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Millions in prize money never claimed by NJ lottery players

New Jersey LotteryNew Jersey Lottery: Millions in prize money never claimed by NJ lottery players
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While the New Jersey Lottery pays out well over $1.8 billion in prize money each year, players lose out on tens of millions more when they fail to claim their winnings.

In just the past eight years, about $317.7 million in payouts have been forfeited by players who fail to cash in their ticket within a year as lottery rules require.

While lottery players are more diligent in some years than others, there's been at least $33.9 million forfeited every year since 2008.

Winners have a year from the date of the drawing to have their ticket validated and claim their prize money. Instant game tickets or scratch-offs expire one year from the announced end of the game.

At least 30 percent of unclaimed prizes must be returned to the state as revenue, according to the New Jersey Lottery. Generally, the "vast majority" is sent back, though, the lottery says. Usually, "far less than 10 percent" is kept in reserve to fund special prizes and promotions.

In fiscal year 2015, the lottery returned about $960 million to the state. That's $5 million less than the year before. The majority — more than $543 million — went to New Jersey's colleges and universities and to fund scholarship programs. 

No Mega Millions or Powerball grand prize winners in New Jersey have ever failed to cash in their lucky ticket, according to a New Jersey Lottery spokeswoman.

NJ

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14 comments. Last comment 6 months ago by Groppo.
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Tony Numbers's avatar - Lottery-022.jpg
Bronx ny
United States
Member #158517
August 25, 2014
286 Posts
Offline
Posted: May 23, 2016, 9:27 am - IP Logged

Why play the lottery of you are lazy and or careless? If they didn't win the top prize they toss the tickets. Many smaller prizes go unclaimed. Mabye it's a good idea to go through the garbage, retrieve the "losing" tickets and cash them.

    Avatar
    Simpsonville
    United States
    Member #163189
    January 22, 2015
    669 Posts
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    Posted: May 23, 2016, 12:00 pm - IP Logged

    Why play the lottery of you are lazy and or careless? If they didn't win the top prize they toss the tickets. Many smaller prizes go unclaimed. Mabye it's a good idea to go through the garbage, retrieve the "losing" tickets and cash them.

    Love your last sentence.  A lady @ the gas station was playing scratchers and an ATM was right next to the lottery machine in Simpsonville, KY.  She played many, many tickets.  Went to the trash after she left and wouldn't you know I found a $200 winner.  Took it to another gas station to cash it in.  This guy said 'that's my ticket' as serious as he could be.  Said 'No, I found it in the trash @ Pilot'.

     

    OTH NJ has been on a roll for the big lotteries, $2M Powerball Saturday, $1M MM week before and of course the lucky eight from Trenton area.

      Think's avatar - lightbulb
      Marquette, MI
      United States
      Member #20541
      August 20, 2005
      705 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: May 23, 2016, 12:52 pm - IP Logged

      All states should have a Raffle on January 2nd to raffle off a pot of all their unclaimed prizes from the previous year but we know that will never happen.

        music*'s avatar - nw bookeep.jpg
        Happy California
        United States
        Member #157856
        August 2, 2014
        1514 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: May 23, 2016, 1:30 pm - IP Logged

        New Jersey !  Our fearless and courageous leader Todd Northrop's home. More New Jersey players need to read this post on www.lotterypost.com 

         Treat your tickets like cash.

         I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better. 

         Attributed to Joe E. Lewis and others

          TheGameGrl's avatar - character catafly.jpg
          A long and winding road
          United States
          Member #17084
          June 10, 2005
          4526 Posts
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          Posted: May 23, 2016, 4:53 pm - IP Logged

          All states should have a Raffle on January 2nd to raffle off a pot of all their unclaimed prizes from the previous year but we know that will never happen.

          Its been suggested before. Seems the States that carry lotteries  consider it Unclaimed goods in which they get to keep. 

          Technically its allocated money that is to go to claims, so yes, give it back to the players in a drawing. 

           

           

          This is New Jersey though...Meh.

          ~~Is it true, Is it kind,Is it necessary. ~~~

           Thanks be to the giving numbers: 1621,912,119 02014

            Groppo's avatar - cat anm.gif

            United States
            Member #162631
            January 7, 2015
            503 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: May 23, 2016, 5:08 pm - IP Logged

            All states should have a Raffle on January 2nd to raffle off a pot of all their unclaimed prizes from the previous year but we know that will never happen.

            .
            To our host TODD:


            What do you think of the above idea? Personally, I like it and think it makes good sense.
            But, I'm also afraid, as Mr./Ms. Think says: "
            It'll never happen."

            So, could you advise on how we get get a hold of the National lotto administration to consider this?

            If we flood them with emails, we could maybe get the ball rolling.

             

            Thank you,

            Mr. Groppo

            • Don't chase the numbers you play.
            • Play only numbers you've already played, plus however many random picks.
            • But, ALWAYS the regular numbers you play.  This will make you a winner, not a chaser.
                      (so far, though, I've yet to win any significant lotto prize)
              Avatar
              Simpsonville
              United States
              Member #163189
              January 22, 2015
              669 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: May 23, 2016, 7:13 pm - IP Logged

              .
              To our host TODD:


              What do you think of the above idea? Personally, I like it and think it makes good sense.
              But, I'm also afraid, as Mr./Ms. Think says: "
              It'll never happen."

