Lottery Winner's Anonymous

No, not some type of 12-step meeting where a guy gets up and says, "Hi, I'm Bill and I'm a lottery winner".

According to the AP and the Arizona Republic, lottery winners in Arizona would be able to keep their anonymity under a bill approved Wednesday following a heated hearing in a state Senate committee that had Democrat arguing it would diminish public accountability against Republican sponsors. The bill was prompted by the public release of an Arizona man's name after he won half of a $587.5 million Powerball jackpot late last year. Matthew Good's name was released under Arizona public records laws after he collected the $192 million cash option payout. He's never spoken publicly about the lottery win. Bill sponsor State Representative John Kavanagh said players shouldn't face safety risks just because they're lucky enough to win big.

The bill quickly passed the House but ran into opposition in a Senate committee Wednesday. "I don't understand why a lottery winner would be protected and we wouldn't protect other people in similar circumstances," Sen. Bob Worsley asked, mentioning high income executives as an example. But Kavanagh said there's a big difference, saying lottery winners are generally private people who don't seek the limelight. Kavanagh said lottery winner Good approached him in Fountain Hills after the bill passed a House committee last month and thanked him for carrying the bill. "He also said he hasn't had a good night's rest since he won the money because he was so fearful," Kavanagh told the committee.

Opponents stated "It can't be a success without accountability. "There can be no transparency and accountability if the names of the winners are confidential."
Rep. Kavanagh said there's plenty of checks and balances in the Lottery system without outing big winners. "Ultimately what's we're balancing here is the individual right to privacy and the public's right to know," Kavanagh said. But he said in this case there's no reason to release the names.

Most states require winners' names to be disclosed in some way. Of 44 states participating in Powerball and 33 in Mega-Millions, only Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota and Ohio allow blanket anonymity. Some states require an appearance at a press conference. Others, including Arizona, don't require winners to appear in public, but their names can be obtained through public records laws.

The bill isn't opposed by the Arizona Lottery, but other lotteries argue they need the publicity to help sell tickets and that releasing winners' names lets the public know the games aren't fixed. The bill passed committee on a 5-2 vote and now goes to the full Arizona Senate for consideration.
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The Powerball jackpot rolled last night pushing next Saturday's prize over $100 million. Tomorrow's Mega Millions jackpot is considerably smaller:

POWERBALL
03/02/2013
$103,000,000 est
Cash Option:$64,200,000

MEGA MILLIONS
03/01/2013
$19,000,000 est
Cash Option:$14,100,000

When Did You Stop Beating Your Wife?

This is a classic example of a loaded question; a question which contains a controversial or unjustified assumption ( e.g., a presumption of guilt). North Carolina lawmakers have now introduced a loaded question bill in the legislature known as the Honest Lottery Act. Was the North Carolina Educational Lottery ever dishonest? Absolutely not!

According to WRAL.com, a bill filed by a bipartisan group of North Carolina lawmakers would place restrictions on lottery advertising and remove the word "education" from the state gambling enterprises formal title. Both Democrats and Republicans sponsored The Honest Lottery Act, HB 156. The bill would block the lottery from advertising at high school and college athletic events.

"We would never, ever do high schools," said Alice Garland, director of the state lottery. For a time, lottery advertising was banned from UNC campuses. The current UNC president, Thomas Ross, reversed that policy and there is lottery advertising on a handful of campuses' sporting events now, including UNC-Chapel Hill and NC State University.

"We don't sell tickets there," Garland said. And the advertising is aimed at letting people know about the portion of lottery proceeds that go to support university scholarships. "We think that's a very good message for a college venue," she said.

As for the part of the measure that would removed the word education form the title of the North Carolina Education Lottery, Garland called that, "a mistake. "I think it plays right into the public impression that the legislature is spending the money on something other than education," she said.

