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Georgia group fights to prevent lottery winners from claiming anonymously

Jan 29, 2018, 8:30 pm

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Georgia LotteryGeorgia Lottery: Georgia group fights to prevent lottery winners from claiming anonymouslyRating:

ATLANTA, Ga. — An open-government advocacy group has denounced a bipartisan proposal being considered by the Georgia Senate that would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous.

The Georgia First Amendment Foundation said in a statement that the proposed legislation raised transparency concerns. "Clearly, letting a government agency hand out millions of dollars to private citizens with no public record is a bad idea," the group's statement said.

Democratic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill, said in an interview Monday that protecting the identity of lottery winners is a matter of public safety. Henson said it could create a dangerous situation "if you win tens of millions of dollars and people know where you live."

Currently the Georgia Lottery Corporation is required to release certain information about winners including their name and hometown. The proposed bill would allow winners to remain anonymous only if they request it and pay up to 4 percent of their winnings to the lottery.

In January 2016, a man in Fitzgerald, Georgia, was murdered during a home invasion after winning a $434,272 lottery jackpot. Authorities said three masked men broke into Craigory Burch Jr.'s home, demanded money and fatally shot Burch. Seven people were later charged in connection with the murder. Three were convicted of murder and other charges last year and a fourth pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

A handful of states, including Delaware, Kansas and North Dakota, currently allow winners to remain anonymous.

The Kansas Lottery website reads: "Most states require the lottery to release the name and city of residence to anyone who asks. Kansas is one of a handful of states that does not have this requirement. If you win a prize in Kansas, you may request that your identity not be released publicly."

Maryland takes perhaps the most creative approach, allowing winners to use made up names and hide their faces behind oversized checks in official photos. A recent winner who won $1 million on a scratch off ticket is pictured on the Maryland Lottery website hiding their face behind a large check made out to "Montgomery County Millionaire."

Other states, including New Hampshire, allow for loopholes where winners can remain anonymous by claiming prizes through a trust.

AP

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42 comments. Last comment 4 years ago by basil19.
Page 1 of 3
elect82's avatar - Lottery-001.jpg
GA
United States
Member #101860
December 10, 2010
51 Posts
Offline

That young man being killed is a perfect example of why winnings should be anonymous! I personally saw how young he was and immediately thought his life was endangered,  and no more than a month later he was dead! Their only reasoning mentioned is, it is a bad idea, okay what else?

    play4shekels's avatar - redhead
    Clearwater, FL
    United States
    Member #68895
    January 1, 2009
    106 Posts
    Offline

    I don't even think there should be federal taxes on lottery winnings, so don't get me started on privacy. And you can't consider lottery winnings a "handout", you ignoramus! It is a return on investment. Do you want to publish everyone's name that gets food stamps? That's a handout.

      Avatar
      Northern Beaches
      Australia
      Member #187034
      January 9, 2018
      149 Posts
      Offline

      This is nuts! People should have the right to remain anonymous, if they want. We don't go around telling people how much we earn, so why should lottery prize money be any different?

      Here in Australia, winner hardly every choose publicity. The public accept that, because if they were in a similar position, they would also like to remain anonymous.   

      State Governments should pass laws giving lottery winners the right to anonymity. If they don't, the Donald should issue an Executive Order. That would solve the issue. Come on Donny!

        Avatar
        Kentucky
        United States
        Member #32651
        February 14, 2006
        9236 Posts
        Offline

        An open-government advocacy group has denounced a bipartisan proposal being considered by the Georgia Senate that would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous.

        The Georgia First Amendment Foundation said in a statement that the proposed legislation raised transparency concerns. "Clearly, letting a government agency hand out millions of dollars to private citizens with no public record is a bad idea," the group's statement said.

        Democratic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill, said in an interview Monday that protecting the identity of lottery winners is a matter of public safety. Henson said it could create a dangerous situation "if you win tens of millions of dollars and people know where you live."

