Remember Chris Manzi (circled) from this previous post? The print shop owner and his work buddy Willie McPherson won a whopping $14 million in a 2012 Mega Millions jackpot.
But guess what they got each at the end of the day when the check cleared? Do you think they dropped $10,000 in administration or accounting fees?
No, it was far worse...
They received a mere $3.5 million each... losing millions of hard-won dollars in a flash.
Actually Willie got $3.3 million because New York has a higher tax rate than the New Jersey-based Chris Manzi.
But regardless, the amount was a tiny percentage of the advertised jackpot prize.
In another example, the Lohse family won a $202.1 million USA Powerball jackpot last year. The lump-sum payment was $129.8 million, but after taxes and charges they were left with $90.9 million dollars. That’s a difference of over $111 million, lost!
The Lohse family don't seem too worried about losing $111 million after winning $202,100,000.
So what caused that huge drop. And could you experience it too?
Here's 3 ways your winning total could be reduced to a fraction of the advertised payout:
1. Taxes. If you live in a country or state that has taxes, you are obliged to pay them, and the lottery organisers will often take them out first before you get your hands on the prize. In the United States, lottery winnings are subject to federal and local taxes in most states. The IRS takes a 25% withholding tax from any wins over $5,000, but of course large winners will find themselves in a higher tax bracket so the tax from a larger amount can rise a lot. However there are 9 countries in which your winnings are tax-free.
2. Lump sum payouts. Many lotteries give a lesser amount if you take the prize in a lump sum instead of an annuity (payout in yearly instalments). Many winners go for the lump sum. Even though the cash advance is a lower amount, many winners prefer to have the money sitting in their bank. It allows many winners to pay off their debts and make large purchases such as houses.
3. Sharing with other players. I'm not talking about sharing with thousands of players in the game itself, but splitting your prize with a partner or family, like the Manzi and McPherson example here. Chris and Willie split their jackpot in half - even though Willie needed to borrow $20 to buy the ticket. (see a Poll on whether you would do this). Sharing the ticket will slash your total win and maybe make it less of use if the amount is low, so think twice before agreeing to a split.
So be aware of the high winning figures that lottery organisations use to draw you in, and check your options.
Read More: Don't Be Fooled By The Jackpot Figure...
Ken, i got your lifetime membership and it has been a great move because i have been winning constantly,, the biggest has been $21600 but a lot of others for $300 and same. So you see i have made it back in a month and the rest is free!! thanks for everything you do,