My read on this is the legislative leaders have some undisclosed future plans to divert lottery generated funds for some other pet project. Taking “Education” out of the lottery’s name will deflect future criticism when it happens. They believe voters have short memories.
I feel for the NCEL employees and Director Garland. I know from experience that every time you deal with legislators, logic gets twisted and you are left wanting to take a shower to wash off their stench.
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In the multi-state lottery game Mega Millions rolled raising next Friday’s jackpot. Tonight’s Powerball drawing features a nice jackpot.
POWERBALL
02/27/2013
$90,000,000 est
Cash Option:$56,100,000

MEGA MILLIONS
03/01/2013
$19,000,000 est
Cash Option:$14,100,000

Losing Tickets for Losing Teams?

According to a Florida Lottery press release, the Florida Lottery, along with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Miami Dolphins, announced a partnership to offer Lottery players a chance to win great prizes in the FANTASY 5 Football Draft Day Experience Promotion. Now through Wednesday, April 3, players who purchase a FANTASY 5 ticket of $5 or more will receive a voucher that contains a unique number to be entered on the Florida Lottery's website for a chance to win a trip to New York to attend the first day of the 2013 professional football draft on April 25, 2013, 2013 season tickets and more.

Two drawings per team will be held, the first on March 15 and the second on April 5, from vouchers submitted during the entry period for each drawing. In each team's drawing, one player will win a trip for two to New York to attend the first day of the 2013 professional football draft at Radio City Music Hall plus airline tickets, hotel accommodations, two team hats and jerseys, and $1,000; five players will win a pair of 2013 season tickets; ten winners will each receive two VIP credentials to their team's official Draft Day Watch Party on April 25, 2013; ten players will win a pair of single game tickets to a 2013 regular season home game and 20 winners will each receive two team hats and t-shirts! Additional information about the promotion is available on the Florida Lottery website.
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Now my take on this is the Florida Lottery really needs to have players submit LOSING tickets to win the prizes.

They should have called the promotion" Losing Tickets for Losing Teams" Let's look at last season:
2012 Miami Dolphins season
Record 7–9
2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers season
Record 7–9
2012 Jacksonville Jaguars season
Record 2–14
Need I say more?

Editorial Slams North Carolina Lottery

I'll slam a state lottery if it deserves it. But I will defend a lottery if it is unfairly criticized.

A recent (unsigned) editorial in the Daily Tarheel, the student newspaper at the University of North Carolina, the writer states the North Carolina Education Lottery (NCEL) “doesn't deserve education in its name" (because) “the amount of lottery revenue that actually goes to education has been falling. In 2007, 35 percent of the money made off of the lottery went to schools. In 2012, schools only received about 30 percent of the proceeds." The editorial goes on to say, “If North Carolina continues to give less and less of that money to schools, then is the lottery really serving its purpose? Why brand the lottery as a benefit to schools, only to chip away at the money schools actually receive?"

The writer really needs to go to a simple Finance 101 class at school and also retake a journalism class where they learned about the value of thorough research on the subject.

The bottom line is, you can’t spend a percentage. Like most lotteries, the NCEL has found that by reducing the percentage of what they keep, and returning the additional percentage to the players in the form of higher payouts, they can generate increasing profits. While the NECL returned less as a percentage in 2012 vs 2007, they returned more dollars. 2012 saw record setting transfers to education in North Carolina. From page 25 of the NCEL’s 2012 Annual Report we see, “North Carolina General Statute Section 18C-164 (a) requires the NCEL to transfer net proceeds from operations and any prior year surplus to the State of North Carolina four times a year. In fiscal year 2012, the sum total of these four cash transfers was $456.8 million, the largest annual total for cash transfers in NCEL’s history. Total cash transfers for fiscal years 2011 and 2010 were $446.9 million and $419.5 million, respectively.”

The Daily Tarheel needs to retract and apologize for the mistake.

Lottery Winner, Age 60, Does the Math - Takes 20 Year Payout

This lottery winner was smart. At age 60 he did the math and chose to receive his winnings via a 20 year annuity rather than taking it as a one-time lump sum payout.

