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Nebraska State Lotteries Laws

Official state lotteries are used by the majority of U.S. states to help raise state revenue, often for a specific use. Lotteries include different games of chance (no skill involved, only luck) where contestants either play "scratch-off" tickets for instant prizes or choose a pattern of numbers for a weekly drawing. Prizes can range from a free ticket to tens of millions of dollars, although games with the biggest prizes also have the lowest odds of winning. Lotteries are controversial for moral and ethical reasons, including concerns that they prey on the poor, but more states have embraced the practice as a way to raise needed revenue without raising taxes.

The Basics of Nebraska State Lottery Laws

Proceeds from the Nebraska Lottery not used for prizes and operational costs are distributed among four different funds, including two for education. Rules for playing the lottery and claiming prizes are similar to those in other states, with restrictions on purchases by minors (19 in Nebraska) and a ban on telephone sales. Nebraska's state lottery started in 1993 following voter approval of a constitutional amendment authorizing the creation of a lottery.

The following chart provides additional details about state lottery laws in Nebraska.

Code Section 9-801, et seq.
Distribution of Lottery Revenue 40% prizes, 25% divided among Education Innovation Fund, Environmental Trust Fund, Compulsive Gambler's Assistance Fund, Nebraska Scholarship Fund
Additional Purpose of Lottery Education Fund to encourage and fund high performance learning innovations, pilot projects, and model programs
Lottery Prize Subject to Garnishment On prizes over $500, any outstanding state tax liability or child or spousal support
Time Limit to Claim Prize/Disposition Period of time set by regulation/used at discretion of tax commissioner for purposes set out in lottery statutes
Prohibited Related Activities Sale to person under 19 years of age; at price other than proscribed; unauthorized sale; alter ticket; no phone; mail or credit sales

Note: State laws are always subject to change at any time, most often through the enactment of newly signed legislation but sometimes through higher court decisions and other means. You may want to contact a Nebraska gaming law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

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