        Currently the Georgia Lottery Corporation is required to release certain information about winners including their name and hometown. The proposed bill would allow winners to remain anonymous only if they request it and pay up to 4 percent of their winnings to the lottery.

        In January 2016, a man in Fitzgerald, Georgia, was murdered during a home invasion after winning a $434,272 lottery jackpot. Authorities said three masked men broke into Craigory Burch Jr.'s home, demanded money and fatally shot Burch. Seven people were later charged in connection with the murder. Three were convicted of murder and other charges last year and a fourth pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

        A handful of states, including Delaware, Kansas and North Dakota, currently allow winners to remain anonymous.

        The Kansas Lottery website reads: "Most states require the lottery to release the name and city of residence to anyone who asks. Kansas is one of a handful of states that does not have this requirement. If you win a prize in Kansas, you may request that your identity not be released publicly."

        Maryland takes perhaps the most creative approach, allowing winners to use made up names and hide their faces behind oversized checks in official photos. A recent winner who won $1 million on a scratch off ticket is pictured on the Maryland Lottery website hiding their face behind a large check made out to "Montgomery County Millionaire."

        Other states, including New Hampshire, allow for loopholes where winners can remain anonymous by claiming prizes through a trust.

        "Clearly, letting a government agency hand out millions of dollars to private citizens with no public record is a bad idea,"

        Maybe they should blame Eddie Tipton because one of his buddies or his NY lawyer trying to claim via trust could have easily collected based on this Georgia anonymity bill.

          hlamb's avatar - batman47
          sarasota,fl
          United States
          Member #116796
          September 19, 2011
          21 Posts
          Offline

          The thing that PISSES me off about all this is the state wants to dip further into a persons  winnings/pockets. There's already Federal and state taxes now they want to tax someone to remain anonymous, that ludicrous. GREED plain and simple.

          BNaked

            Avatar
            NY
            United States
            Member #23834
            October 16, 2005
            4446 Posts
            Offline

            "That young man being killed is a perfect example of why winnings should be anonymous!"

            If it's the guy I'm thinking of he's a perfect example of why you should be careful who you hang out with, or who you tell about winning. The majority of winners who have been victimized have been their own worst enemies, and were victimized by people who already knew them and found out about the lottery winnings right from the horse's mouth.

            "Eddie Tipton ... could have easily collected based on this Georgia anonymity bill."

            Haven't we been over this at least two or three times already? Anonymity doesn't mean that the winner gets a check made out to cash. The lottery knows who wins whether they release that information to the public or not.

              zephbe's avatar - animal butterfly.jpg
              South Carolina
              United States
              Member #77165
              July 15, 2009
              896 Posts
              Offline

              GA players are welcome to play in SC.  We are anonymous.

              Every champion was once a contender who refused to give up.-Rocky Balboa

              “Don’t let someone who gave up on their dreams talk you out of going after yours.” – Zig Ziglar

                music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
                Fresno, California
                United States
                Member #157849
                August 2, 2014
                3959 Posts
                Offline

                Here are the States that allow anonymity. This is my unofficial list.

                1. Delaware (DE)
                2. Kansas (KS)
                3. Maryland (MD)
                4. North Dakota (ND)
                5. Ohio (OH)
                6. Texas (TX)
                7. South Carolina (SC)

                 "We are all in this together!" 

                  hearsetrax's avatar - alien on_computer.jpg

                  United States
                  Member #52343
                  May 21, 2007
                  3387 Posts
                  Offline

                  DemoncRATatic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill,

                  'nuff said Roll Eyes

                    Avatar
                    Simpsonville
                    United States
                    Member #163182
                    January 22, 2015
                    2692 Posts
                    Offline

                    I don't even think there should be federal taxes on lottery winnings, so don't get me started on privacy. And you can't consider lottery winnings a "handout", you ignoramus! It is a return on investment. Do you want to publish everyone's name that gets food stamps? That's a handout.

