State Franchise Registration Status and Franchise Laws

Nebraska


Registration or Filing Required? Yes, Filing
Business Opportunity Laws? Yes

Nebraska is not a franchise registration state but does require a one-time filing for franchisors planning to offer or sell franchises in the state. More information can be found on the Nebraska Department of Banking and Finance’s Website.

How Do I File in Nebraska?

Filing in Nebraska is relatively simple if you qualify as a business opportunity or a franchise. Franchisors that are using a “national” FDD must submit a Notice of Exemption, along with a $100 filing fee to the Nebraska Department of Banking and Finance at PO Box 95006, Lincoln, NE 68508. This is a one-time filing and does not need to be done annually.

Alternatively, franchisors may register using a Nebraska-specific disclosure document. When registering with a Nebraska-specific disclosure document, the franchisor must ensure that it complies with the Nebraska Seller-Assisted Marketing Plan Act (the SAMP Act). While filing, the franchisor must include, a state-specific disclosure document, a list of names and residence addresses of individuals selling the franchise, and an initial filing fee of $100. The names and addresses must be resubmitted every 6 months, and there is an annual renewal fee of $50.

Does Nebraska Have Any Additional Franchise Laws?

Yes, Nebraska does have a Franchise Practices Act that applies to franchises where the franchisee maintains a place of business in Nebraska, the gross sales between the franchisor and franchisee exceeds $35,000 in the previous 12 months, and it is intended that more than 20% of the franchisee’s gross sales are derived from the franchise. It specifically excludes franchises that are “subject to any other statute of this state”, meaning that franchises that meet the federal definition of a franchise are exempt, since they are governed by the SAMP Act.

The Act defines a franchise as a written arrangement where the buyer pays a fee in exchange for a license to use the seller’s trademark, service mark, or related characteristic, and the parties have a common interest in marketing the goods or services under the agreement. It also includes any arrangement for the sale, distribution, or marketing of nonalcoholic beverages, but specifically excludes agreements related to the sale, distribution and marketing of petroleum products.

Among other things, the Act requires franchisors to have good cause for terminating or failing to renew a franchise agreement, and also requires them to provide franchisees with at least 60 days’ notice of the decision to terminate or not renew (with limited exceptions). Additionally, franchisors must provide franchisees with material reasons for rejecting the proposed transfer of the franchise agreement. Franchisors are also prohibited from:

  1. Requiring franchisees to agree to a release or waiver at the time they enter into a franchise agreement.
  2. Restricting the right of free association among franchisees.
  3. Requiring or prohibiting franchisees from changing management without good cause.
  4. Restricting the sale of equity or transfer of securities of a franchisee.
  5. Imposing unreasonable standards of performance on franchisees.

Fun Fact: If you think England is too far of a journey, you can always go see the famous Carhenge in Alliance, Nebraska. I’m sure it carries the same sense of awe as the real thing…