Pfafftown, NC resident Rusty Hunter has lived in North Carolina all his life. These days, he’s semi-retired, keeping busy as a self-employed handyman.
This week, he became the first winner of $4 million in the lottery’s new $4,000,000 Gold Bullion scratch-off game. No one in state history has won a larger guaranteed instant prize.
“I’m a little more retired now,” Hunter said as he claimed his prize. “To win it – what I won – is like ‘Whoa.’”

Hunter, 60, will receive his $4 million prize in annuity payments of $200,000 for the next 20 years. After depositing his first after-tax check for $136,006, Hunter has already purchased a new Chevy Silverado pick-up truck and shared plans to buy an Airstream trailer. Hunter added that he would like to buy a vacation home in the mountains where he can go hunting and fishing and spend time with his dad.
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Hunter did the right thing. Remember he wants to spend time with his dad, so with good genes like that, chances are Hunter will outlive the 20 year payout period. There are big tax savings in taking a payout of that size over 20 years. The current income tax rate for $200,000 is 28% for a head of household. Had he taken a lump sum payout of approximately $2.8 million, he would have paid nearly 40% in Federal income tax. You always have to consider taxes before you decide how to claim lottery winnings.
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Powerball rolled last night, increasing the jackpot for next Wednesday. The next Mega Millions jackpot is much smaller.

POWERBALL
02/27/2013
$90,000,000 est
Cash Option: $56,100,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/26/2013
$13,000,000 est
Cash Option: $9,500,000

We've won the lottery! Must be time to sue!

I've kept it no secret I'm writing a few books for lottery players. One is called "The Guide for Group Lottery play - Avoiding Lawsuits". It’s not quite ready for publication but once again we find former friends are suing over a group lotto win, this time in Indiana.

Eight stylists from Lou’s Creative Styles salon in Indianapolis pitched into a pool for the Hoosier Lottery. The woman selected to purchase for the group says she also bought a number of tickets for herself. She won the $9.5 million jackpot with what she is claiming was her own ticket, separate from the pool.

Now, the other seven stylists are trying to get their share of the jackpot. They have filed for a restraining order to freeze the jackpot, pending proof that the woman did in fact purchase her ticket independently. This will be the responsibility of a judge for Marion County, Indiana.

Attorney Scott Montross, who is representing the seven women, told WTHR-TV that they are trying “to slow down the train until we can figure things out.” He later told the Indianapolis Star that “We are concerned that the winning ticket may have been purchased with the group’s money… There’s a dispute about it, but until there is something more definitive, we were trying to keep a low profile.”

In the meantime, $9.5 million remain in the hands of the Hoosier Lotto. Spokesman Al Larsen said, “We’ll just stand by and look forward to paying that prize at some moment… That’s all you can do.”

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In the multi-state lotto games Mega Million rolled last night. Tonight’s Powerball drawing is for a nice chunk of change.

POWERBALL
02/23/2013
$80,000,000 est
Cash Option:$50,000,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/26/2013
$13,000,000 est
Cash Option:$9,500,000

Lotto winner choses Anonymity - I doubt she gets it

The $26 Million Mega Millions lotto winner this week in Maryland has chosen to remain anonymous. BUT I seriously doubt she will get her wish because she violated the rules.

In
previous posts I’ve talked about the book I’m writing called “Read This BEFORE You Win the Lottery” One of the very first rules in the book for lottery winners is, “Keep Your Mouth Shut”. If you call your grown daughter and then your fiancee telling them that you’ve won the lottery, considering human nature, at least 64 people knew who had won within 24 hours. Those 64 will tell another 124 people and within a week everyone in her neighborhood will know she won.

She also violated another rule about consulting legal and financial professionals before claiming the lottery win. This woman didn’t take time to have good consultations with financial, tax and legal professionals. She discovered she won Wednesday and the prize was claimed the next day. If she had taken time to get advice, being 48 years old, she should have opted for taking the $26 million lottery jackpot winnings over the 26 year annuity term, bringing in around $640,000 a year after taxes. However, she chose a one time cash payout of $12.6 million before taxes. If she’s lucky she may wind up with $6.9 million after her tax bill.

