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Virginia man claims $200M Mega Millions lottery jackpot

Mega MillionsMega Millions: Virginia man claims $200M Mega Millions lottery jackpot
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HARRISONBURG, Va. — They say good things come to those who wait.

Steve Williams of Shenandoah would probably agree. For nearly five months he waited, holding a Mega Millions ticket that he knew was worth $200 million. Finally, on March 12, 2010, he officially claimed his prize, becoming the second-largest winner in the Virginia Lottery's history.

Williams found out he was a mega-winner when he went to his favorite store, Valley's at 601 4th Street in Shenandoah, and made a pot of coffee. He always makes the morning coffee at the store, even though he doesn't work there.

"It's just to have something to do," he explained. "I'm a person who likes to be doing something."

That morning, the clerk pointed to a banner being hung outside the store, proclaiming that someone had bought a jackpot-winning ticket there for the previous night's Mega Millions drawing. So Mr. Williams pulled out his ticket for the October 16, 2009, drawing and let the clerk check it. Sure enough, the ticket matched all six numbers.

"I didn't need to jump up and down," he said. "She was doing enough for both of us!"

On March 12, he received his check from Virginia Lottery Executive Director Paula Otto in a presentation at James Madison University in Harrisonburg. Rather than take the full jackpot amount over 26 years, Mr. Williams chose to take the cash option of $125 million. The store received a $50,000 retailer bonus from the Virginia Lottery for selling the jackpot-winning ticket.

"This is the second-largest prize ever won by a Virginia Lottery player," said Ms. Otto. "We are delighted, not just for Mr. Williams' incredible prize, but also the millions of dollars the Virginia Lottery raises for K-12 public education in Virginia each year."

The winning numbers for that drawing were 10, 13, 18, 33, and 51, and the Mega Ball number was 43. He used the Easy Pick function, in which the computer randomly selected the numbers on his ticket.

Mr. Williams, who works as a carpenter, said he waited to claim his prize so he could assemble and meet with financial and legal advisors to plan for his future.

http://media.lpimg.com/2010031301.mp4

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46 comments. Last comment 7 years ago by iGlenn.
Page 1 of 4
konane's avatar - wallace
Atlanta, GA
United States
Member #1265
March 13, 2003
3333 Posts
Offline
Posted: March 13, 2010, 10:28 am - IP Logged

"Mr. Williams, who works as a carpenter, said he waited to claim his prize so he could assemble and meet with financial and legal advisors to plan for his future."

 

Wise man, congratulations to him! Party

Good luck to everyone!

    Avatar
    New Member
    Ohio
    United States
    Member #88121
    March 10, 2010
    7 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: March 13, 2010, 10:29 am - IP Logged

    If he assembled such a great team, shouldn't he have claimed anonymously? 

    And, I don't think I could wait five months to claim, could you guys?  I mean that more from a financial standpoint than not having the patience.  How do you pay this team of so-called experts?  Do they offer services knowing you will get the money?

      Avatar
      New Jersey
      United States
      Member #77101
      July 13, 2009
      7805 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: March 13, 2010, 1:10 pm - IP Logged

      Congratulations to Mr. Williams

      It's nice that he took the time to get his affairs

      in order before collecting his money

      Sounds like a very smart manThumbs Up


        ThatScaryChick's avatar - x1MqPuM
        Idaho
        United States
        Member #56506
        November 21, 2007
        6537 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: March 13, 2010, 1:34 pm - IP Logged

        It really does sound like Mr. Williams has his head on straight! Congrats to him on his big win! Smile

        "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

          Avatar

          United States
          Member #26330
          November 16, 2005
          330 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: March 13, 2010, 1:40 pm - IP Logged

          Is it possible to claim anonymously in VA??  Hopefully this will be me soon..  Except NO ONE will ever know it's me...LOL  .....If the $200 million Powerball Jackpot is won and claimed quietly  by a trust and you don't hear from me for a few weeks.....Just assume I'm livng it up in the BAHAMA'S!  Cheers

            dingo's avatar - lottery of-birth.jpg
            San Jose, California
            United States
            Member #42003
            June 26, 2006
            206 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: March 13, 2010, 1:44 pm - IP Logged

            He was so calm and waiting. It's $200 million. What a great virtue!

             

              Avatar
              California
              United States
              Member #80929
              October 7, 2009
              94 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: March 13, 2010, 3:13 pm - IP Logged

              Original Post by OhioLottery:

              "If he assembled such a great team, shouldn't he have claimed anonymously?"

              I was thinking the same thing.  Every state has different rules.  Some allow anonymous claims, others don't.

              "And, I don't think I could wait five months to claim, could you guys?"

              I could and would wait 5 months to claim or as long as possible.  There are many business affairs which a major winner must perform before he claims.  There are legal matters, accounting matters, personal matters and, most importantly, security matters.  One of the first things I would get is a passport which requires up to 6 weeks to receive from the State Department.  Wink  Winning $120 Million cash is a life changing experience which requires time to settle into.

              "I mean that more from a financial standpoint than not having thepatience.  How do you pay this team of so-called experts?  Do theyoffer services knowing you will get the money?"

              Lawyers and accountants will usually allow you to postpone payment, especially when they know they will be paid for certain, they are now working for a multi-millionaire who will provide future business, and for such a high profile client.

