pursuant to a subpoena, court order or other applicable laws, in which case such disclosure will be made only by Department Heads in consultation with the University Librarian and University Counsel and, to the extent permitted by law, only after giving advance notice to the patron.


18A:73-43.1. "Library," "library record" defined
    For the purposes of this act:

   a.   "Library" means a library maintained by any State or local governmental agency, school, college, or industrial, commercial or other special group, association or agency, whether public or private.

   b.   "Library record" means any document or record, however maintained, the primary purpose of which is to provide for control of the circulation or other public use of library materials.

   L. 1985, c. 172, s. 1, eff. May 31, 1985.
18A:73-43.2. Confidentiality; exceptions
    Library records which contain the names or other personally identifying details regarding the users of libraries are confidential and shall not be disclosed except in the following circumstances:

   a.   The records are necessary for the proper operation of the library;

   b.   Disclosure is requested by the user; or

   c.   Disclosure is required pursuant to a subpoena issued by a court or court order.

   L. 1985, c. 12, s. 2, eff. May 31, 1985.

1New Jersey Statutes: Title 18A. Education