I fear this poor woman is going to wind up in the pile of lottery winners who go bankrupt in a couple of years. With a little planning she could have been set for life. That being said, here’s the story from the Maryland Lottery.
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Before going to bed Tuesday night, a Mount Airy, MD man joked with his fiancée that they would wake up millionaires. Come Wednesday morning, they were.

The woman, who chose to remain anonymous, said she checked the winning Mega Million numbers online Wednesday morning and found that her ticket matched all five numbers plus the Mega Ball. She called her daughter and had her double-check the winning numbers before calling her fiancé to share the $26 million news.
After choosing the cash option, they will take home $12.6 million after taxes.

“I am still in denial,” said the 48-year-old grandmother of two in a news release. “I even drove by the store (Mount Airy Shell,649 Lakeview Drive) the next day to see if it was real. One look at the parking lot with all the news vans and I knew it was true.”

The lucky winner, who babysits her grandchildren, playfully told her daughter that she could no longer watch the kids — unless it was at the beach. That’s because the 48-year-old retiree plans to buy a beach house — or two. “This will be the first time anyone from our family has ever owned a home,” the winner told Lottery officials.

This is the first Mega Millions jackpot win in Maryland since three public education employees shared the $218.6 million portion of the record-breaking $656 million jackpot from March 2012, according to Maryland Lottery officials.

His Lottery Winnings Go to The Birds

Last week I told you about a Georgia Lottery winner who was planning on raising turkeys and chickens with his winnings. Now a California Lottery winner is also "going to the birds" with his winnings.
According to the San Jose Mercury News, California Lottery winner Mark Brown said when he was asked what he would do with his winnings, "I think I'll buy some more chickens…and I might buy a Teacup pig, too."
The 50 year old former car salesman was already raising chickens in his back yard in San Jose CA when he bought two $10 Scratchers game tickets on Christmas Eve and discovered one was worth $1 million. After taxes, he said he'll get about $750,000.

Brown did the smart thing

Mark Brown waited almost 7 weeks to redeem his winning ticket while he consulted with a lawyer and accountant on how to make the money last and grow.
He doesn't have an investment plan, at least not yet, but the single father wants to spend some on his two daughters and he wants to add more chickens to the 25 he already has at home in unincorporated Santa Clara County, CA.
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The Powerball jackpot rolled with no jackpot winner on Wednesday. Friday’s Mega Millions jackpot is close to the minimum level. Check out your better odds state lottery game if you’re waiting for these jackpots to rise.

POWERBALL
02/23/2013
$80,000,000 est
Cash Option:$50,000,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/22/2013
$12,000,000 est
Cash Option:$8,800,000

The Power of One Little Zero

A Virginia woman told lottery officials that she was so excited when scratched part of a Virginia Lottery Emerald Green lottery ticket and believed she had won $10,000 from the game that she was dancing through her house.
Uh…where was that comma amongst the zeros? Sharon Revell scratched more of the ticket and learned she actually had a ticket worth more, according to a release from the Virginia Lottery. She started to feel ill and her husband had to scratch the rest of the ticket, which was actually worth 10 times more than she thought originally. She had won $100,000.
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In multi-state lottery games, Mega Millions wasn’t hit last night so it continues its slow growth. Powerball, while low, is nothing to sneeze at for tonight’s drawing.

POWERBALL
02/20/2013
$70,000,000 est
Cash Option:$43,800,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/22/2013
$12,000,000 est
Cash Option:$8,800,000

Got a Little Lotto? Don't Ignore It

Does you state lottery have a little lotto game? They often have the best odds of winning a substantial lottery prize but tend to be ignored by a lot of lottery players.
Don’t let jackpot greed get in the way of winning a great prize. If your state lottery has a little lotto or lotto 5 game, play it regularly. I’ll examine a few.

