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What all lottery players should know if they win nearly $1B Mega Millions, Powerball jackpots

Jan 5, 2018, 8:49 am

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Mega Millions / PowerballMega Millions / Powerball: What all lottery players should know if they win nearly $1B Mega Millions, Powerball jackpotsRating:

Includes video report

One lucky winner could be hours away from taking home one of the largest jackpots in Mega Millions or Powerball history.

In more than two months without a winner, both the Mega Millions and Powerball jackpots have rolled over to an estimated combined total of nearly $1 billion.

The Mega Millions jackpot stands at $445 million, with a $277 million lump-sum option. The Powerball jackpot has reached $550 million, which is a $347.9 million lump-sum payout.

If anyone hits both jackpots the haul would be a whopping $995 million, the second-biggest payout in lotto history.

The best thing a winner can do is stay anonymous, financial adviser and CPA Kurt Panouses, who helped a Florida couple that won a portion of the largest jackpot ever, said.

"The initial concern of the ticket is probably the most important part of the planning aspect," Panouses said. "What the individual should do is protect the ticket, keep it safe, put it in a safe place, but do not sign the back of the ticket."

"Whoever signs the back of the ticket is the individual that has to claim the ticket and the proceeds," Panouses explained.

Panouses also suggested making a copy of the ticket and getting a tax professional and an attorney to help manage the funds and offer investment advice.

"The tax rate is the highest rate it's been at. In 2018 it's going to be 2.6 percent lower than in 2017. Again, if you're talking about $300 million, that could be seven to eight million dollars of finances that someone could actually have in their pocket by claiming it in 2018," he said of the payout under the new tax law.

A group of 20 co-workers from the North American Stamping Group who won a $420.9 million Powerball jackpot in 2016 split the winnings.

One of the women from the group has used the money to pay it forward to people in need, including her own family, she said.

"To see my family in better shape, it's a blessing," Amy O'Neal said.

If there is a winner, he or she could choose an annuity to receive 30 payments over 29 years or take a lump sum.

Experts suggest that players use the full range of numbers available and not limit their chances by playing just numbers such as birthdays because months have no more than 31 days and Powerball numbers go up to 69.

The biggest Powerball jackpot on record was a $1.586 billion prize in January 2016. People in California, Florida and Tennessee split the prize.

The largest Mega Millions jackpot in history was $656 million. Three winners from Kansas, Illinois and Maryland shared that record prize in March 2012.

Powerball is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Mega Millions is played in all the same jurisdictions except Puerto Rico.

The next Mega Millions drawing is tonight at 11 p.m. ET. The next Powerball drawing is Saturday at 10:59 p.m. ET.

VIDEO: Watch the report

mxA-xfpFc7ILotto winners share tips as Powerball, Mega Millions reach nearly $1BOne lucky winner could be hours away from taking home one of the largest jackpots in Mega Millions or Powerball history.PT02M40Shttps://img.youtube.com/vi/mxA-xfpFc7I/hqdefault.jpghttps://youtu.be/mxA-xfpFc7I2018-01-05T08:46:00-05:00

ABC News

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35 comments. Last comment 3 years ago by benmas.
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Simpsonville
United States
Member #163184
January 22, 2015
2228 Posts
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Posted: January 5, 2018, 8:55 am - IP Logged

Seriously all I want is just the Megaplier or Powerplay secondary prize; that's more than enough.

    Raven62's avatar - binary
    25
    New Jersey
    United States
    Member #17842
    June 28, 2005
    127337 Posts
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    Posted: January 5, 2018, 9:08 am - IP Logged

    You need Supersized Luck just to Win One of Them: God knows how much Luck you would need to Win Both of Them!

    A mind once stretched by a new idea never returns to its original dimensions!

    Catch-22: A dilemma or difficult circumstance from which there is no escape because of mutually conflicting or dependent conditions.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges: When the republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous.

      CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
      Central TN
      United States
      Member #121189
      January 4, 2012
      4660 Posts
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      Posted: January 5, 2018, 9:33 am - IP Logged

      You need Supersized Luck just to Win One of Them: God knows how much Luck you would need to Win Both of Them!

      Amen Raven...........  1 jackpot would be an astronomical miracle but 2 ? Thud Holy Smoly... Probably have to give the entire amount away of the 2nd jackpot.. Too much money not needed for my remaining existence. Yes Nod

      Here's hoping one of us wins tonight or tomorrow night  Thumbs Up

      Integrity: There is just no substitute.

        CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
        Central TN
        United States
        Member #121189
        January 4, 2012
        4660 Posts
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        Posted: January 5, 2018, 9:33 am - IP Logged

        Seriously all I want is just the Megaplier or Powerplay secondary prize; that's more than enough.

        Thumbs Up

        Integrity: There is just no substitute.


          United States
          Member #180290
          February 28, 2017
          201 Posts
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          Posted: January 5, 2018, 9:47 am - IP Logged

          You need Supersized Luck just to Win One of Them: God knows how much Luck you would need to Win Both of Them!

          1 in 88,412,922,115,818,300

          1 in 88 Quadrillion 

          You have better chance getting bit by a shark in Kansas.

          You have a better chance at sleeping with the Queen of England, past and present.

           

          Any others?

            music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
            Fresno, California
            United States
            Member #157851
            August 2, 2014
            3918 Posts
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            Posted: January 5, 2018, 9:53 am - IP Logged

            "Do not sign your ticket."  ??? said the lawyer in the video. Good Luck claiming it if you lose it. Some have misplaced their ticket or forgotten where they hid it. If it is lost and a stranger finds it you might be out of luck.

             The lawyer might have been thinking that the winner should leave enough space above your signature for the name of your trust. 

             Of course, all States are different and have different rules. 

            Dance

             "We are all in this together!" 


              United States
              Member #180290
              February 28, 2017
              201 Posts
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              Posted: January 5, 2018, 10:08 am - IP Logged

              "Do not sign your ticket."  ??? said the lawyer in the video. Good Luck claiming it if you lose it. Some have misplaced their ticket or forgotten where they hid it. If it is lost and a stranger finds it you might be out of luck.

               The lawyer might have been thinking that the winner should leave enough space above your signature for the name of your trust. 

               Of course, all States are different and have different rules. 

              Dance

              Is anyone going to seriously lose the ticket?  Yes, people have lost winning tickets before, but that is usually a week or so after the drawing they hear someone locally won, so they go digging for it.  For this amount I am sure everyone will check the next morning.

               

              The lottery will pay the name on the line, if it is your name, it's not anonymous (except for states that allow it).

              Scan/copy/photo it, put it in a safety deposit box.  Give the copy to the lawyer, if he needs to see it before cash in day, take him to the bank.

              With the scan/copy/photo (along with security video form store), if your house burns down or someone steals it, you can fight it in court.

                fwlawrence's avatar - Yavill
                Austin
                United States
                Member #9378
                December 6, 2004
                221 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: January 5, 2018, 10:19 am - IP Logged

                Don't sign the back of your ticket? Sounds like a crook who wants to sign his name!

                  gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
                  ONEONTA,NEW YORK
                  United States
                  Member #30515
                  January 17, 2006
                  447 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: January 5, 2018, 10:57 am - IP Logged

                  OK, THE VIDEO GAVE ME THE Answer THAT I WAS LOOKING FOR .THE ODDS OF WINNING BOTH JACKPOTS . 1 in 88 QUADRILLION..PartyPartyUS FlagPartyPartyTHIS IS HUGE

                    gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
                    ONEONTA,NEW YORK
                    United States
                    Member #30515
                    January 17, 2006
                    447 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: January 5, 2018, 10:58 am - IP Logged

                    Don't sign the back of your ticket? Sounds like a crook who wants to sign his name!

                    I Agree!  PartyUS FlagParty

                      golfer1960's avatar - Lottery-003.jpg
                      Eatontown, NJ
                      United States
                      Member #119666
                      November 29, 2011
                      849 Posts
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                      Posted: January 5, 2018, 11:39 am - IP Logged
                      See the source image
                      2018 Cadillac XT5
                        golfer1960's avatar - Lottery-003.jpg
                        Eatontown, NJ
                        United States
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                        November 29, 2011
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                        Posted: January 5, 2018, 11:41 am - IP Logged
                        See the source image
                        2018 Cadillac CT6
                          golfer1960's avatar - Lottery-003.jpg
                          Eatontown, NJ
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                          Posted: January 5, 2018, 11:44 am - IP Logged
                          See the source image
                          TPC SAWGRASS, 17TH HOLE
                            golfer1960's avatar - Lottery-003.jpg
                            Eatontown, NJ
                            United States
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                            November 29, 2011
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                            Posted: January 5, 2018, 11:49 am - IP Logged

                            COMFY CRAFTSMAN