Watch Out, Your Powerball Winnings Can Expire
Less than an hour after the winning numbers in the $1.5 billion Powerball jackpot were announced, a Chino Hills, CA convenience store claimed that it had sold a grand-prize-winning ticket. This means that someone, somewhere (most likely close to Chino Hills) is in possession of what I would unhesitatingly call one of Willy Wonka’s golden tickets. So how long does the Powerball winner have to claim the jackpot?
UPDATE: This post was originally published in January 2016. As of Aug. 23, 2017, the new Powerball jackpot has hit $700 million (and if there are no winners, it’ll go to $1 billion). The Powerball will be drawn at 10:59 p.m. EST.
EARLIER: The state of California actually has its own ticket expiration policy. The state’s lottery site says that a Powerball jackpot can be claimed for up to one year from the date of the draw. Of course, unless the holder of the grand prize ticket accidentally flushes the super-expensive piece of paper down the toilet in an instance of unbelievable calamity, it likely won’t take that long before the winner comes forward to claim the largest prize in lotto history.
It turns out that California was home to a whole slew of smaller, less-lucrative golden ticket winners, as well. The state had 12 tickets that matched five out of the six drawn numbers, which means prizes for a lucky dozen people of $1 million or $50,000, depending on whether the red Powerball number was one of the five.
Winners of smaller Powerball prizes don’t have as long as jackpot winners to claim their cash before their tickets expire, though. Players have 180 days from Wednesday’s draw to claim all prizes other than the jackpot вЂ” yes, $4 is a win too!
If Americans know nothing else вЂ” like who may have won a prize in any of the other 49 states вЂ” they sure know now that the West Coast is the best coast for stepping into a 7-Eleven for a Slurpie and stepping out with a $1.5 billion ticket in your pocket. Well, it might not be the best coast at this very moment, since you could very well get trampled while trying to get through the door.
While there’s no information at this point on the jackpot ticket holder, California is not among the states that guarantee lotto winners the right to complete anonymity. This means you’ll probably be hearing some sort of name, as long as the winner doesn’t do the unthinkable and neglect to actually claim the prize. If they are clever enough to go for semi-anonymity and create a blind trust before stepping up, though, then the listing could bear a title, like California Dreamin’ LLC, instead of a name.
The winner definitely shouldn’t take too much time coming up with a badass trust name. It’s time to make like that golden ticket is a gallon of milk close to spoiling, because that baby does expire.Less than an hour after the winning numbers in the $1.5 billion Powerball jackpot were announced, a Chino Hills, CA convenience store claimed that it had sold a grand-prize-winning ticket. This means that someone, somewhere (most likely close toвЂ¦
Sales cut-off times vary by one to two hours before the drawings on Wednesday and Saturday evenings, depending on the selling jurisdiction.
Some lotteries sell Powerball® tickets over the Internet, but the service is only available to residents of that jurisdiction. The sale of Powerball tickets over the Internet or by mail across jurisdictional borders is restricted. Lotteries may refuse to pay out prize money on Powerball tickets purchased on any website other than their own. Please contact your lottery with any further questions.
You do not have to be a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident to play Powerball®. Players from jurisdictions where Powerball tickets are not sold, either in the United States or outside the country, when visiting a selling jurisdiction, can purchase Powerball tickets from a retailer licensed or authorized by the selling jurisdiction, if they meet the legal age requirement in the jurisdiction of purchase. Federal and jurisdictional income taxes may apply to any claimed prize money.
The 10X multiplier is only in play when the advertised jackpot annuity is $150 million or less.
Powerball® tickets print the white ball numbers in numerical order of a given play. You can match the white ball numbers in any order of a given play to win a prize. The red Powerball number of a given play on your ticket must match the red Powerball drawn. Each play on a ticket is separately determined; players cannot crisscross play lines on a ticket or combine numbers from other tickets.
While there are many factors that determine the advertised Grand Prize estimate in the Powerball® game; two important ones are games sales and the annuity factor.
