7 Time Lotto Winner Shares His Secrets

Most people dream of winning the lottery once in their lifetime, but Richard Lustig dreams bigger. He’s a seven-time lottery grand prize winner, and has some advice for other hopeful winners out there – “luck has nothing to do with it.” Lustig suggests first picking a set of numbers, then following these two rules, “One, never ever change any of those numbers and number two, never miss a draw in the game that you’re playing.” While Lustig makes sure to play the lottery frequently, he’s quick to offer a word of caution, “Figure out what you can afford and stay in your budget. Yes, you should play, because if you don’t play, you’re not going to win, but stay within budget.” That’s right Richard, we all know you have to be in it to win it!

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7 Seconds Cost Canada Man $27 Million

Get ready to cringe! Late in January, Canada’s Supreme Court denied an appeal hearing to a Quebec man who missed a $27 million dollar jackpot by…seven seconds! In 2008, Joel Ifergan purchased two tickets for a lottery drawing hoping to score a lucky win. Indeed the second ticket Joel bought turned out to be a winner, leading him to believe he was about to be a millionaire 27 times over. Upon closer inspection, it turned out that Joel’s second ticket was printed out seven seconds after the drawing deadline. He has spent the last seven years and $100,000 in legal fees trying to get the decision reversed. The Canadian Supreme Court ruling on January 29 marks the end of the line for Joel and his hopes of seeing the $27 million winnings. Joel told reporters, “I’m really disappointed in the decision, and it’s not because it’s about the money. Had those tickets been bought anywhere else in Canada, I would have been a millionaire seven years ago.” Let this be a cautionary lesson to lotto players everywhere – get your bets in on time!

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‘Regular Joe’ Joins Millionaire’s Club

Jesus Davila’s wishes may be modest, but his next check certainly isn’t. As the sole winner of the January 16th Illinois state lottery drawing, Jesus will take home $127 million in a lump sum payment. What is he planning for his first new purchase? “I would like to a buy a big house with a really big lawn … and a riding lawn mower” he said earlier this week. Jesus also plans to share some of the money with his four children and four grandchildren. At an official press conference to announce his winning, Jesus reminded lottery players everywhere, “You can’t win if you don’t play. I’m just a regular Joe, and I played.”

First Powerball Winner Comes Forward

“I’m just grateful for this moment” said North Carolina resident Marie Holmes when interviewed by reporters about her Powerball win earlier this month. She is the first of three lucky winners to publicly come forward, and opted to take a lump sum payment of $127 million. She recalled the moment she realized her ticket was a winner, “I just happened to check Facebook and my friend had a post up with the numbers on it so I looked at the numbers and I had my numbers in my hand and I was like these are the same numbers on my ticket, then I started screaming and stuff and my kids ran away from me and said I scared them.” Marie’s four children will certainly benefit most from her enormous winnings, the 5th largest in Powerball history. According to Marie, “This is going to make a huge difference for them. They’re going to be able to go to school, not have to worry about paying for it. They’re going to be able to live a comfortable life and not worry about struggling.” In addition to providing for her family, Marie also plans donate some of her winnings to the local church and charities.

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Big Win on a Little Scratch Off

A Michigan woman and mother of three got a big return on her $10 scratch off ticket after matching enough numbers to win $250,000. While the winning woman prefers to remain anonymous, the store owner where she purchased the ticket was happy to report, “It was really exciting to watch their expressions. It’s nice to see someone local who won it.” Vick Rathaur has owned the small store, JNK Corners, for a number of years and definitely feels the effects of selling the lucky scratch off, “It’s kind of exciting,” he said, “I’m very happy to be selling more winning tickets. I think people are going to buy more tickets here thinking maybe this store is lucky.”

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Lottery Winners Get Involved In Sports

Lottery Winners Get Involved In Sports

When dreaming of winning the lottery, most people think of buying a mansion to live in, or a coastal view cottage as vacation home, or a brand new sporty Mercedes and so on.

You will almost never hear about lotto fans who dream of hitting the jackpot in order to invest in their favorite sports club. You will hear them talking about donating to charity, but does this include the local gym?

Although it is not part of the big “winning the lottery dream”, these kind of things do happen!

The lucky Brits who won the EuroMillions jackpot in July 2011 have often made the headlines because of their extravagant spending, but also for their charitable donations. A football fan, Mr. Weir redirected a part of his sudden fortune towards the world of sports. In June 2012, he donated £750,000 to his local football team, Largs Thistle, to help them pay the bills and upgrade their facilities. A year later, he sponsored the foundation of Partick Thistle youth academy, aimed at opening the doors of professional football for 120 young players, while providing the necessary facilities to play football and to train to up to 1000 young people.

