Nebraska Revised Statute 60-1430.02

Chapter 60

60-1430.02.

Franchise termination, cancellation, or noncontinuation; termination, elimination, or cessation of line-make; payments required; mitigate damages.

(1) Upon the termination, cancellation, or noncontinuation of a franchise by the franchisor or franchisee pursuant to the Motor Vehicle Industry Regulation Act, the franchisor shall pay the franchisee:

(a) The dealer cost, plus any charges made by the franchisor for distribution, delivery, and taxes, less all allowances paid or credited to the franchisee by the franchisor, of unused, undamaged, and unsold motor vehicles in the franchisee's inventory acquired from the franchisor or another franchisee of the same line and make within the previous twelve months;

(b) The dealer cost, less all allowances paid or credited to the franchisee by the franchisor, for all unused, undamaged, and unsold supplies, parts, and accessories in original packaging, except that (i) in the case of sheet metal, a comparable substitute for original packaging may be used if such supply, part, or accessory is offered for sale by the franchisor and was acquired from the franchisor or the predecessor franchisee as a part of the franchisee's initial inventory and (ii) in the case of a motorcycle franchise, the payment for such supplies, parts, and accessories shall be based upon the currently published dealer cost for all unused, undamaged, and unsold supplies, parts, and accessories currently offered for sale by the franchisor and originally acquired from the franchisor or the predecessor franchisee as a part of the franchisee's initial inventory, and all such supplies, parts, and accessories shall be currently identifiable and labeled and in the original packaging or a comparable substitute for the original packaging;

(c) The fair market value of each undamaged sign owned by the franchisee which bears a common name, trade name, or trademark of the franchisor if acquisition of such sign was recommended or required by the franchisor;

(d) The fair market value of all special tools, equipment, and furnishings acquired from the franchisor or sources approved by the franchisor which were recommended and required by the franchisor and are in good and usable condition except for reasonable wear and tear; and

(e) The cost of transporting, handling, packing, and loading motor vehicles, supplies, parts, accessories, signs, special tools, equipment, and furnishings.

(2) The franchisor shall pay the franchisee the amounts specified in subsection (1) of this section within ninety days after the tender of the property if the franchisee has clear title to the property and is in a position to convey that title to the franchisor. This section shall not apply to a termination or noncontinuation of a franchise that is implemented as a result of the sale of the assets or stock of the franchisee.

(3)(a) If the termination, cancellation, or nonrenewal of a franchise is the result of the termination, elimination, or cessation of a line-make by the manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch, then, in addition to the payments to the franchisee pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, the manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch shall be liable to the franchisee for an amount at least equivalent to the fair market value of the franchise for the line-make, which shall be the greater of that value determined as of (i) the date the franchisor announces the action that results in termination, cancellation, or nonrenewal of the line-make or (ii) the date the action that resulted in termination, cancellation, or nonrenewal of the line-make first became general knowledge. In determining the fair market value of a franchise for a line-make, if the line-make is not the only line-make for which the franchisee holds a franchise in the dealership facilities, the franchisee shall also be entitled to compensation for the contribution of the line-make to payment of the rent or to covering obligations for the fair rental value of the franchise facilities for the period set forth in subdivision (b) of this subsection. Fair market value of the franchise for the line-make shall only include the goodwill value of the franchise for that line-make in the franchisee's community.

(b) If the line-make is the only line-make for which the franchisee holds a franchise, the manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch shall also pay assistance with respect to the franchise facilities leased or owned by the franchisee as follows:

(i) The manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch shall pay the franchisee a sum equivalent to the rent for the unexpired term of the lease or two years' rent, whichever is less; or

(ii) If the franchisee owns the franchise facilities, the manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch shall pay the franchisee a sum equivalent to the reasonable rental value of the franchise facilities for two years.

(c) To be entitled to franchise facilities assistance from the manufacturer, distributor, or factory branch, the franchisee shall have the obligation to mitigate damages by listing the franchise facilities for lease or sublease with a licensed real estate agent within thirty days after the effective date of the termination of the franchise and by reasonably cooperating with the real estate agent in the performance of the agent's duties and responsibilities. If the franchisee is able to lease or sublease the franchise facilities on terms that are consistent with local zoning requirements to preserve the right to sell motor vehicles from the franchise facilities and the terms of the franchisee's lease, the franchisee shall be obligated to pay the manufacturer the net revenue received from such mitigation, but only following receipt of franchise facilities assistance payments pursuant to subdivision (3)(b) of this section and only up to the total amount of franchise facilities assistance payments that the franchisee has received.

(d) This subsection does not apply to the termination of a line-make by a franchisor of recreational vehicles.

(4) This section shall not relieve a franchisee from any other obligation to mitigate damages upon termination, cancellation, or noncontinuation of the franchise.

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