A number of variables can affect game sales, such as seasonality or a big Mega Millions jackpot. Traditionally, game sales are stronger for a Saturday drawing versus a Wednesday drawing.
The annuity factor, or the cost to fund an annuity prize, is another key component. The annuity factor is made up of interest rates for securities purchased to fund prize payments. The higher the interest rates, the higher the advertised Grand Prize. You might not realize that an economic reality like interest rates impact even the Powerball jackpot, but they do!
Most players think the odds of matching the Powerball to win a prize are 1 in 26, since the Powerball is drawn from a field of numbers from 1 to 26.
But consider this…
The odds of matching the Powerball ALONE are harder than 1 in 26, because there is also the chance you could match one or more white balls, in addition to the Powerball, to win another prize.
Powerball numbers are drawn from two sets of numbers, so the odds of winning a prize are calculated by combining the odds for both sets of numbers for all prize levels. The odds for matching just the Powerball are calculated by combining the odds of selecting the Powerball and the odds of not selecting any of the five numbers from the first set of numbers drawn.
Prizes must be claimed in the jurisdiction where the winning ticket was purchased. Players can generally claim a prize up to $600 at any licensed lottery retailer in the jurisdiction where they bought the ticket. Prizes over $600 can be claimed at some lottery offices, depending on the amount, and also at lottery headquarters. Please contact your lottery with any further questions.
Ticket expiration dates typically vary from 90 days to one year depending on the selling jurisdiction. The expiration date is often listed on the back of your ticket. If the expiration date is not listed, check with your lottery.
Unclaimed prizes are kept by the lottery jurisdiction. If a Grand Prize goes unclaimed, the money must be returned to all lotteries in proportion to their sales for the draw run. The lotteries then distribute the money, based on their own jurisdiction’s laws, to other lottery games or to their jurisdiction’s general fund, or otherwise as required by law.
Every jurisdiction has its own law on winners remaining anonymous. Some jurisdictions are required by law to provide the winner’s name, city of residence, game won and prize amount to any third party that requests the information. Other jurisdictions allow winners to create trusts to shield their names from the public, or otherwise claim prizes anonymously. Check with your lottery to see if taking a photo of the winner is required and what its rules are on prize claims. Even if you keep your identity secret from the media and the public, you will have to be known to the lottery so officials can confirm you are eligible to play and win, as well as other legal requirements.
A Powerball jackpot winner may choose to receive their prize as an annuity, paid in 30 graduated payments over 29 years, or a lump-sum payment (cash option). For the annuity, the annual payments increase by 5%. The cash value option, in general, is the amount of money required to be in the jackpot prize pool, on the day of the drawing, to fund the estimated jackpot annuity prize. The advertised jackpot annuity and cash value are estimates until ticket sales are final, and for the annuity, until the Multi-State Lottery Association takes bids on the purchase of securities.
Federal and jurisdictional income taxes apply to both jackpot prize options.
Check with your lottery for its rules on how to claim a jackpot prize and the correct procedure for selecting the annuity or cash value option.
If a jackpot winner dies before receiving all annual installments, the balance of the prize will be paid to the winner’s estate. Upon receipt of a court order, annual prize payments will continue to be paid to the winner’s heirs. Other provisions may also apply depending on the laws of the lottery paying the prize.
A United States $100 bill is .0043 inches thick.
Ten thousand $100 bills equals $1 million (10,000 x $100 = $1,000,000).
Therefore, a $1 million stack of $100 bills is 43 inches tall (10,000 x .0043 inches = 43 inches).
43 inches = 3.5833 feet
A stack of one hundred dollar bills equaling $40,000,000 is 143.33 feet tall (40 x 3.5833 feet = 143.33 feet).Powerball expiration Sales cut-off times vary by one to two hours before the drawings on Wednesday and Saturday evenings, depending on the selling jurisdiction. Some lotteries sell Powerball® ]]>