Powerball players might do well to make sure they check their numbers more carefully after each drawing to ensure that they haven’t missed any numbers.
A grand prize ticket worth $1 million that was purchased in Michigan a year earlier will expire in about two weeks – on May 5. In Maryland, after a $10 million Powerball prize was unclaimed by the deadline, no one came forward by the end of the month to claim it.
Carole Gentry, the spokesperson for Maryland Lottery and Gaming, told The Maryland Post that it is important to check all prize levels on your ticket. It does not mean you did not win any other prizes, just because you have not won the jackpot.”
There is a top prize on Powerball of $370 million for Wednesday night’s drawing, which is far greater than the number of unclaimed smaller prize amounts. At the same time, a number of jackpots, including those in both Powerball and Mega Millions, remain unclaimed by their respective winners.
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A ticket bought in Florida in 2013 that was worth $16.5 million (representing a third of the $50 million jackpot split three ways) was the first to be sold in the state. Another in 2011, acquired in Georgia, was worth $77.1 million and was the second to be sold.
In addition to the biggest prizes, there are also other lesser money amounts that can end up unclaimed, due to various reasons, such as loss of a ticket, forgetting to check the winning numbers or other unfortunate events.
On top of the multi-state games, there are also state-specific lotteries that do not facilitate the prize distribution between the winners.
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The California Lottery, for example, did not produce a winning ticket for a single $63 million lottery prize that was offered in 2016.
According to the rules of the states that participate in Powerball and Mega Millions, a winner has a limited period during which they can claim their prizes. Others allow for a complete year from the date the drawing is made, while some give three or six months.
If those winnings go unclaimed, what happens to them? The money is, generally speaking, returned to the states from which the tickets were purchased.
Thereafter, it is determined by the state’s laws and regulations. Depending on the jurisdiction, the funds must be returned to the players either in the form of bonuses or second chances. On the other hand, there could also be instances in which the unclaimed amounts are put toward specific purposes, like educating children.
There is a chance that you will win a jackpot worth a lot of money if you play the Mega Millions game. This happens on an average of one in every 292 million times.