Looking at California Lottery’s Fantasy 5 game (5/39) we find top prizes typically over $100,000, secondary prizes in the $300 to $500 range all at decent odds for a daily lotto game.
Match
Odds 1 in
All 5 of 5 winning numbers
1 in 575,757
Any 4 of 5 winning numbers
1 in 3,387
Any 3 of 5 winning numbers
1 in 103
Any 2 of 5 winning numbers
1 in 10

For a $1 wager these are GOOD odds folks. The primary reason the jackpot is this low is because very people FEW in California play Fantasy 5.
Lets look at a lottery where more of the players play the Fantasy 5 game

The Florida Lottery Fantasy 5 game (5/36) is played daily, has better odds, and larger prizes than the California Lottery game. It also features a “roll down” where if the jackpot isn’t won, the money is divided and placed into secondary prizes! The Florida Lottery typically has jackpot winners on 90% of the drawings. That’s putting a lot of cash back in the hands of players.

Prize Level

Estimated Prize
Estimated Prize
if no top-prize winner
Odds of Winning
5-of-5
$200,000
Roll Down
1:376,992
4-of-5
$100
$555
(maximum)
1:2,432.21
3-of-5
$10
$20
1:81.07
2-of-5
Free Ticket
Free Ticket
1:8.39

The New Jersey Lottery features the Jersey Cash 5 game (5/40) played daily with prizes similar to Florida’s game but no roll down feature.





Match

PrizeOdds of WinningPrize
5 out of 5
Jackpot
1 : 658,008
$200,000 avg
4 out of 5
Second
1 : 3,760
$500 avg
3 out of 5
Third
1 : 111
$11 avg
These games are the best lottery games for winning large prizes in the hundreds of thousand of dollars, with the best odds. Best of all they only cost $1 a play!

Free Drinks at Sloppy Joe's in Key West?

If you won the lotto would you head to the nearest bar and buy everyone a round? I haven’t heard of anyone doing this recently but a Florida Lotto ticket sold in Key West was the only one to match all six numbers in last Saturday night’s drawing, and is worth $17 million. Saturday’s Florida Lotto numbers were 8, 21, 26, 27, 30 and 40. The winning ticket was sold at the Publix supermarket at 3316 N. Roosevelt Blvd, Key West, FL.

The winner is now faced with a ten (10) hour drive to claim their prize. Never mind that the winner will drive right by the Miami Florida Lottery office about 2 hours into their trip. They must go to the state capital to claim the prize. The rule, posted on the Florida Lottery Website states:
“…All other prizes greater than $250,000 must be claimed at Florida Lottery headquarters in Tallahassee.”

This is an archaic, useless rule. The is no security or validation reason the prize could not be claimed in Miami. The ONLY reason the winner must drive 640 miles to the Florida Lottery HQ is so the lottery can arrange a press conference to parade the winners before the media. Maybe the Florida Lottery should pack up and travel to Miami for their press conference.

Time for the Florida Lottery to join the digital age and stop inconveniencing their winners.

It's a Gas, Gas, Gas! Lottery Winners Accidentally Blow Up House

Maybe we should file this one under “Stupid is as Stupid does”. Authorities say two Wichita Kansas brothers accidentally blew up their house after celebrating a $75,000 winning Kansas lottery ticket by purchasing marijuana and meth.

Wichita police Sgt. Bruce Watts said one of the brothers was taken to a hospital and the other to jail after Friday’s explosion. The Wichita Eagle reported that the injured 27-year-old brother is in serious but stable condition with second-degree burns on his hands, arms and chest.

Watts said the explosion happened after one of the brothers went to the kitchen to refuel the butane torches they planned to use to light their bongs. The brother emptied a couple large cans of butane lighter fluid, leaking butane into the air. Eventually, butane vapor reached the pilot light in the furnace, causing the blast.

