Mega Million $1.3 Billion Jackpot Still Hasn't Been Claimed

Whoever won the $1.34 billion Mega Millions jackpot may not know they are now rich. PEOPLE reports an Illinois resident purchased the winning ticket at a Speedway gas station in Des Plaines, about 20 miles outside Chicago but has yet to claim their grand prize. The estimated payout after fees and taxes is reported to be $742.2 million. This jackpot is the second largest in the lottery's 20-year history. The odds of winning such a prize is very slim, 1 in 302,575,350 to be exact, per Mega Millions. The largest jackpot of any U.S. lottery game was $1.586 billion from a Powerball prize in 2016, with the winning divided between ticket holders.

In Illinois, the winner has 12 months from the date of the draw to claim their prize. But they only have 60 days from the draw date to choose the cash option or annual payments. Lagging on turning in the winning ticket is not uncommon. "For a prize of this magnitude, it's not unusual for the winner to take a while to claim," Harold Mays, the Illinois Lottery Director, said in a previous statement. "I'm sure they're going through a range of emotions."

He continued: "We will work closely with the winner to respect any wishes for privacy and support them in any way we can to provide a positive winning experience. While some may believe winners are hesitant to cash out because of being outed, Illinois regulations allow those who win a prize of $125,000 or more can choose to remain anonymous.

If the prize in question remains unclaimed past the deadline, all money each participating state spent on contributing to the jackpot will be returned. 

0comments