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Alert COVID-19 Update

Harvard University and Harvard Law School shifted to remote teaching and learning, as of Monday, March 23. For more information and the latest updates, please visit the HLS coronavirus information page.


At the beginning of the academic year each resident is issued a set of keys: an internal room/apartment key, and a mailbox key. All exterior building entrances are unlocked using a student’s Harvard ID card. In order to receive keys, students will need to have previously signed their housing license or lease, and present a Harvard ID or photo ID such as a passport or driver’s license.

For security purposes, no other student or relative can be given access to a resident’s room. The duplication of any key issued to you for the HLS Residence Halls or Apartments is strictly prohibited, nor should residents ever loan their keys to anyone else. Key duplication and loaning are serious security breaches that may result in disciplinary action including fines and/or termination of your housing license or lease and may be referred to the Administrative Board.


Many of the rooms and apartment doors lock automatically, so be sure to take your key with you whenever you leave your room or apartment. Residents who lock themselves out of their rooms should first seek their Resident Assistant, who has a set of master keys for just such a purpose, or if unavailable, another Resident Assistant in the building. Residential students can also stop by the Facilities Management Office in Holmes Hall 4 to temporarily check out a key, which they will need to return immediately after getting into their room and retrieving their own keys. If it is outside of normal business hours and no Resident Assistant is available, residents should call Harvard University Police at 617-495-1215 and ask for the Law School Security Guard to be dispatched to let you back in to your room or apartment.

Lockout Policy

Starting on September 1st of each academic year, all lock-outs performed by Resident Assistants, Facilities, and Security staff will be tracked and documented. Lockouts include borrowing a room key and/or building lockout card from the Facilities office, as well as being let into your room by a staff member. Once a resident has reached 3 lockouts, a lockout fee of $50 will be billed to the resident’s account for each lockout thereafter. There is a grace period in which lockouts are not counted or charged during the month of August only.


Lost Keys

Residents who have lost their keys may obtain a temporary replacement key from the Facilities Management Office during regular business hours. Residents should actively try to find their lost keys and return the replacement keys to the Facilities Management Office promptly. If the original keys are not found within one week, the original keys are assumed to be lost and you will be charged a replacement fee:

  • Room Key: $150
  • Mailbox Key: $25
  • Both Keys: $175
  • Borrowed Facilities access ID card (Facilities “lock out card”): $150, if not returned
  • Replacement Lock/Key Core: $300

These charges will billed on the next e-bill. Should the original keys be found after the change has already occurred, the resident should return the keys to the Facilities Management Office immediately and the fee may be reduced in half, if the key has been lost for less than a month. Keys play a vital role in the security of HLS Housing, so it cannot be emphasized enough how important it is for residents to take care of their keys.