The 63-year-old lucky Norwegian, Yngvar Borgesen from Skien, won the 13.5 million € EuroJackpot prize in May last year – the largest lottery prize ever in Norwegian history. Ever since he came forward and claimed his prize, he declared he wanted to do something for the local community. Borgesen decided to invest in the local football club Odds Ballklubb and, foremost in their young defender Fredrik Semb Berge, who had made his senior international debut in a game against South Africa, and was at risk of being sold because of financial difficulties.  The player continued to play for the club where his father had previously played and, soon after Borgesen’s donation, he took Norway to the semifinals of the UEFA European Under-21 Championship! Read more about his decision here.

Gareth and Catherine Bull said the sudden £40 million did not really changed their lives. They even joke saying they were boring before, and continue to be boring even if they have the status of millionaires now. However, some things did change: they had the freedom to quit their jobs and can now spend a great deal of their time volunteering at the local sports club, Debdale Park Sports & Recreational Club, where their kids play football.

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Looking to win the EuroMillions? Move to Ireland.

Ireland may be the luckiest place to be currently if you want to win the EuroMillions lottery due to the high number of recent winners.

This week there were two winners of the EuroMillions Plus top prize. Both winning tickets were sold in Ireland – Dublin and the Midlands.

Each of the lucky pair are now €500,000 richer after their lucky numbers were chosen – 5, 20, 30, 39 and 41.

There was no winner of the EuroMillions main jackpot of €58,852,109.

Last month a lucky Corkman scooped €500,000 in the Plus draw after flying back to Ireland following months of working abroad.

To see which countries have been the luckiest historically, see the table below:

Country: Jackpot Winners: Percentage of Total
Jackpot Winners:
France 76 24.9%
Spain 69 22.6%
Portugal 54 17.7%
UK 47 15.4%
Belgium 24 7.9%
Switzerland 14 4.6%
Austria 12 3.9%
Ireland 7 2.3%
Luxembourg 2 0.7%
Total: 305 100%
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What Would You Do if You Won the Lottery?

Why we play lotteries. And why it’s a good idea if done right.

Do you ever dream about winning the lottery?

Sure you’ll find people who think that buying lottery tickets is among the silliest decisions a person could make. And it is true that the odds of winning anything substantial are very much stacked against you.

There is no doubt that people should not spend money on lottery tickets that they can’t afford to lose. If you have a gambling problem, or are financially destitute, it is a terrible idea. And for anyone to stake his or her financial future on lottery tickets is beyond foolish.

But – and this is the important part – there are a couple of dimensions that these tut-tutted warnings miss, perhaps fueled by a class divide between those who commonly buy lottery tickets and those who choose to throw away money on other things like expensive wine or mansions.

As long as one thinks about the purchase of lottery tickets the right way — again, purely a consumption good, not an investment — it can be a completely rational decision. The biggest and most generally applicable reason buying lottery tickets is a non-terrible idea is this: It is fun to imagine one’s future after arriving at vast wealth.

Who doesn’t daydream about what sorts of houses and cars and airplanes one would buy with the half-billion-dollar Powerball grand prize? (It’s more like around $340 million in cash value terms; the larger number is if the prize is taken as an annual payment.)

Fantasizing about what you would do if you suddenly encountered great wealth is fun, and it is more fun if there is some chance, however minuscule, that it could happen. The $2 price for a ticket is a relatively small one to pay for the enjoyment of thinking through how you might organize your life differently if you had all those millions.

Mom-of-four, 26, who 'quit her McDonald's job to care for disabled child' is one of three $564.1m Powerball winners

What a story! Mom with disabled child is one of three Powerball winners

This is why we play sweepstakes and lotteries

Marie Holmes, 26, from Shallotte, North Carolina, is one of three winners for the recent Powerball $564.1 million prize, the fifth largest ever in America.

When the mother of four realized she was in possession of a winning ticket, she began screaming with such excitement that she scared her children, one of whom has cerebral palsy.

To her children who were asking what was wrong, she proclaimed, “We don’t have to struggle anymore! You don’t have to worry about debt. You can go to college, all on me. You don’t have to worry about nothing!’

She added that the money, “Is all for them.”

Marie recently work at a local McDonald’s before quitting to take care of her children full time.

She said she purchased her winning ticket after seeing how large the jackpot had gotten in the recent weeks.

How does she plan to spend her lottery winnings?

She is going to buy a house and set up college funds for her children, though the first thing she is going to do is tithe to the church, according to WECT.

When asked whether she was going to splurge on luxury goods like a car, Marie explained ‘I’m going to get everything I’ve ever wanted,’ but didn’t have any particular items in mind.

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Two $1 million scratch-off lottery winners at Jersey City store

Two $1 million scratch-off lottery winners at Jersey City store

If you live or travel anywhere near Jersey City in the state of New Jersey, USA, you have to stop into M-S Grocery INC, a convenience store on Montgomery Street.

