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Update: Every US state lottery's COVID-19 response

Apr 6, 2020, 9:06 am

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By Todd Northrop and Kate Northrop

While life has been upended and millions of Americans are staying home due to the national COVID-19 response, state lotteries continue to operate every day — selling tickets, drawing numbers, and awarding prizes.

Two weeks ago Lottery Post surveyed every state lottery to determine what modified procedures have been put in place by each lottery to protect players and those who run the lottery from spreading the coronavirus.

The responses we saw varied from logically cautious to business as usual, but the most troubling aspect was that several state lotteries did not provide any guidance to lottery players at all. This lack of guidance could lead to confusion and potential unnecessary exposure to players who might not be aware they should be claiming prizes by mail.

This weekend Lottery Post revisited the websites of every state lottery to find out if all the states have added COVID-19 responses, and what changes have been made at states that had already published a response.

What we found was encouraging, as almost all state lotteries now have written guidance available on their websites to keep players informed. Only North Dakota did not provide any guidance on their website at all.

Across the board, lotteries are encouraging players to claim prizes by mail. Although states allow prizes of less than $600 to be claimed at lottery retailers, it is important for players to know they have the option to claim those prizes by mail. That means if you're holding on to a $2 winning lottery ticket, you don't need to keep that ticket laying around while you hunker down at home. You can use the instructions on your lottery's website to have your lottery mail a check to your home.

Lottery Post has included a summary of each state's COVID-19 response, but players are encouraged to click the links provided to see more detail at the official state lottery websites.

Most importantly, during this unprecedented time, stay safe by continuing to follow the guidelines in 30 Days to Slow the Spread.

Every state lottery's COVID-19 response

* States marked with an asterisk ("*") have a COVID-19 response that has been added or changed since Lottery Post's last survey two weeks ago.

Arizona*

Submit winning tickets by mail or visit the Phoenix or Tuscon offices by appointment only. There are also dropboxes set up outside the Phoenix and Tuscon locations.

How to claim prizes

Arkansas

Claim centers closed to walk-in traffic, prizes under $25,000 must be claimed by mail. Prizes $25,000 or more must be claimed in person by appointment. To make an appointment, email Claim Center Manager Sandra Cummings at sandra.cummings@arkansas.gov. The lottery's phone lines are currently down.

How to claim prizes

California*

All lottery offices are closed, but prizes can be claimed by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Colorado

Claim centers closed through April 18.

How to claim prizes

Connecticut

The CT Lottery has extended its claims period by 30 days for all tickets originally due to expire from March 16 - April 14, 2020. Prizes $5,000 - $49,999 must be claimed by mail. Prizes $50,000 and above must be made in-person at the CT Lottery's Rocky Hill headquarters, and by appointment only. To make an appointment, claimants should call (860) 713-2679.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Delaware

The Division of Revenue Redemption Centers in Wilmington, Dover, and Georgetown are currently unable to cash lottery tickets. Players should mail prize claims.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Florida

All claim deadlines have been extended by 90 days, giving players the option to hold on to winning tickets and wait to claim any prizes until Lottery offices reopen to the public. The Florida Lottery headquarters and all district offices are closed to the public. All Lottery Draw game drawings are being conducted as scheduled, and winner claims and prize payments will continue to be processed via mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Georgia*

The claim centers at Georgia Lottery headquarters and district offices are closed. Winners can mail all prize claims to: Georgia Lottery Corporation, P.O. Box 56966, Atlanta, GA 30343. The Georgia Lottery will extend the prize claim deadline for tickets with a claim expiration date between March 18, 2020, and the date Georgia Lottery headquarters and district office claim centers re-open.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Idaho*

The Boise office is closed to the public. The Lottery will consider extending the claiming periods for all winning tickets impacted by closures. Players are encouraged to hold on to tickets valued over $600 until offices re-open or mail prize-winning tickets to the Lottery Office. A dedicated mail drop box is also set up at the Boise office between 9am and 4pm daily.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Illinois