I would imagine they had the Rolling Stones “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” playing on the stereo.
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No one won Powerball last night and Mega Millions rolled on Friday so here’s the latest multi-state lottery jackpots:

POWERBALL
02/20/2013
$70,000,000 est
Cash Option:$43,800,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/19/2013
$26,000,000 est
Cash Option:$19,000,000

Gibbs Has Rules - Followup

As I reported earlier, a wheelchair-bound Virginia man had his lottery winnings stolen last week, but today he says he feels richer in more ways than one.

According to WVEC, Kenneth Jones' misfortune touched many people and Monday he was surprised with a check for $500. Amy Hines delivered the check on behalf of a group called "Nawty Dawg Big Heart." Hines created the group, which has over 7000 facebook fans, some of whom donated money when they read about Jones' story.

"The group wanted to promote Jones' act of kindness and let him know that we wanted to celebrate what he did before all of the bad things happened," said Hines.

When Jones won $500 from the lottery, he gave two cashiers at Mo's Convenience Store of Newport News, VA, $50 each. He then gave $5 to a woman short on cash and spent $20 on more lottery tickets. On his way home, somebody stole the rest of his winnings.

Still my rule applies, ” When you win, keep your mouth shut!”

Valentine's Surprise -VA couple claim $217 Million Powerball Jackpot

When Dave Honeywell returned to Richmond International Airport from a business trip,he walked past the Virginia Lottery’s two Lottery Express machines in the atrium. Above them,he saw a banner proclaiming that a jackpot-winning ticket had been bought there. The Fredericksburg man smiled to himself and kept walking. The winning ticket was in his pocket.

Mr. Honeywell matched all six numbers in the February 6 Powerball drawing to win the $217 million jackpot. The winning numbers were 5-27-36-38-41 and Powerball number 12. He bought the ticket a few days earlier,as he was leaving on the business trip. He used Easy Pick,allowing the computer to randomly select the numbers on his ticket.

The next morning,as he prepared for a meeting in Denver,he checked the winning numbers on the Lottery’s website and immediately called his wife,Nancy. “I think my heart has started beating again,” he said.

“I thought he might be having a heart attack,” she later told Lottery officials.

On February 14,the Honeywells returned to the spot where the winning ticket was bought to receive their check from Virginia Lottery Executive Director Paula Otto. They had a choice of taking the full jackpot in 30 annual payments or a one-time cash option of $136.4 million before taxes. They chose the cash option.

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The current multi-state lottery jackpots remain low. Check out your lower odds state lotto game and put your money there.

POWERBALL
02/16/2013
$60,000,000 est
Cash Option:$37,700,000

MEGA MILLIONS
02/15/2013
$20,000,000 est
Cash Option:$14,600,000

Top Prize Taxes paid ? Don't count on it !

Some lotteries offer prizes that are touted to be “Taxes Paid”. Wonderful! Who want’s to worry about paying taxes?
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Wayne Sheets, of Thomasville GA, won $3 million playing the instant game $3,000,000 Taxes Paid. He purchased the ticket at Flash Foods in Thomasville. The gardener says he already has plans for the money growing organic vegetables and raising free range turkeys and chickens for his personal use.

Mr. Sheets played a $20 scratch game and really got lucky as the odds of winning the top prize are 1 in 2,040,000. According to the Georgia Lottery the Top Prize of $4,347,827 includes federal income tax of 25% ($1,086,957) and state income tax of 6% ($260,870) for a projected net prize of $3,000,000, paid in one lump sum.