              So, could you advise on how we get get a hold of the National lotto administration to consider this?

              If we flood them with emails, we could maybe get the ball rolling.

               

              Thank you,

              Mr. Groppo

              What National lotto administration?  Lord knows we don't need the feds in on any kind of lottery--unless ALL winnings were exempt from the IRS...ain't gonna happen.

                grwurston's avatar - Cute animals_Spider.jpg
                Winning makes me smile.
                bel air maryland
                United States
                Member #90251
                April 24, 2010
                4870 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: May 23, 2016, 8:37 pm - IP Logged

                Why play the lottery of you are lazy and or careless? If they didn't win the top prize they toss the tickets. Many smaller prizes go unclaimed. Mabye it's a good idea to go through the garbage, retrieve the "losing" tickets and cash them.

                I wonder how much of the forfeited money is by people that only play when the jackpots get really high. Otherwise, they never play at all and have no idea what the smaller prizes are. I can't imagine regular P3-P4 players not checking their tickets.

                Even when I KNOW I didn't have the winning number, I still check my tickets anyways. Why? Because I could have messed up filling out my play slips.

                "You can observe a lot just by watching." Yogi Berra, Hall of Fame baseball player.

                The numbers will tell you what numbers to play. Pay attention to the numbers.

                Don't just think outside the box, crush it.

                  noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                  Bay Area - California
                  United States
                  Member #136477
                  December 12, 2012
                  4108 Posts
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                  Posted: May 23, 2016, 8:42 pm - IP Logged

                  Perhaps NJ players have become accustomed to winning the Top prizes that  anything less is insulting & not worth collecting on.Kinda like in the Olympics, some athletes are so driven for Gold that when they receive Silver, that medal is off their necks before stepping off the podium. 

                  People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                    TheMeatman2005's avatar - lightening
                    Brooklyn, NY
                    United States
                    Member #169723
                    October 29, 2015
                    877 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: May 23, 2016, 11:34 pm - IP Logged

                    NJ probably isn't the only state that has un-cashed winning tickets.

                    The same thing must happen in all states that have a lottery.

                    The Meatman

                    “The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.” Will Rogers

                    Winning happens in a flash, Like A Bolt Of Lightning!  Patriot

                      noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                      Bay Area - California
                      United States
                      Member #136477
                      December 12, 2012
                      4108 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: May 24, 2016, 12:02 am - IP Logged

                      NJ probably isn't the only state that has un-cashed winning tickets.

                      The same thing must happen in all states that have a lottery.

                      Image result for true

                      People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                        TheMeatman2005's avatar - lightening
                        Brooklyn, NY
                        United States
                        Member #169723
                        October 29, 2015
                        877 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: May 24, 2016, 8:17 am - IP Logged

                        NJ probably isn't the only state that has un-cashed winning tickets.

                        The same thing must happen in all states that have a lottery.

                        So far, the 1/3 share ticket holder of the $1.5 billion jackpot from California has not come forward to claim their money.

                        Another jackpot ticket holder that hasn't come forward yet is for a Mega Millions jackpot of $165 million won on 1/8/2016

                        What is wrong with these people?

                        • Do they not need the money?
                        • Did they lose the ticket?

                        Treat your tickets like cash!

                        The Meatman

                        “The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.” Will Rogers

                        Winning happens in a flash, Like A Bolt Of Lightning!  Patriot

                          Avatar
                          Simpsonville
                          United States
                          Member #163189
                          January 22, 2015
                          669 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: May 24, 2016, 9:08 am - IP Logged

                          So far, the 1/3 share ticket holder of the $1.5 billion jackpot from California has not come forward to claim their money.

                          Another jackpot ticket holder that hasn't come forward yet is for a Mega Millions jackpot of $165 million won on 1/8/2016

                          What is wrong with these people?

                          • Do they not need the money?
                          • Did they lose the ticket?

                          Treat your tickets like cash!

                          Let the expiration come and go on the big ticket lottery wins and see how much the loser cries for 'their' money.  I agree 100% 'What is wrong with these people?'.

                            Groppo's avatar - cat anm.gif

                            United States
                            Member #162631
                            January 7, 2015
                            503 Posts
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                            Posted: May 24, 2016, 3:43 pm - IP Logged

                            Let the expiration come and go on the big ticket lottery wins and see how much the loser cries for 'their' money.  I agree 100% 'What is wrong with these people?'.

                            .

                            I vow to always treat ALL my lotto tickets, like cash.

                            I have usamega.com, and lotterypost available on internet. 

                            So, right away, almost everyone, on the next morning, can see if they were possibly the winner of prize 1 or 2.

                            No excuses. Check your doggone tickets. DON'T FORGET ABOUT THEM!

                            Don't just shove them down, into your pocket, like some old Wal-mart receipt.

                            I've also decided to keep my non-winners, in a stack, under the tv. I don't know why, but I do.

                            Every single one of those tickets has been double-checked.

                            • Don't chase the numbers you play.
                            • Play only numbers you've already played, plus however many random picks.
                            • But, ALWAYS the regular numbers you play.  This will make you a winner, not a chaser.
                                      (so far, though, I've yet to win any significant lotto prize)