All Lottery claim centers are now closed until further notice, but prizes can be claimed via mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Indiana*

Prizes $100,000 or greater must be claimed in person by appointment (call 1-800-955-6886 to schedule an appointment); all other prizes must be claimed by mail. The deadline for claiming winning lottery tickets has been extended 60 days beyond the 180 days allowed by statute.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Iowa

Lottery offices are closed to the public. Prizes must be claimed by mail or by dropoff to a secure dropbox at Lottery headquarters in Clive.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Kansas*

The Kansas Lottery re-opened Monday, April 6, but all state office buildings remain closed to the public until at least April 19. Lottery staff will process mail-in claim tickets in the order they are received. It is unknown at this time when in-person claims will resume. For tickets that may expire March 23 through April 6, an extension will be granted on a case-by-case basis. Players must contact lottery.info@kslottery.net if this applies to your prize.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Kentucky*

The Lexington claims center is closed, but the Louisville claims center remains open to only handle claims of $5,000 or more by appointment only. To sign up for a time slot, call 800-937-8946 during regular business hours and select option 3. You can claim a prize of up to $99,999 by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Louisiana*

The Baton Rouge headquarters and all regional prize payment offices are closed through the end of April. Players should hold on to winning tickets of more than $600 until prize payment offices resume operations with reassurance that prize claim deadlines occurring during the office closure, which began March 24, will be extended for an additional 90 days. Winning tickets can also be claimed through the mail but the lottery says they are not responsible for tickets lost in transit.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Maine*

The Lottery office is closed to the public. Winning tickets of $600 or more must be mailed to the Lottery for payment. All winners of $600 or more must complete a Winners Claim Form available at mainelottery.com.

How to claim prizes

Maryland*

The Lottery Office in Baltimore is closed. Players can mail in prize claims. Prize deadlines have been extended: If you have a winning ticket that expires during Maryland's current state of emergency, the Lottery will pay the prize if you submit the ticket within 30 days after the coronavirus state of emergency is terminated. The state of emergency began on March 5, 2020.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Massachu­setts*

All Lottery claims centers are closed to the public through April 13.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Michigan

Lottery prizes of up to $600 may be claimed at retailers and prizes of $601 to $50,000 may be claimed via U.S. mail. Prize claims of $50,001 will continue to be processed by appointment.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Minnesota*

Regional offices are closed. The Roseville headquarters is available for claiming prizes of above $599. Prizes up to and including $50,000 should be claimed by mail.

How to claim prizes

Mississippi

Prizes $100,000 or greater must be claimed by appointment at lottery headquarters; all other prizes must be claimed by mail (but the lottery's onerous documentation requirements make it somewhat difficult).

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Missouri*

All prizes must be claimed by mail until lottery offices re-open at an unspecified later date.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Montana*

The Lottery office is closed to the public. All claims will be handled exclusively by mail until further notice.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Nebraska

Regional Lottery Claim Centers in Grand Island, Norfolk, North Platte, and Scottsbluff are closed to the public until further notice. Nebraska Lottery headquarters in Lincoln and the Omaha Claim Center remain open, but office hours may be adjusted as more information becomes available. Players are encouraged to claim prizes up to $19,999 by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

New Hampshire

Prizes can be claimed at the sales office as usual.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

New Jersey*

The New Jersey Lottery's front office is temporarily closed for the collection of walk-in claims through at least April 17. The expiration date for all claims set to expire between March 19, 2020, and April 17, 2020 will now be extended for an additional 30 days from the date of expiration. Players can mail in prize claims.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

New Mexico*

The Lottery's Claim Center is closed until further notice. Winning tickets up to $99,999 may be claimed via mail.

