If you’ve ever thought about winning the powerball jackpot, you know it can be a huge amount of money. And you also know that winning a big lottery prize comes with significant tax implications.
If you win the Powerball jackpot, you can choose to receive your money as a lump sum payment or as an annuity. Learn how to determine which option you should choose and whether it would be best for your specific situation.
The biggest jackpot ever won
Did anyone win the powerball jackpot on Tuesday? The winning ticket was purchased in Des Plaines, Illinois. The winner chose to take a lump sum of more than $780 million.
A single ticket matched the five main numbers and the Powerball to win the largest prize ever. The jackpot reached a record $1.586 billion in 2016.
One of the three winners split the money two ways, with each taking home $443.3 million (less taxes). Another won the prize on a single ticket in South Carolina.
The eldest winner of the $590.5 million jackpot was Gloria Mackenzie, who took home $278 million after taxes.
She is the oldest winner of a lottery jackpot in history, and her win was the biggest prize to hit the game.
Suzanne Mullins won a Virginia lottery jackpot in 1993. She agreed to split the money three ways with her husband and daughter, but after paying for an uninsured family member’s medical expenses she was unable to keep up with the payments. She later took advantage of a change in lottery rules that let her receive future payments in a lump sum.
The biggest jackpot on a single ticket
Until recently, there had been no winner of the $2.04 billion Powerball jackpot, but a ticket sold in California has matched all the winning numbers and won the prize. The prize is the largest ever for a single ticket, and it was sold in a convenience store near Altadena, California.
To win the Powerball jackpot, players must match all five white balls and one red Powerball by paying $2 per ticket. The odds of winning are 1 in 292.2 million.
The estimated jackpot for Tuesday night’s drawing is $754.6 million, and the winner will have to choose between an annuity payment and a cash option. The annuity payments grow over 29 years, while the cash prize is a lump sum paid out in one payment.
It’s not unusual for a lottery jackpot to attract no winners until it grows large enough to draw an increasing number of participants. However, experts say massive, growing jackpots aren’t happening accidentally. They’re simply more attractive to people who play the lottery as a way to win big money without spending a lot of time or money.
The biggest jackpot split
When the Powerball jackpot gets big, it’s easy to start thinking about all the fun things you would do with your newfound fortune. Maybe you’ll buy a house, a car, or give some to family and friends.
That’s why it’s so important to keep in mind that when you win the lottery, you won’t necessarily get the full amount right away. In fact, most winners end up taking home considerably less money than they could have because of taxes.
This was the case with a nearly $1.6 billion prize won in January 2016 that was split among three winners: Maureen Smith and David Kaltschmidt of Florida, Marvin and Mae Acosta of California, and John and Lisa Robinson of Tennessee. They each won a share of the jackpot that gave them options to take it in annuities or as a lump sum payment.
The biggest jackpot not won
When you win a big jackpot, it can be overwhelming. So it’s important to be cautious when claiming your prize.
While winning the lottery is a life-changing event, it can also create a lot of complications, according to experts. They recommend that you hire a good financial and legal team, keep your winning ticket safe and stay anonymous as much as possible.
If nobody claims the $1.337 billion Mega Millions jackpot, it could become the largest unclaimed lottery prize in U.S. history, according to Powerball.
This jackpot was won in July, and the winning ticket was sold at a Speedway convenience store in Des Plaines, Illinois. The winner chose to take a lump sum payment instead of the annuity option that most winners choose.