So what are the odds that Mr. Sheets really didn’t win his prize “Taxes Paid”? Oh, I’d say 1 in 1. As noted above, the Georgia Lottery pays federal income taxes at 25%, which is the MINIMUM the IRS requires for withholding on gambling prizes. Looking at the 2013 IRS income tax rates we find:

Rate
Single Filers
Married Joint Filers
Head of Household Filers
10%
$0 to $8,925
$0 to $17,850
$0 to $12,750
15%
$8,925 to $36,250
$17,850 to $72,500
$12,750 to $48,600
25%
$36,250 to $87,850
$72,500 to $146,400
$48,600 to $125,450
28%
$87,850 to $183,250
$146,400 to $223,050
$125,450 to $203,150
33%
$183,250 to $398,350
$223,050 to $398,350
$203,150 to $398,350
35%
$398,350 to $400,000
$398,350 to $450,000
$398,350 to $425,000
39.6%
$400,000 and up
$450,000 and up
$425,000 and up

OUCH! There is a HUGE difference between 25% and
nearly 40% federal taxes!

Mr Sheets needs to run to his financial advisor and set aside a huge chunk of his winning for additional taxes. Maybe growing organic vegetables and raising free range turkeys is some type of tax shelter?

I’ll address this and other taxing situations in my forthcoming book, “Read This BEFORE You Win”.

PS: Shame on the Georgia Lottery for what is blatant false advertising by calling this game “Taxes Paid” when in no case could the money they set aside for taxes ever cover the Federal income tax on the prize.

Don't be stupid, Cupid!

Today is February 13th. A day when lots of guys realize that, “Crap! Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day.”
Candy? Card? Roses? Or you could be a true romantic and get her a lottery ticket. (Guys, this only works if the ticket wins)
So while you rush to get that gift, go ahead and put a lottery ticket in the card. I’d suggest one of the popular “For Life” instant scratch games that pay a set amount per week for life. It seems that most lotteries offer them now. The Illinois Lottery just introduced an entire instant product line like this called “The Good Life” with tickets from $1 to $10 in price.

On to the multi-state lottery jackpots. They are still low but continue to roll and grow.

POWERBALL
02/13/2013
$50,000,000 est
Cash Option:$31,400,000
MEGA MILLIONS
02/15/2013
$20,000,000 est
Cash Option:$14,600,000

Lotto Winnings might go "Up In Smoke"

According to the Toronto Sun, Robert Erb, a marijuana advocate from Terrace, B.C., became $25 million richer after winning the Lotto Max jackpot on Nov. 2, 2012.
Now, the 60-year-old seasonal construction worker is pledging $500,000 towards the fight to decriminalize marijuana in Canada.
"The biggest social injustice I've seen in all my entire lifetime is the criminalization and prohibition of marijuana," Erb told CTV British Columbia.
Erb told the station he is pledging up to $500,000 to match donations made to Sensible B.C. over the coming months.

I trust he will also have enough money to purchase every Cheech & Chong movie available and a lifetime supply of Doritos.

Not excited about small Powerball and Mega Millions jackpots? Look to your state lotto game.

Yawn. Both the Powerball and Mega Millions jackpots are back close their minimum amounts. You’re not excited to play the lotto? Look to your state specific lotto games.
While Powerball and Mega Millions have those sexy large jackpots, they also carry extremely long odds of winning.
Many state lotto jackpots are sizable and have far better odds of winning…in many cases 10 to 20 time better odds of winning than the big multi-state games.
As of this writing here’s a sample of state lottery jackpots:


Arizona’s “The Pick” - $3.4 Million
California’s Super Lotto - $21 Million
Florida Lotto - $16 Million
Indiana’s Hoosier Lotto - $9 Million
New York Lotto - $17.7 Million
Texas Lotto - $14 Million
Ohio Classic Lotto - $27.9 Million

You have far better odds of winning one of these jackpots than the multi-state games. Play your state lotto!

Dog-Gone It! These guys had all the luck!

A group of University of Utah workers will split $1 million in lottery winnings thanks to a set of keys left in a truck and an ornery little dog named "Stella."

According to AP news reports, after playing the same numbers every month for 13 years the group of 33 workers who work on heating and cooling university buildings struck big money in the Idaho Lottery when Steve Hughes left his truck running to keep his dog "Stella" warm while he went inside to a gas station near Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, on Jan. 6. Since Utah has no lottery ( a Mormon thing undoubtedly) they play in Idaho.