How to claim prizes

New York

Lottery regional customer service and claim centers are closed to the public, but prizes can be claimed through the mail. A claim form is linked directly on the lottery's home page.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

North Carolina*

All Lottery Claim Centers are closed to the public until further notice. The Lottery recommends signing and keeping winning tickets in a safe place until offices re-open. Prize claims valued $600 to $99,999 can be mailed in. Prizes $100,000 and bigger must be claimed in person at lottery headquarters in Raleigh when offices re-open.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

North Dakota

No COVID-19 response on website

How to claim prizes (Lottery Post recommends claiming prizes by mail)

Ohio

All regional offices are closed and winners can submit claims by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Oklahoma*

The Lottery Claim Center in Oklahoma City is closed until further notice. Prizes should be claimed by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Oregon*

Both the Salem and Wilsonville Lottery offices are temporarily closed. Prizes up to $50,000 should be claimed by mail. For prizes greater than $50,000, you'll need to make an appointment to come to the Oregon Lottery office in Salem. Call 503-540-1000 for assistance.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Pennsyl­vania*

All Lottery Offices are closed. Prizes should be claimed by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Rhode Island*

All prizes should be claimed by mail.

How to claim prizes

South Carolina

The claims center is closed until further notice. Prizes $100,000 or less can be claimed by mail or presented in-person upon reopening. The last day to redeem tickets set to expire during this time period will be extended accordingly. Prizes over $100,000 must be presented in-person when the Claims Center reopens (date uncertain).

The lottery's COVID-19 response

South Dakota

South Dakota Lottery offices are closed, with an uncertain re-opening date. Prizes should be claimed by mail. Prizes $5,000 and above can be claimed in person at the Pierre, Rapid City or Sioux Falls centers by appointment on Tuesdays or Thursdays from 8am to 1pm.

How to claim prizes

Tennessee*

The Nashville Headquarters claim center and the claim centers at the district offices in Chattanooga, Knoxville and Memphis are closed to walk-in prize claims. Prizes less than $50,000 must be claimed by mail. Players who win prizes of $50,000 or more can call to schedule an appointment to come in and claim their prize at Nashville Headquarters. Players should call (615) 324-6688 to make an appointment.

How to claim prizes

Texas

All Texas Lottery Claim Centers are closed until further notice. All winning scratch and draw game tickets with prizes of up to $5 million may be claimed at this time via mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Vermont

The Vermont Lottery has suspended acceptance of claims in-person at the Lottery Headquarters in Berlin, but prizes can be claimed by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Virginia*

Virginia Lottery Customer Service Centers are closed through at least April 30. Players must mail in winning tickets for prize payment.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Washing­ton*

The Washington Lottery has closed all regional offices (customer service centers) in Everett, Federal Way, Spokane, Vancouver and Yakima, as well as all airport and mall kiosks and the Lottery Headquarters in Olypmia. Prizes up to $100,000 should be mailed in. Winners for prizes greater than $100,000 should schedule an appointment to claim winnings at Lottery Headquarters.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Washing­ton, D.C.

The lottery's Shannon Place prize center is closed to walk-in claims. Prizes greater than $5,000 must be claimed in person by appointment only.

How to claim prizes

West Virginia*

The Charleston and Weirton validations offices are closed to walk-in claims, but prize claims can be mailed in. Tickets with expiration dates during the Governor's declared state of emergency can be claimed via mail or in person at Lottery Headquarters no later than 30 days after West Virginia's state of emergency order has been lifted.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Wisconsin*

The Madison validations office is closed to walk-in claims. Winning tickets can be redeemed by mail or in person at the validations office during office hours by appointment only. The Milwaukee validations office is currently unable to redeem Wisconsin lottery tickets.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Wyoming*

Lottery offices are closed through at least April 5. All prizes should be claimed by mail.

The lottery's COVID-19 response

Lottery Post Staff

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24 comments. Last comment 4 months ago by hearsetrax.
Page 1 of 2
Avatar
Simpsonville
United States
Member #163184
January 22, 2015
2229 Posts
Offline
Posted: April 6, 2020, 11:01 am - IP Logged

Excellent article.   Skimming through all the states impacted I did not like Idaho's lottery saying "the Lottery will consider extending claiming periods for all winning tickets impacted by closures".   Either you do or you don't, not a good time for indecisiveness.