                    Right on with that idea.  My thinking is folks will spend the winnings even more so IMO if they know the Feds aren't there to take their lion's share of it.  Here we have the largest tax code in any industrialized nation, that needs some serious trimming.

                    Am curious to transparency on the few states that do offer anonymity.  Best of my knowledge never heard of any problems. 

                      black$wan's avatar - animal swan.jpg
                      New Member

                      United States
                      Member #176230
                      July 27, 2016
                      5 Posts
                      Offline

                      DemoncRATatic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill,

                      'nuff said Roll Eyes

                      Although Sen. Henson sponsored this bill, he did so in support of a winner's anonymity. Are you saying you are against a winner claiming anonymously?

                      WINNING!!!

                        Slick Nick's avatar - RYc5Gcw
                        Rochester
                        United States
                        Member #103278
                        January 1, 2011
                        952 Posts
                        Offline

                        An open-government advocacy group has denounced a bipartisan proposal being considered by the Georgia Senate that would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous.

                        The Georgia First Amendment Foundation said in a statement that the proposed legislation raised transparency concerns. "Clearly, letting a government agency hand out millions of dollars to private citizens with no public record is a bad idea," the group's statement said.

                        Democratic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill, said in an interview Monday that protecting the identity of lottery winners is a matter of public safety. Henson said it could create a dangerous situation "if you win tens of millions of dollars and people know where you live."

                        Currently the Georgia Lottery Corporation is required to release certain information about winners including their name and hometown. The proposed bill would allow winners to remain anonymous only if they request it and pay up to 4 percent of their winnings to the lottery.

                        In January 2016, a man in Fitzgerald, Georgia, was murdered during a home invasion after winning a $434,272 lottery jackpot. Authorities said three masked men broke into Craigory Burch Jr.'s home, demanded money and fatally shot Burch. Seven people were later charged in connection with the murder. Three were convicted of murder and other charges last year and a fourth pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

                        A handful of states, including Delaware, Kansas and North Dakota, currently allow winners to remain anonymous.

                        The Kansas Lottery website reads: "Most states require the lottery to release the name and city of residence to anyone who asks. Kansas is one of a handful of states that does not have this requirement. If you win a prize in Kansas, you may request that your identity not be released publicly."

                        Maryland takes perhaps the most creative approach, allowing winners to use made up names and hide their faces behind oversized checks in official photos. A recent winner who won $1 million on a scratch off ticket is pictured on the Maryland Lottery website hiding their face behind a large check made out to "Montgomery County Millionaire."

                        Other states, including New Hampshire, allow for loopholes where winners can remain anonymous by claiming prizes through a trust.

                        In this day and age, "privacy" is imperative. As long as the winner pays the taxes, there should be no problems with keeping their names and faces out of the public eye..

                        Money is a terrible master, but a great servant...Smile

                          CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
                          Central TN
                          United States
                          Member #121187
                          January 4, 2012
                          5440 Posts
                          Offline

                          Here are the States that allow anonymity. This is my unofficial list.

                          1. Delaware (DE)
                          2. Kansas (KS)
                          3. Maryland (MD)
                          4. North Dakota (ND)
                          5. Ohio (OH)
                          6. Texas (TX)
                          7. South Carolina (SC)

                          Have to put an * by the State of Texas

                          As of  1 JAN 2018, the state of Texas allows you to claim anonymously at a $1 MILLION PRIZE and above with the cash option. The negative part is that if you claim and use the annuity option to collect, after 30 days they can release your name

                           

                          Still it's great they are looking out for us !!!

                          Integrity: There is just no substitute.

                            Avatar

                            United States
                            Member #181008
                            April 3, 2017
                            719 Posts
                            Offline

                            DemoncRATatic Sen. Steve Henson of Stone Mountain, who sponsored the bill,

                            'nuff said Roll Eyes

                            Yes sponsor could mean numerous things. The bill could have been written by someone else or by an interest group. Sen. Henson could just be leading the charge for the bill. Which means "money was donated" to him for his sponsorship.

                            You just gotta love politics.