When he came back to his truck, his miniature pincher had locked him out by hitting her paw on the manual lock. Hughes, 29, planned to buy the ticket elsewhere, but instead he had his girlfriend bought it at the gas station while he tried to get into the truck.

Finally Stella to put her paws on the electronic window opener, allowing Hughes to get in the truck.

That delay which was a real pain turned into luck when the group discovered Wednesday night that they had won second prize worth a cool $1 Million in the Idaho Powerball game.

I hope the players had a good but simple Group Play agreement. I’ll be telling you how to do it right in my soon-to-be-released booklet titled, “Avoiding Lawsuits: A Guide to Group Lottery Play”

Check this site soon for all the details.

Gibbs on NCIS has rules. So do I

On the CBS TV show, Leroy Jethro Gibbs has rules that every team member can quote.

In my forthcoming book, “Read This BEFORE You Win” I also have rules. Rule #1 is, “Keep your mouth shut. Tell no one, especially in public.”

This guy could have used my book. You can use my book. It should be out in a couple of months. Look for it on this website. Anyhow, here’s the story of one unlucky player:

A 62-year-old man, who uses a motorized wheelchair, won $500 in the Virginia Lottery last Friday, only to have most of it stolen minutes later by a thief, WTKR reports.

Robert Jones of Newport News, Va., celebrated his good fortune in the Virginia Lottery Pick 3 by giving $50 apiece to the clerks at the store where he cashed the ticket, according to WTKR. He says the would-be robber was also in the store at the time and followed him out.

Next thing Jones knew, the suspect approached him as he was going home and demanded a share as well, he said to the station. When Jones refused, the thief dug his hand into Jones' jacket pocket and snagged the money, he said.

To reiterate, KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT!

Powerball Won - FL Lottery new scratch games

Powerball Won - New Instant Scratch games for the FL Lottery

POWERBALL JACKPOT WON

The Wednesday, February 6th Powerball jackpot was won at an estimated $217.2 million and there was one grand prize winning ticket sold in the Richmond Virginia area.
The jackpot returns at its guaranteed $40 Million for the next draw on Saturday 2/9/2013. The winning Powerball numbers: White Balls: 05 27 36 38 41, Powerball: 12.
There were six tickets that won the $1 Million Match 5 prize. They were from AZ; CT; IL; KY; and NY-2. There was one ticket that added the Power Play to win $2 million. It was from the State of RI.

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FLORIDA RELAUNCHES FOR LIFE INSTANT SCRATCH GAMES

Florida Lottery players will have the chance to win up to $5,000 A WEEK FOR LIFE with the new LIFE Family of Scratch-Off games. With tickets ranging from $1 to $10, there's something for everyone.
The $10 game, $5,000 A WEEK FOR LIFE, offers more than $89 million in prizes, including two top prizes of $5,000 a week for life, guaranteed for 20 years. This game features the largest top prize of any $10 Florida Lottery Scratch-Off game! The overall odds of winning are one in 3.34
The $5 game, $2,500 A WEEK FOR LIFE, offers more than $63 million in prizes, including four top prizes of $2,500 a week for life. The overall odds of winning are one in 4.02.
The $2 game, $1,000 A WEEK FOR LIFE, offers more than $42 million in prizes, including eight top prizes of $1,000 a week for life. The overall odds of winning are one in 4.46.
The $1 game, $500 A WEEK FOR LIFE, offers more than $18 million in prizes, including six top prizes of $500 a week for life. The overall odds of winning are 1 in 4.97.
I'll point the the odds of winning the top prize are MUCH higher that on other games of the same price.
On the Five Dollar $2,500 a Week for Life game the odds of winning the top prize are an astronomical 1-in-4,500,000
The previous Five Dollar Lucky $2,500 a Week for Life game had slightly lower odds at 1-in-4,020,000.
For comparison the Five Dollar Holiday Magic game had relatively low odds of winning the $250,000 top prize of 1-in-960,000