    Avatar
    Chasing $ Millions.
    White Shores- California
    United States
    Member #136473
    December 12, 2012
    6269 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: April 6, 2020, 11:30 am - IP Logged

    Unrelated to the topic: But keep yourselves safe out there people. We may not know each other, but we care about our fellow men & women. As the saying goes " Measure twice, cut once."

    Be well.

     * Voice of Reason *   

     

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

      Avatar
      Simpsonville
      United States
      Member #163184
      January 22, 2015
      2229 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: April 6, 2020, 11:47 am - IP Logged

      Unrelated to the topic: But keep yourselves safe out there people. We may not know each other, but we care about our fellow men & women. As the saying goes " Measure twice, cut once."

      Be well.

      Not really unrelated, noise-gate if they don't want folks going to lottery offices for claims!

       

      Now would your chance and other California players to try to get the CA lottery to offer on-line purchases...though would think it would have to go through your Legislature?  IDK.

        CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
        Central TN
        United States
        Member #121189
        January 4, 2012
        4664 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: April 6, 2020, 12:21 pm - IP Logged

        According to the TN Lottery Newsroom under the following article:

        https://www.tnlottery.com/article/no-joke-lucky-player-wins-lotto-america-jackpot-april-fools-day-winning-ticket-sold-cannon

        Currently the claim centers at the Nashville Headquarters and all District Offices (Chattanooga, Memphis and Knoxville) are temporarily closed in response to shelter-in-place guidance during the Coronavirus pandemic.

        However, players who win prizes of $50,000 or more can call to schedule an appointment to come in and claim their prize at Nashville Headquarters. Players should call (615) 324-6688 to make an appointment.

        Integrity: There is just no substitute.

          Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
          50
          Chief Bottle Washer
          New Jersey
          United States
          Member #1
          May 31, 2000
          25763 Posts
          Online
          Posted: April 6, 2020, 1:50 pm - IP Logged

          According to the TN Lottery Newsroom under the following article:

          https://www.tnlottery.com/article/no-joke-lucky-player-wins-lotto-america-jackpot-april-fools-day-winning-ticket-sold-cannon

          Currently the claim centers at the Nashville Headquarters and all District Offices (Chattanooga, Memphis and Knoxville) are temporarily closed in response to shelter-in-place guidance during the Coronavirus pandemic.

          However, players who win prizes of $50,000 or more can call to schedule an appointment to come in and claim their prize at Nashville Headquarters. Players should call (615) 324-6688 to make an appointment.

          Thanks, I have updated Tennessee in the table.

           

          Check the State Lottery Report Card
          What grade did your lottery earn?

           

          Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
          Help eliminate computerized drawings!

            music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
            Fresno, California
            United States
            Member #157851
            August 2, 2014
            3921 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: April 6, 2020, 4:31 pm - IP Logged

            After matching the winning numbers I will contact the California Lottery. I will confirm the number match and the code near the bottom of the ticket. I will ask about the California Lottery Jackpot Election Payment Form. They may want to send it out after the Claim Form is received at the Sacramento, CA headquarters.

             A few bridges to cross after winning!

             "We are all in this together!" 

              music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
              Fresno, California
              United States
              Member #157851
              August 2, 2014
              3921 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: April 6, 2020, 4:36 pm - IP Logged

              Thank You to both Todd Northrop and Kate Northrop. Please stay well and free from the COVID-19

               "We are all in this together!" 

                Avatar
                Chasing $ Millions.
                White Shores- California
                United States
                Member #136473
                December 12, 2012
                6269 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: April 6, 2020, 5:07 pm - IP Logged

                After matching the winning numbers I will contact the California Lottery. I will confirm the number match and the code near the bottom of the ticket. I will ask about the California Lottery Jackpot Election Payment Form. They may want to send it out after the Claim Form is received at the Sacramento, CA headquarters.

