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If you’re thinking about starting a business you’ve probably taken the initial step of putting together a basic or general plan. But like every endeavor, successful businesses develop and flourish from having thorough, proper business plans in place. So here are some key resources to help get you moving in the right direction:

Business Planning Tools:

  • Business Plan Outlines for Startup or Established Business (DED)
  • The Ultimate Guide to Business Plans (Ecommerce University by shopify.com)

Before Starting Your Business:

It may be necessary to register with the following agencies before operating your business in Nebraska:

Nebraska Secretary of State (402-471-4079)
The Secretary of State is responsible for registering trade names and business names. It is important to register with the Secretary of State if doing business as anything other than yourself.

Internal Revenue Service (1-800-829-4933)
The IRS issues Employer Identification Numbers, the unique number that identifies your business. Check with the IRS to see if you need an EIN or contact the IRS with questions.

Nebraska Department of Revenue (402-471-5823)
It is necessary to register with the Department of Revenue if you will have employees, engage in retail sales, rent or lease property, or provide any taxable services. In order to register, fill out the Form 20 on the Department of Revenue's website and submit it according to the form instructions. If you have any questions, review the Frequently Asked Questions section on NDOR's website or contact them.

Nebraska Department of Labor (402-471-9898)
The Department of Labor handles Unemployment Insurance, New Hire reporting, contractor registration, and other labor-related programs. If you are planning on hiring employees, please contact the Department of Labor to ensure you are properly covered.

Publicly Funded Business Counseling & Training:

  • Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE)
  • Small Business Administration (SBA)
  • Nebraska Business Development Center (NBDC)
  • Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP)
  • Invest Nebraska

Legal Services:

  • Nebraska Bar Association: Directory of Nebraska's Attorneys
  • Creighton Legal Clinic: Legal assistance for low-income small business
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Law: Entrepreneurship Legal Clinic

Accounting Services:

  • Directory of Nebraska's Licensed Certified Public Accountants

Other Resources:

  • Business USA - U.S. Government's primary business resource site
  • Tools and Programs for Veteran Entrepreneurs
  • Labor Market Information
  • Directory of Nebraska City and County Governments
  • Franchising: Guide to Buying a Franchise -- Introduction to Franchsing (SBA-FranNet) -- Franchise Survey Institute -- International Franchise Association

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Nebraska Department of Economic Development | Courtney Dentlinger, Department Director
301 Centennial Mall South | P.O. Box 94666 | Lincoln, NE 68509-4666
Phone (800) 426-6505 | Fax (402) 471-3778