Powerball Jackpot Blasts Towards New Record
After 39 drawings without a jackpot winner, Powerball’s grand prize has reached an astronomical $1.5 billion, setting up the prospect of a historic moment on Saturday night.
The jackpot passed the $1 billion mark for only the second time earlier this week, fueling excitement everywhere in the U.S. and leading to greater ticket sales.
More than 7.2 million players picked up payouts on Wednesday evening, but the $1.2 billion top prize proved elusive and has now been bumped up to an estimated $1.50 billion for the next drawing.
It is the second-largest jackpot to have ever been offered in Powerball, and could go on to break the record if there is a late rush for tickets before Saturday night. If the jackpot rolls again, an even higher amount will be up for grabs on Monday.
The record for the biggest Powerball jackpot of all time currently stands at $1.58 billion and dates back to January 2016. Three ticket holders - John and Lisa Robinson from Munford in Tennessee, Marvin and Mae Acosta from Chino Hills in California, and David Kaltschmidt and Maureen Smith from Melbourne Beach in Florida - split the money and were each rewarded with a pre-tax total of $528 million.
Manuel Franco of Wisconsin became the largest winner on a single ticket in March 2019, banking a jackpot worth $768 million. Aged just 24 at the time, Franco had immediately quit his job as he was unable to concentrate, and planned to take a break before ‘helping out the world’.
Third on the list of big jackpots is the $758 million that was paid out to Mavis Wanczyk of Chicopee. Dubbed ‘Massachusetts Mave’, she told reporters she was ‘going to hide in bed’, having told her work she would not be going back.
Go to the Biggest Winners page to read the stories behind the rest of the top ten.
What To Do if You Win
Most big winners have spoken about the state of shock they experience when they find out they have matched all the numbers, so it is a good idea to know what you need to do as it can help you to keep calm in an extraordinary situation.
The first thing is to make sure you check the numbers after the draw so there’s no chance of missing out on your money. You can use the Powerball Checker to help you do this quickly.
If you haven’t done so already, sign the back of your ticket and keep it somewhere safe. Make sure you are aware of the claim period in your state, so you know how long you have to come forward. The deadline could be as short as 90 days after the draw (if you’re in New Mexico), or as long as a year in other locations. You need to claim your prize in the same state where the ticket was purchased.
You may wish to speak to an attorney or financial advisor first, and you then need to contact the relevant state lottery to start the claims process. The officials will talk you through what happens next, sort out the necessary paperwork and be able to provide expert advice.
There are a couple of big decisions to make as a jackpot winner. One is whether you want to take the money as a cash sum or an annuity. The cash option is always significantly lower (it is $745.9 million for Saturday’s draw), but has traditionally been more popular than the annuity.
The next decision is whether to go public or remain anonymous. Depending on where you have played, you may have no choice but to go public, as some states insist on disclosing the names of winners under ‘Right to Know’ laws, but more and more jurisdictions now allow winners to shield their identities.
If you do stay anonymous, it gives you the chance to carry on life more normally and provides a greater sense of security than if your name is in the public domain as someone who is worth a lot of money.
Once you’ve received your prize, you can start to enjoy life as a jackpot winner. You may want to buy new homes or cars for family members, donate money to charitable causes, set up a business venture or do something more extravagant.
To be in with a chance of winning, you need to pick up a ticket before the drawing at 10:59 pm ET. You can then see the results afterwards to find out if the jackpot has been won or rolled over again.
Page Last Updated: 11/3/2022 5:41:04 AM ET