                 A few bridges to cross after winning!

                Music, you used the word " l will" 3 times. That generally is not a good thing.Both Larry King & Elizabeth Taylor used it 8 times.Big Smile

                Try " l may" instead. Just saying..

                 * Voice of Reason *   

                 

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

                  Avatar
                  New Member
                  cleveland,ohio
                  United States
                  Member #181365
                  April 25, 2017
                  6 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: April 6, 2020, 5:10 pm - IP Logged

                  2 MAJOR POINTS:

                  Addendum to Ohio Lottery :  Ohio lottery's regional offices are closed, your winning ticket they will validate it if submit by mail ( Who is going to trust them?)

                  or you have until 30 days after the state emergency order is lifted to submit in person.

                  What this article failed to address, though their article is commendable, HOW does one still submit a ticket anonymously ?

                  Clearly if one submits by mail , they must sign it to prevent any potential fraud, after photocopying the front & back of the winning ticket..

                  but for those states who can claim anonymously, how does each state address that concern ?

                    Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                    50
                    Chief Bottle Washer
                    New Jersey
                    United States
                    Member #1
                    May 31, 2000
                    25763 Posts
                    Online
                    Posted: April 6, 2020, 5:25 pm - IP Logged

                    2 MAJOR POINTS:

                    Addendum to Ohio Lottery :  Ohio lottery's regional offices are closed, your winning ticket they will validate it if submit by mail ( Who is going to trust them?)

                    or you have until 30 days after the state emergency order is lifted to submit in person.

                    What this article failed to address, though their article is commendable, HOW does one still submit a ticket anonymously ?

                    Clearly if one submits by mail , they must sign it to prevent any potential fraud, after photocopying the front & back of the winning ticket..

                    but for those states who can claim anonymously, how does each state address that concern ?

                    With all "anonymous" prize claim options, the lottery always knows who you are when you claim the prize.  The anonymous part is that they won't release your name to the public or force you to participate in a news conference.  So the COVID-19 responses have no bearing or effect on claiming anonymously.

                     

                    Check the State Lottery Report Card
                    What grade did your lottery earn?

                     

                    Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                    Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                      Artist77's avatar - batman14

                      United States
                      Member #121741
                      January 16, 2012
                      7578 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: April 6, 2020, 6:33 pm - IP Logged

                      After matching the winning numbers I will contact the California Lottery. I will confirm the number match and the code near the bottom of the ticket. I will ask about the California Lottery Jackpot Election Payment Form. They may want to send it out after the Claim Form is received at the Sacramento, CA headquarters.

                       A few bridges to cross after winning!

                      I like the positive thinking with "I will."  I was taught to never say "I may" since it sounds wishy washy.

                      Je vous salue, Marie, pleine de grace.  We will rebuild!

                        Avatar
                        Chasing $ Millions.
                        White Shores- California
                        United States
                        Member #136473
                        December 12, 2012
                        6269 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: April 6, 2020, 7:16 pm - IP Logged

                        Right, Sure. Peter probably felt the same way at Mark 14:29,30.

                         * Voice of Reason *   

                         

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

                          music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
                          Fresno, California
                          United States
                          Member #157851
                          August 2, 2014
                          3921 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: April 6, 2020, 7:32 pm - IP Logged

                          I like the positive thinking with "I will."  I was taught to never say "I may" since it sounds wishy washy.

                          Thank You Artist77 for your positive outlook. I hope you still have that kind of outlook now where France is today. The whole world is suffering. We are all in this together.

                            When I contact the California Lottery I guess they will have answers to all my questions. 

                            Hoping to win big this week.!!

                           "We are all in this together!" 

                            greatguy's avatar - peace
                            Cali
                            United States
                            Member #198167
                            May 13, 2019
                            106 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: April 6, 2020, 8:38 pm - IP Logged

                            If You don't know, Now You know "non-essential." 

                            Gg~Keep the peace.