State of Nebraska Expands Options for Grants to Small Businesses Affected by COVID-19 Pandemic – New Deadline of July 17

Nebraska has re-opened and expanded its program by which certain small businesses will be eligible for grants from the state to help address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Businesses can begin applying immediately with a deadline of July 17, 2020.

Most businesses with 75 or fewer employees will be eligible.  The number of employees is based on head count and not full-time equivalents.  The initial program was limited to businesses with at least five and no more than 49 employees, so businesses with fewer than five and from 50 to 75 employees should reexamine the option of applying. Certain classes of businesses are excluded (see below). Applicants must be able to demonstrate a negative economic impact due to the pandemic.

Sole proprietors (one employee) are eligible so long as the business has withheld taxes for said employee as of March 13, 2020.

Funds can be used for working capital and for operating expenses not otherwise covered by insurance or other assistance programs.

Businesses excluded include:

  • Mining
  • Utilities
  • Finance and Insurance
  • Management of businesses
  • Education
  • Public administration
  • Lobbying
  • Businesses delinquent on Nebraska taxes
  • Businesses debarred or suspended from federal programs

The grants will not be awarded competitively but will be awarded to eligible applicants on a first-come first-serve basis.  It is anticipated that each eligible business will receive a minimum of $12,000.

The website for the program is here.  Frequently asked questions are here.  The application process can be begun here.

Please call your Vandenack Weaver attorney at 402-504-1300 or for more information.

© 2020 Vandenack Weaver LLC
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New Nebraska Law’s Impact on Filing Requirements for Corporations and Partnerships

LB 512 signed into law on May 30th, 2019, requires all S Corporations, limited liability companies, and partnerships with Nebraska source income to file a Nebraska return for all tax years beginning on or after January 1st, 2019.

Previously, S Corps, LLCs, and partnerships had to file a Nebraska income tax return if they had nonresident owners and were apportioning income.

The Nebraska Department of Revenue (DOR) encourages all S corporations, limited liability companies, and partnerships to e-file their pass-through entity returns. A Nebraska state ID is required when e-filing a pass though entity return.

A pass-through entity without an assigned Nebraska identification number will need to apply for a number before e-filing a 2019 Nebraska tax return. If your business does not have a Nebraska Tax ID Number, follow the link below to the Nebraska Department of Revenue to register your business.

© 2019 Vandenack Weaver LLC

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Employers in Nebraska and Iowa Should be Aware of Changes in Pay Discrimination Lawsuits

A recent court case, stemming from an Iowa employer, may have a significant impact on how employers throughout Nebraska and Iowa view pay differential between employees. On April 3, 2017, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Dindinger v. Allsteel, Inc., a case pertaining to gender based pay discrimination. In the ruling, the Court suggested that market forces and economic conditions, often used as an affirmative defense in pay discrimination claims, may not be sufficient as a defense without a clear connection. The result is that an employer may not be able to assert that economic conditions are the reason for pay differential between men and women without being able to show how the economic conditions caused the pay differential for the specific employees in question.


This case stems from an Iowa furniture manufacturer, where three female employees claimed gender based pay discrimination. As an affirmative defense, the business argued that market forces and economic conditions were the reason for the pay differential, not gender discrimination. This affirmative defense is often raised by employers and, generally, does not require a specific correlation between the economic condition and the employee. However, the Court in this case noted that to successfully argue the “factor other than sex” defense, the business must show how economic conditions directly resulted in the pay differential. For employers in the Court’s jurisdiction, including those in Nebraska and Iowa, an increased burden may exist when asserting the market forces affirmative defense and could necessitate taking action before any potential pay discrimination claims arise.


Employers should recognize the added challenge of defending pay discrimination lawsuits and, potentially, take preemptive action by auditing current pay and employment practices. A copy of the opinion can be found at the following link:

© 2017 Vandenack Weaver LLC
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Selecting the Right Entity for Your Tech Startup

Nebraska, and neighboring Midwest states, have developed a reputation as the “Silicon Prairie,” a prime location for technology startups. The recent tech startup boom in the Midwest can be attributed to the lower cost of living, knowledgeable tech labor force, and willingness of the community to embrace the startup. For many of these startups, besides the intense need to develop and protect the technology, a common issue is picking the right business entity structure.


In picking the right entity for the startup, several considerations should be weighed, including the need for liability protection, how the company will fund operations, and the most beneficial tax status. For example, if a tech startup is developing a product that will take a substantial period to produce, and likely need multiple rounds of equity financing involving institutional investors, with other funding coming through debt, the demand for classes of shares, preferences, and conversion rights, may require that the startup to form as a C-corporation, with corresponding tax status. On the other hand, if the startup only intends to have one round of equity financing, through a “friends and family” offering, a limited liability company may be appropriate, providing additional flexibility to select tax status.


Picking the right type of entity is important for the success of a tech startup, with many considerations to weigh. Ultimately, as facts change, it may be possible to change the structure of your company, but initial selection should not be taken lightly and can reduce problems as your company grows.

© 2017 Vandenack Weaver LLC
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Changes in Local Sales and Use Tax Rates – Nebraska

Effective January 1, 2017, certain Nebraska cities and villages will increase sales and use tax rates. The village of Meadow Grove enacted a new local sales and use tax rate of 1.5%. Elmwood, Weeping Water, and Wilber will increase sales and use tax rates to 1.5% and the city of Papillion will increase its local sales and use tax rate to 2%.

Consumers should be aware that there will be additional sales tax on purchases in these areas. Retailers should be ensure that they are prepared to appropriately collect and remit the increased sales tax beginning January 1, 2017.

For more information regarding the sales and use tax rate increases, sales and use tax compliance, and related information, visit the Nebraska Department of Revenue’s website, available at

© 2016 Vandenack Weaver LLC
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