|Posted: January 25, 2006, 5:58 am - IP Logged|
While 80 percent of Australians are prepared to take a punt on the lottery each week, it appears some are not so diligent about following it up, with literally millions of dollars still waiting to be collected.
Golden Casket's Bill Thorburn says millions of dollars are up for grabs around the country, but unless the winners come forward, it can't be handed out.
In Brisbane, Marlo Brack has been searching high and low for a lucky customer who has won $1 million. She thinks the unclaimed prize might be a case of a customer on holiday, or even an elderly person who unknowingly marked a ticket incorrectly.
Joyce Bayle, who runs an agency in NSW, is minding the largest amount of loot — $3.3 million Tattslotto dollars — but no-one seems to want it.
"It's three years now — '97 it was won — and it's still waiting for that lucky person," she said.
Victoria's Ken Gibbs can't believe how much money he is holding on to — $2.5 million — and he just wants people to be aware that there is a ticket so they can come and collect their money.
And while time limits for winners to come forward vary from state to state, even punters who have lost their tickets are able to make claims. But, be warned, specific information is required before an investigation can take place, and even if the outcome is positive, it could take up to 12 months before you see a cent of your winnings.
But miracles do happen ... One ticket was paid out 37 years after the winner died.
The safest thing, according to Bill Thorburn, is to register your ticket on one of the cards that are offered by the various lotteries, and that guarantees that if you win a prize it will be paid back.