               

              Postpone
                Avatar
                Norfolk,VA
                United States
                Member #83225
                December 2, 2009
                757 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: March 13, 2010, 3:23 pm - IP Logged

                like i said in another post awhile back talking about jackpots going unclaimed....i thought this was going to be one of them... but congrats to him though..... but i sure wouldnt have waitied 5 months thats too close to the dead line....

                ''YOU CAN PAY FOR SCHOOL BUT, YOU CAN'T BUY CLASS''Thumbs Up

                  Avatar
                  New Member

                  United States
                  Member #88193
                  March 11, 2010
                  5 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: March 13, 2010, 3:58 pm - IP Logged

                  Regarding anonymity, this is from Virginia's lottery site:

                  Can I remain anonymous when I claim my lottery winnings?

                  No. Winners often ask if they can claim Lottery prizes anonymously. Virginia state law stipulates that a person must claim a prize; winners cannot claim a Virginia Lottery prize with a limited liability company or a trust, for example. In addition, the claimant’s name, hometown and prize are public record and are released to the media (usually for prizes $100,000 and up). Winners also agree to allow the Lottery use of their photo for reasonable publicity. News releases, often with photographs, are displayed on the Lottery`s Web site. For some jackpots and for some Scratcher prizes, game rules require the winner or winners to appear at a news conference held by the Lottery.

                  Virginia Lottery prizes are provided by the public (people who play the games); it is important to disclose where prizes go. All expenditures made by the Virginia Lottery must be made public. A winner`s private information (telephone number, street address, Social Security number, etc.) is protected by law and will not be released.

                    HaveABall's avatar - rocket

                    United States
                    Member #72448
                    March 18, 2009
                    1228 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: March 13, 2010, 5:45 pm - IP Logged

                    Steve Williams, "the Williamstir," making the coffee at the Valley's store!

                    Congratulations on your after taxes net $76.2M lump-sum option Mega Millions sole winning ticket jackpot prize Steve!!! Whoo Hoo!!!  Hope you greatly enjoy:  looking at it, pampering yourself with it, saving it, and spreading it around the world via spending!!!  And yes, if you want to continue making the coffee do it (but only at home, and only for yourself, now for liability purposes)!!!

                    It is possible that Steve waited 5 months before claiming so that he could form a C or S-Corporation (possibly with lawyers advising that it exist for over 4 months before claiming, so that no judge could come back later and state that the funds weren't allowed to be "received" by that young of a corporation).  Are their any corporation prep tax lawyers out there that could extrapulate further for we blog members concerning this probably valuable initial 'jackpot claiming' means for several percent tax savings secret vs. personal jackpot claiming [thanks in advance, we can each use the advice when we win our own U.S.A. national lottery jackpot prize]?

                    I did appreciate what one of our newest members wrote concerning why Steve's "advisers" didn't suggest safety precautions to their valuable(?) client.  Practicle ones, such as: that the lawyer actually attend the mandatory press conference, or advise that Steve if he is legally required to attend do so arriving to the location in a face and hair mask with lawyer to hold onto his arm the majority of the time; since the fullest mask would be difficult to see out of, AND advise Steve to only answer lottery personel and press questions via monotone "yes" or "no" answer (don't say if you have wife, children, anybody's age, if you're employed or unemployed, wealthy or broke, living in a house, apartment, or box).  After all, $76.2M is a lot of take home money, a "good advisory team" should realize that too much security and/or 2 hours of uncomfortable precautions is a misnomer!

                    US Flag Banana

                    Having several millions of dollars in my financial accounts means receiving several valuable services each day!

                    Disney

                      Avatar
                      California
                      United States
                      Member #80929
                      October 7, 2009
                      94 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: March 13, 2010, 6:49 pm - IP Logged

                      Is it possible to claim anonymously in VA??  Hopefully this will be me soon..  Except NO ONE will ever know it's me...LOL  .....If the $200 million Powerball Jackpot is won and claimed quietly  by a trust and you don't hear from me for a few weeks.....Just assume I'm livng it up in the BAHAMA'S!  Cheers

                      For anyone who is in California, after a Google search I finally found this information at their calottery website regarding anonymous claims of lotto jackpots:

                      "Can I be anonymous when I win?

                      California state law requires that the California State Lottery to release the following information: your name, and the name and location of the retailer where you bought your ticket. You may request no media coverage aside from that."

                       

                      I was hoping winners could use a blind trust, however this is not possible in California.  Although difficult with your name being published, it would not be impossible to maintain privacy.

                        rock_nc's avatar - Lottery-017.jpg
                        small town USA
                        United States
                        Member #2481
                        October 8, 2003
                        224 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: March 13, 2010, 7:58 pm - IP Logged

                        congrats to the man,now that nc can play Mega Millions,we[my group I'm IN]can PLAY IT TOO.Now PB is at 200m,I'm sure hope it's my lottery group that get's the win tonight......we be a happy bunch of folks here in NORTH CAROLINA.....Party

                          ca-dreamin*'s avatar - Lottery-065.jpg
                          Chicago
                          United States
                          Member #70678
                          February 8, 2009
                          889 Posts
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                          Posted: March 13, 2010, 9:00 pm - IP Logged

                          Congrats to Mr. Williams!

                          There is NO WAY I would wait 5 months and continue to do my job. Could you imagine knowing your gonna have all this money but in the meantime live your life as is?

                            Guest


                            Member #0
                            January 1, 2000
                            0 Posts
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                            Posted: March 13, 2010, 9:05 pm - IP Logged

                            May he enjoy his winnings in peace!