Is the 1.5 Billion Dollar Winner Blowing It?
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As of November 15, 2018, it’s been almost a month since numbers were drawn for a historically massive Mega Millions game, and the owner of the over $1.5 billion winning ticket had not, at least as of Wednesday, claimed their prize.
Jason Kurland is a guy who dubs himself the Lottery Lawyer and has spoken to me before about what you’re supposed to do if you win the jackpot.
He broke down that scenario for me-and other nightmarish possibilities that might be giving the Mega Millions winner pause.
Most people strategically delay claiming their prize, right? Jason Kurland: Yeah, and there are a lot of reasons for that.
Winners want to make sure everything is taken care of before they go claim.
Sometimes people don’t even know that they’re the winner the next day.
I mean this is a big one, but I’ve had some big winners who didn’t even know for a couple of weeks that they’ve won, and then they’ve gone back to check their ticket.
I’ve had winners call me that night, and then probably a month later at the longest.
Is there any reason that not coming forward right away might be a mistake? I will tell you that this is so much money that-I’ll do the quick math-even very conservative investments, you’re talking about $65,000 a day of interest you’re giving up every day you don’t claim it.
What happens if no one claims the money? Let me tell you, six months is a very hard rule.
As everyone knows, there’s so much bad that can happen to you when everyone knows you’re loaded.
The lottery commission there will do their own background check on the winner and make sure that it’s not somebody who works for the lottery or who owes child support or other state funds, and then they just won’t disclose it to the public.
Others will let you claim in a trust and will still release your name.
Some will let you claim through an attorney, and then others will let you be purely anonymous, like South Carolina.
Does anyone ever come to you in panic, wondering if they even want to claim it? Is it possible the sheer amount of money being offered here has the winner terrified? Yes, many people are panicked, but no one to the extent of not taking the money.