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County Law Libraries

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Stanislaus County Law Library Supporting access to justice in Stanislaus County since 1893


The Stanislaus County Law Library was established by the Board of Supervisors in 1893 and has continuously provided service for more than 100 years. We are a public library, providing free access to legal information for the judiciary, members of the State Bar, public officials, and is available to everyone who needs to use materials unique to the task of legal research. Our mission is to help all persons access the judicial system by providing legal and educational resources and guidance on their use. The library is governed by a seven-member Board of Trustees pursuant to the California Business and Professions Code section 6300 et seq. The trustees are made up of Stanislaus County judges, members of the State Bar, and an appointee of and for the Chairperson of the Board of Supervisors. The Law Library is operated by a director and one full-time library assistant. Extra-help assistants provide coverage for vacation, sick-leave and events. Library staff is available to provide customers with reference assistance, assisting patrons in identifying and locating relevant text and online resources to answer and research legal questions. However, staff cannot give legal advice or assist with form preparation. Circulation (checkout privilege) is limited to qualified borrowers. To become a qualified borrower, please see a staff member. A copy of the qualified borrower application can be found here, and a copy of our circulation policy can be found here. Afterhours access is available to local attorneys and members of the Judiciary, subject to the Library’s afterhours policy. A copy of the after hours policy is available for download here and an application for after hours access is available for download here or from ask a Library staff member. Our collection is comprised of print and electronic resources, offering our patrons a broad selection of primary and secondary materials for both state and federal legal issues. We place a high priority on California based information. You can browse our catalog for a complete list of available materials. The Law Library provides additional services and resources, including continuing legal education materials, general legal education classes, conference room rental, reading and study rooms, public computers, printers, copiers, fax services, and document delivery.
Conduct - Our goal is to provide an environment conducive to productive Legal Research. For this reason, we ask all patrons to respect the quiet working environment of those around them. Cell phones and solicitation of any kind is strictly prohibited. Some areas of the Law Library, such as staff offices and breakrooms, are restricted. Appropriate clothing, including shirts, and footwear must be worn by Library patrons at all times. The use of electronic cigarettes and tobacco products is prohibited while in the Library. Food and beverages may only be consumed in a pre-designated area and must be covered. A complete copy of the Patron Conduct Policy can be found here. Patrons may be required to socially distance and wear masks and/or gloves while handling library materials during a public health emergency such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Stanislaus County Law Library is an essential component of access to justice in Stanislaus County, offering diverse and essential services to the public, the judiciary and the bar. We serve as some of our County residents’ only meaningful access to the information needed to participate in the legal system, resolve legal disputes, engage in commerce, or tend to personal affairs. As is the purpose of any public library, resources are made available to the patrons who would not otherwise have access to these materials. Legal research books and databases are costly and not readily available at general public libraries. Professionals in the field may not have private libraries vast enough to satisfy their research needs. Students of the law require access to multiple sources of information to assist in their studies and preparation for the State Bar exam. Members of the public need access to legal information as a means to represent themselves in court, especially meaningful to those who cannot afford legal representation. Members from each of these population subsets obtain access to important legal documentation through the Law Library.

Location & Hours

1101 13th Street Modesto, CA 95350 Mon-Fri 8am to 5pm Closed on Major Holidays