Nebraska has many laws regulating vehicles — from registration and insurance to window tinting and required equipment.
And we’re here to tell you all about it.
Besides that, we’re also going to show you how to register your car in the state.
This way, nothing falls through the cracks, so you don’t have to face hassle penalties.
So are you ready to learn about Nebraska vehicle laws?
Vehicle Laws in Nebraska
Here is a list of the vehicle laws in Nebraska:
- Vehicle registration
- Financial responsibility (auto insurance)
- Window tints
- Children and pets
- Required equipment
Let’s take a close look at each of these.
Nebraska requires all vehicle owners to register their vehicles with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
If you recently purchased your car, you must register it within 30 days. The same timeline applies if you recently transferred to Nebraska and already have a vehicle registered in a different state.
Financial Responsibility (Auto Insurance)
In Nebraska, it’s mandatory to have auto insurance. In fact, you won’t be able to register your vehicle without proof of financial responsibility.
Now, according to the law, there is a minimum coverage that you must have. These are:
- $25,000 for bodily injuries per person
- $50,000 for bodily injuries per accident
- $25,000 for property damage
- $25,000 for uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person
- $50,000 for uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage per accident
Remember that these are just the minimum car insurance requirements, so you always have the option to increase these limits.
You can also purchase additional coverage, such as comprehensive and collision insurance. With this, you’re assured of increased protection when on the road.
Some drivers prefer to have their windows tinted. It gives them more privacy and can help preserve the car’s interior.
If you plan on installing your own window tints, you must comply with the allowable darkness and reflection levels. This will depend on your vehicle.
The table below gives you the details.
|SUVs and Vans
|Tint Darkness for Windshield
|Non-reflective tint is allowed above the manufacturer’s AS-1 line.
|Tint Darkness for Front Side Windows
|Must allow more than 35% of light in.
|Tint Darkness for Back Side and Rear Windows
|Must allow more than 20% of light in.
|Any level of darkness
|Tint Reflection for Front and Back Side Windows
|Must not be more than 35% reflective.
Children and Pets
In Nebraska, it is illegal to leave a child under 6 years old or a pet unattended inside a vehicle.
The temperature inside your car can quickly rise — as much as 20 degrees in 10 minutes. Combine that with the fact that children’s and pets’ bodies heat up faster, possible vehicular heatstroke might occur.
In 2021, there were 23 recorded deaths. This year’s number is higher at 29 so far.
Your vehicle must have the following equipment installed:
- Headlights and tail lights
- Brake lights and turn signals
- Windshield wipers
- Seat belts
- Brakes (service and parking)
- Safety glass in all windows
- 2/32” tread on all pneumatic tires
Vehicle Penalties in Nebraska
Complying with Nebraska’s vehicle laws is essential because you may face extensive (and expensive) penalties if you don’t.
Here are the penalties that you will face:
- Driving an unregistered vehicle: A class III misdemeanor
- Failing to present proof of insurance: License suspension (until you do so) and a $50 reinstatement fee
- Driving uninsured: License, registration, and license plates suspension (until you can present proof of insurance) with a $50 reinstatement fee.
- Using illegal tint: Up to $100 in fines
- Having an unattended child (six or younger) or pet in a car: Ranges from a Class I misdemeanor to a Class IB felony, depending on the situation.
How to Register A Vehicle in Nebraska
Okay, so now that you understand the Nebraska vehicle laws, let’s move on to how you can register your vehicle in the state.
The registration process is slightly different for newly purchased vehicles and those brought in from out of state.
We covered both scenarios, just in case.
How to Register a Newly Purchased Vehicle in Nebraska
Remember, if you purchased a vehicle in Nebraska, you have 30 days to complete the registration process.
Here’s how to do it:
- Decide where you want to register it. You can complete the process in person or by mail (if it’s your first time).
- Pay for the excise tax and associated fees at your County Treasurer’s office. You can use the DMV’s online Motor Vehicle Tax Estimator to determine how much you’ll spend.
- Prepare the following documents:
- Proof of payment for excise tax
- Proof of insurance (you must show the original)
- Lease agreement (if applicable)
- Bring and submit everything to the County Treasurer’s office.
NOTE: If you register your vehicle by mail, send everything to your County Treasurer’s office’s address.
How to Register an Out-of-State Vehicle in Nebraska
You have 30 days after you become a Nebraska resident to get a Certificate of Title and register your vehicle.
The registration process is the same as that for a newly purchased vehicle. However, before you can do that, you need to get a title first.
Here are all the steps you must take:
- Have the County Sheriff inspect your vehicle for a $10 fee.
- Gather the following documents:
- Proof of Ownership. Click here to see the documents you can use.
- An Application for Certificate of Title.
- A Bill of Sale. You can also use a Nebraska Department of Revenue Form 6 (Nebraska Sales/Use Tax and Tire Fee Statement for Motor Vehicle And Trailer Sales). However, you cannot download it online. It’s only available at the DOR or your County Treasurer’s office.
- Inspection Certificate
- Bring everything to your County Treasurer and pay the $10 title fee.
- After receiving your Certificate of Title, go to the County Motor Vehicle Office in your area and present the following:
- Your current registration certificate from your previous state
- A copy of the lease agreement if you’re leasing your vehicle
- Original or electronic proof of insurance
- Your Certificate of Title
- Pay the necessary taxes and fees.
NOTE: You can estimate the total cost beforehand using the DMV’s Motor Vehicle Tax Estimator.
The Wrap Up
And there you have it — everything there is to know about Nebraska vehicle laws.
Now you know what you can and can’t do. Plus, you know all the steps on how to register your vehicle.
If you don’t want to face the penalties, then make sure to comply with all these laws.
Be a responsible driver!