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Remember to take proper precautions to protect your valuables; do not leave valuables unattended in the classroom or any other public area at any time. HLS is not responsible for any loss of personal property.

If you have either lost or found an item on the HLS campus, the guidelines below will help you turn it in or check whether it has been discovered.

Found Items

  • If you encounter a personal item that appears to have been left behind, please look around to ensure it is not just temporarily unattended.
  • If you determine it is lost, please deliver it to the HLS Facilities Office in Holmes Hall, Room 4, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. After regular business hours, you may contact Campus Safety by calling 617-495-5521 and pressing one. A safety officer will meet you and accept the item.
  • Facilities staff will record the name of the individual, a description of the item, and where and when it was found.


  • Items of limited value such as water bottles, umbrellas, gloves and small articles of clothing will be stored in the entry corridor of Holmes Hall. Storage bins are labeled and available to staff and students on the honor system.
  • Items of value such as phones, laptops, and watches will be held in HLS possession for 24 hours in a secure storage area. These items can be retrieved through facilities staff in Room 4 during this time. After the 24-hour period, unclaimed lost and found items of value will be transferred to Harvard University Police for further holding.

Owner Identification and Retrieval

  • If an item contains identification or contact information, facilities staff will attempt to notify the owner.
  • Owners will be required to confirm ownership by providing a description of the item at minimum. Proof of ownership may be required in some cases.
  • The HLS Facilities Office will maintain a record of valuable items turned in and retrieved.

Retention Period

  • Lost items deemed to be of value will be held by the Harvard University Police Department for a duration of 1 year before being donated, recycled, or properly disposed of.
  • Lost items that are deemed to have little value will be stored for 15 days, before they are considered unclaimed then donated, recycled, or disposed.

Please direct questions about lost or found items or this policy to HLS Campus Safety at or 617-495-5521.