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There’s a chance that a Mega Millions player is about to join a very short list: winners who scoop up a jackpot worth more than $1 billion.
The grand prize is an estimated $1.35 billion for Friday night’s drawing. That’s how much you would win if you took the windfall as an annuity paid out over three decades. (The upfront option is $724.6 million as of Friday noon).
Between Mega Millions and Powerball, there were five other jackpot winners totaling more than $1 billion, including one worth more than $2 billion. If Friday’s drawing produces a winner (or winners), the amount would mark the second largest Mega Millions jackpot of all time and the fourth largest lottery win in history.
With just a tiny chance of a single combination of numbers hitting the Motherlode – 1 in 302.6 million – the amount has grown since October 14th with twice-weekly draws. At that point, the jackpot was reset to $20 million after two tickets were sold in Florida and California shared a $502 million top prize.
If you beat the odds stacked against you, know that winning isn’t as easy as claiming your prize and moving on with life, experts say.
“There’s an emotional component to this kind of newfound wealth that’s almost as big as the gains,” said Emily Irwin, managing director of advisory and planning at Wells Fargo Wealth & Investment Management.
“Part of that is that you’re most likely going to have cycles of surprise, shock, relief, and then probably feeling, ‘What do I do next?'” Irwin said. “It can be incredibly overwhelming.”
Here are some tips to help you in the early stages of becoming a jackpot winner.
1. Avoid sharing news
Make sure you can keep your ticket in a safe place, e.g. B. in a locker. Experts also recommend taking a photo of yourself with the ticket.
Also, while it’s often recommended to sign the back of the ticket right away, it can be worth knowing your state’s laws first.
In some jurisdictions you can remain anonymous. Others don’t – but in these states you may be able to set up a legal entity like a trust that will claim the windfall and protect your name from the public. In other words, the trust’s name would have to be on the back of the ticket.
No need to rush to lottery headquarters. Depending on where you bought the ticket, you have anywhere from 60 or 90 days to a year to claim your windfall. Note that some states may have a shorter window to apply if you want the cash instead of the annuity.
During this period before claiming, you should put together a team of experts. This group should include at least one experienced attorney, one accountant and one financial advisor.
This group can help you with your decision-making as you navigate your newfound wealth.
For example, one of the first decisions you would make would be whether to take the $1.35 billion as an annuity or as a one-time lump sum payment of $724.6 million.
However, you don’t have to deal with these big money matters right away.
“When you start working with your team … your goals and values are an incredible starting point for the conversation,” Irwin said. “You don’t want to get so caught up in taxes and [other financial aspects] before you think about what’s really important, because that will affect all your other decisions.”
Meanwhile, Powerball’s jackpot is $404 million (with a $211.7 million cash option) for the next drawing, which is scheduled for Saturday night. The chance of winning the grand prize in this game is about 1 in 292 million.
https://www.cnbc.com/2023/01/13/mega-millions-jackpot-is-1point35-billion-3-tips-for-navigating-a-win.html Mega Millions jackpot is $1.35 billion. 3 tips for navigating a win