Nebraska Marijuana and Controlled Substances Tax
Nebraska has severe punishment for drug crimes. Drivers with out-of-state plates are frequently pulled over traveling through Nebraska on Interstate 80 for a variety of reasons. Law enforcement then looks for a way to search the car, whether that be through consent or probable cause. If their search turns up illegal drugs, you will be facing some sort of criminal drug charge(s). One charge that people often don’t even realize is associated with illegal drugs is the failure to pay the Nebraska Marijuana and Controlled Substances Tax, also known as the Drug Tax Stamp. The Drug Tax Stamp allows the state to punish individuals in possession of drugs even further.
What is the Drug Tax Stamp?
In 1991, in order to curb the sale of illegal drugs in Nebraska and punish individuals in possession of drugs, the state put the Drug Tax Stamp into effect. This tax requires anybody in possession of drugs in the state of Nebraska to purchase a stamp from the Nebraska Department of Revenue. The stamp is to be placed on the containers in which the drugs are in. According to Nebraska Legislature Revised Statute 77-4302.
“No dealer may possess marijuana or controlled substances upon which a tax is imposed by section 77-4303 unless the tax has been paid on the marijuana or controlled substance as evidenced by an official stamp, label, or other indicium.”
In essence, if you are in possession of drugs and have not purchased the correct stamp, you could be charged with a class IV felony. By adding this tax, law enforcement can gain further profit when charging somebody in possession of drugs.
Having the proper Drug Tax Stamp does not make the drug(s) legal. The stamp keeps law enforcement from giving you an additional Drug Tax Stamp charge. Nebraska Department of Revenue claims that individuals purchasing the tax need not provide their name or any identifying information. Information provided is said to be confidential.
Penalties for Not Paying
The penalty for not having an authorized Drug Tax Stamp from the Nebraska Department of Revenue is a Class IV felony. A Class IV felony is punishable by up to 5 years imprisonment and/or a $10,000 fine. Other penalties by the Nebraska Department of Revenue can include:
- a Drug Tax Notice of Deficiency Determination
- a penalty equal to the original drug tax
- a lien on the accused drugs
Paying the Tax
To owe the drug tax you must possess one or more of the following:
- 6+ ounces of marijuana
- 7+ grams of sold by weight controlled substances
- 10+ dosages of not sold by weight controlled substances
Once in possession of said substances, they must purchase the stamp from the Nebraska Department of Revenue. Stamps must be placed on each substance container. These stamps expire every six months and must be repurchased. The costs differ from substance to substance:
- $100 for every ounce or part of an ounce of Marijuana
- $150 for every gram or part of a gram of Controlled Substances (sold by weight)
- $500 for every 50-dosage or part of a 50-dosage of Controlled Substances (not sold by weight)
If you are convicted of possessing a controlled substance without a tax stamp, the Nebraska Department of Revenue can assess a “tax” against you in the amount of money described above. Once a tax is assessed, the state can then file a civil complaint to try and obtain a judgment. If a judgment is obtained, the Nebraska Department of Revenue can then execute on that judgment which can include seizure of property or garnishment of wages.
Drug Defense Lawyers
Drug charges are severe. Don’t let one ruin your career. Berry Law’s team of Nebraska drug attorneys have extensive experience in fighting drug charges. If you or somebody you know faces drug charges or drug stamp tax charges, call 402.466.8444 to schedule a consultation today.