Veterans Preference Under Nebraska State Law

Nebraska State Law has revised veterans’ preference for employment effective January 1, 2015. The purpose of this information is to describe eligibility requirements provided for in the law, and instructions for UNL hiring managers to use in verifying preference. The hiring unit is responsible to verify preference eligibility.

Consideration of Veterans for Vacancies

Nebraska Law requires consideration of veterans' preference for all posted staff and faculty vacancies, including temporary and on-call positions.

  • All postings for available positions shall state that the position is subject to veterans’ preference. The Applicant Home Page of PeopleAdmin states all positions opened at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln are subject to veterans’ preference. Vacancies not posted in PeopleAdmin require a similar veterans’ preference notice in their postings.
  • Specifically when two or more equally qualified candidates are being considered and one or more of these qualified candidates is a veteran under Nebraska Law, preference for hiring will be given to the qualifying veteran.
  • Veterans, disabled veterans and spouses of veterans with a 100% permanent disability must be notified that they have not been hired.

Veteran Applicants

Veteran applicants will request preference through their online application in PeopleAdmin, or on paper application. Their response will be found in the Personal Information Section under the question – For employment opportunities, do you wish to use the State of Nebraska Veteran’s Preference Law?

Affirmative Veteran Responses

Affirmative responses will indicate the applicant is claiming preference as a veteran, a disabled veteran or a spouse of a veteran with a 100% permanent disability rating. This preference may be verified at any time during the application process. Verification of preference is needed when two or more equally qualified candidates are being considered and one or more of these candidates has claimed veteran’s preference under Nebraska law.

Employment Preference

Preference shall be given to the qualifying veteran if two or more equally qualified candidates are being considered for the position.

It is the hiring unit’s responsibility to verify preference. Information provided by the veteran or spouse of the veteran should be kept confidential. Copies of documents veterans provide and Search Committee notes regarding determination of veteran’s preference should be filed with the Search Committee records. As a reminder, you may not rely on portions of the veteran’s military record which are not relevant to the qualification requirements of this position.

Verification of Preference

Use the information in this section when verifying veteran preference.

  1. VETERANS:
    • Definition of Veteran: Veteran is an individual who has served full-time duty with military pay and allowances in the armed forces of the United States, except for training or for determining physical fitness, and was discharged or otherwise separated with a characterization of honorable or general (under honorable conditions).
    • Required Documentation: Request copy of DD Form 214. You will be verifying character of service, purpose of service, and dates of service.
    • Character of Military Service: Look at the DD Form 214 to determine if discharge or release from military service is qualifying. “Character of Service” should indicate either “honorable conditions” or under a “general discharge under honorable conditions”.
    • Purpose of Military Service: Veterans who have served in the military only for training or for determining physical fitness are not considered veterans for veterans’ preference purposes. Look at “Reason for Separation” and “Type of Separation” to determine if military service is only for training
    • Definition of Full-time Duty: Full-time duty generally means duty during time of war or during a period recognized by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as qualifying for veteran’s benefits administered by the department. Duty between Jan 31, 1955 to Feb 28, 1961 must exceed 180 days unless that service resulted in service-connected or service-aggravated disability.
    • Dates of Service: Eligible dates of service for veterans’ preference under Nebraska state law.

    World War I

    April 6, 1917 – November 11, 1918

    World War II

    September 16, 1940 – July 25, 1947

    Post – World War II

    July 26, 1947 – June 26, 1950

    Korean Conflict

    June 27, 1950 – January 31, 1955

    Post – Korean War

    February 1, 1955 – August 4, 1964*

    *Duty between Jan 31, 1955 to February 28, 1961 must exceed 180 days unless that service resulted in service-connected or service-aggravated disability.

    Vietnam Era

    February 28, 1961 – May 7, 1975*

    *For veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period.

    August 5, 1964 – May 7, 1975 for veterans that did not serve in the Republic of Vietnam.

    Post-Vietnam War

    May 8, 1975 – September 7, 1980 *

    *Ending date for officers is October 16, 1981

    24-month Rule

    September 8, 1980 – August 1, 1990 *

    *Beginning date for officers is October 17, 1981

    Gulf War

    August 2, 1990 – through a future date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation

  2. DISABLED VETERANS:
    • Definition of Disabled Veteran: Disabled veteran is an individual who has served on active duty in the armed forces of the United States, has been discharged or otherwise separated with a characterization of honorable or general (under honorable conditions) therefrom, and has established the present existence of a service-connected disability or is receiving compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension because of a public statute administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or a military department.
    • Required Documentation: Request copy of DD Form 214. You will be verifying character of service and present existence of a service-connected disability.
    • Character of Military Service: Look at the DD Form 214 to determine if discharge or release from military service is qualifying. “Character of Service” should indicate either “honorable conditions” or under a “general discharge under honorable conditions”.
    • Verification of Disability: Disabled veterans do not require specific dates of service. Instead, you are looking for verification of existence of a service-connected disability or receipt of compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension because of a public statute administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or a military department.
  3. SPOUSE:
    • Definition of Spouse: Spouse of a veteran who has a 100% permanent disability as determined by the US Department of Affairs is eligible for veteran’s preference.
    • Required Documentation: Request the spouse provide the following documents for verification of eligibility.
      • DD Form 214 of the veteran (Verifying only the receipt of form, not the information included on the form.)
      • Veteran’s disability verification form from the US Department of Veterans Affairs demonstrating a 100% permanent disability rating
      • Proof of marriage to the veteran, i.e. a valid marriage license recognized by the State of Nebraska.

Veteran Not Hired Notification Required by Nebraska Law

Within 30 days after filling a position, veterans, disabled veterans, and spouses of veterans with a 100% permanent disability who applied for a position and were not hired are to be notified by regular mail, electronic mail, telephone call, or personal service that they have not been hired. Veterans must also be informed that they may contact the UNL Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance at 402-472-3417 for information regarding appeal procedures.

Include this veteran appeal procedures wording in notifications: “If you claimed veteran preference under Nebraska law for this vacancy, you may contact the UNL Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance at 402-472-3417 for information regarding appeal procedures.”

Units may choose to use PeopleAdmin system-generated emails to meet the law notice requirement to veterans that were not hired. Post the workflow state of these applicants to Not Hired (Send Email) at any time during the hiring process. The emails will then be sent when you close the search and move the posting to Filled. If you choose, you may also send other notification via email or other means. It is very important to close out a search within 30 days after a successful candidate has been chosen to be compliant with the law.

Questions

Nebraska Veterans Preference Law is available in Sections 48-225 thru Section 48-231 of Nebraska Revised Statues Chapter 48.

If you have any questions, please contact the UNL Employment Office at 402-472-3101 or email: unljobs@unl.edu.