Schaffer Law Library

Schaffer Law Library

Schaffer Law Library is pleased to announce that it is open to alumni, members of the bench and bar, and the general public. While generally open daily, access and service hours may be limited during certain times of the year.  Refer to this chart and current hours prior to your visit. To visit the library, please sign in with security.


Explore Library Resources

Serving the information needs of the law school’s faculty, students, and administration lies at the very heart of Schaffer Law Library. Its collection, staffing, and provision of services are informed by the needs and wants of the law school community. The determination of what resources and services the library provides is due to its direct, informed, and responsive relationship with the faculty, students, and administration of the law school.

Contact information

Services Desk, includes Circulation and Reference

Schaffer Law Library Hours

Reference Desk Hours

  • Monday-Thursday - 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.; 1 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • Friday - 1 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Virtual Reference Desk Hours

  • Monday-Thursday: 4:30 p.m.-7 p.m. or by appointment during the academic year
  • Chat available on library portal

Use of the Library

  • Beverages are allowed in non-disposable, spill-proof containers.
  • Food is discouraged in the library.
  • Smoking is prohibited in the library.
  • With the exception of guide dogs, animals are not allowed in the library.
  • Library telephones are not available for public use.
  • As a consideration to library patrons, cell phone use is strongly discouraged.
  • All library patrons must immediately leave the building upon hearing the fire alarm.
  • Personal belongings (purses, laptops, book bags) should not be left unattended. The library is not responsible for their safekeeping.
  • Electronic resources (computers and databases) may only be used by Albany Law School students, faculty and staff.

Multi-Function Units/Printing

  • MFU machines can print, copy and scan.
  • MFU machines are available for patron use on all three library floors.

Borrowing Materials

  • Albany Law School students, staff and faculty - May borrow materials from the library with Albany Law School ID
  • Albany Law School alumni and licensed attorneys - May not borrow materials from the library
  • Visitors - May not borrow materials from the library
  • DAP cardholders - Faculty and staff of participating institutions may borrow

Policies and Procedures

The primary objective of the Reference Department is to provide information and services to
support the academic and research needs of Albany Law School’s students, faculty, and staff, as well as to the general public. Reference staff assists patrons in the location, use, and understanding of information resources, teaches effective search techniques, and trains in the use of library resources. Whenever possible reference staff will not only provide information and answers but will assist patrons to research independently.

Library Users

Our primary patrons are the law school's students, faculty, and staff. Services and facilities are available to the general public, though current members of the law school may be given priority in the use of any service.

Reference Services

Reference services include, but are not limited to, answering directional and general information questions, providing instruction in the use of library resources, assisting with the use of reference material, creating and maintaining a collection of reference material.

Services are provided in person at the reference desk and virtually through email. Chat reference service is available to Albany Law School students, faculty, and staff through the library catalog. Students, faculty, and staff may also make an appointment for a consultation with a librarian. 

The reference librarians cannot provide legal advice, interpret laws, or analyze the law under the facts of a particular case. This includes but is not limited to aiding in the drafting of legal forms or documents, answering questions concerning the statutes of limitations, or reading definitions or sections from legal materials over the phone. Reference librarians can suggest materials that might help a patron understand the nature of their problem and may explain how to locate and use materials in the collection. Library patrons needing assistance in understanding the nature of their legal problem are advised to consult an attorney, legal aid, or lawyer referral service.