It is the luckiest store on the East Coast.

Last January, a customer purchased a Merry Millions scratch-off ticket there and won the $1 million grand prize. And just last Friday, another customer scratched off a $20 Diamond Spectacular ticket worth a cool million bucks.

Employee Rehan Khan said the store has always been considered lucky and with two $1 million winners, more people have been stopping by with a couple dollars and a dream.

“Since the last winning ticket, the number of scratch-offs being sold has kept growing and growing and growing,” Rehan said.

On a typical Friday in February, you’ll find the store filled with customers willing to brave the icy chill to come in and buy themselves some hope.

Besides the grand winners, the store owners, cousins Mohammad Riaz Khan and Mohammad Bashir Khan, say they’ve had plenty of $500 and $1,000 winners over the years.

“This is the luckiest store in Jersey City,” said John Barr, a customer for at least 20 years, as he grinned and scratched off the lottery tickets in his hands. “I’ve won $500 here at least 4 times.”

Jonthan Perez, another regular at the store who says he’s won close to $15,000, says somehow the odds are better at M-S Grocery.

“The most I’ve won in another store was $1.50,” he said.

Rehan himself enjoys seeing people win, especially when it’s big money.

Even if you’re not near Jersey City, you can still play for a chance to win millions – right here on this site for FREE!

7 tips for winning the lottery that really work

There is a lot of confusion, misinformation and many half-truths online about how to increase your chances to win the lottery. Some even doubt whether it is possible to increase your chances at all.

That doesn’t mean that there’s no way of increasing your odds of winning, though. Here are some common-sense tips that really will help you win the lottery.

1. Improve your odds of winning the lottery by playing the right lotteries

People talk about winning the lottery as if it were just one game. But every state has a selection of lottery games with different odds of winning. Read the odds before you spend your money to ensure you’re maximizing your chances of winning.

Remember that lottery games like Powerball and MegaMillions are national lotteries, so they have a much broader entry pool. State lotteries, where you have to be physically present to purchase a ticket, usually have better odds.

2. Buy scratch-offs and other lottery games with smaller payouts

A typical scratch-offs has odds between 1:5 and 1:2.5.

Example: Taking a look at local numbers requested from the South Carolina Education Lottery, you have a better chance of winning with scratch-offs. Since 2009, there have been 170 jackpot winners in seven counties. Of those winners, 127 of those were scratch-off winners.

Ask the clerk which ones have been bought the most and returned the most winners. Pick a game that has seen mostly losses – that way, a win should be coming up. If the odds are 1:5, purchasing 5 cards should allot you 1 winner.

3. Purchase more than one ticket for a single lottery game

The more tickets purchased will increase your odds of winning. Consider that an average state lottery has jackpot odds of about 100,000,000 to 1, the “Powerball” lottery has jackpot odds of about 175,000,000 to 1. Holding fifty tickets would improve your odds to 100,000,000 to 50.

Can’t afford 50 tickets yourself? Check out tip number 4

4. Get more entries without spending more money by joining lottery pools

The easiest way to boost your odds of winning lotteries is simply to buy more tickets. But of course, that costs money, and even if you invest a lot of money in tickets, your odds of winning are still poor.

But lottery pools give you the opportunity to improve your odds without spending more money. Join your office lottery pool or start one of your own to get better chances of winning.

5. Increase your chances of winning the lottery with second-chance games

Find and play lottery games that include second-chance drawings, meaning even if you don’t win big, you still have a chance to win something.

6. Pick numbers over 31 and avoid common lucky numbers or patterns

Whenever you choose your lottery numbers you should always pick numbers over 31. The reasoning behind this is simple. People tend to pick numbers based on “lucky dates” like birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions.

You share big lottery prizes with all of the other winners which can cut your share down in a hurry if you choose popular numbers. If 10 people all guess the correct numbers for a $10,000,000 jackpot everyone is walking away with $1,000,000.

Nothing to sneeze at, but if 1 person gets the winning numbers by themselves than that one person takes the whole $10 million. And since all numbers have an equal chance of being drawn, as long as you can put your superstitions behind you then you have just as good of a chance to win with unpopular numbers as you do with good old lucky 7! The most common lucky numbers which you should avoid are 1, 3, 4, 7, 9 and 11. Also avoid common patterns, particularly straight lines across a lottery ticket as there are a surprising number of lazy players who go for 1,2,3,4, and 5.

If you want to get really technical you can try a random number generator. There are lots of these available over the web and while they won’t increase your chances of winning as some websites bizarrely claim, they will give you the best chance of not choosing the same numbers as other players.

7. Play FreeLotto

Here’s a game with odds similar to state lotteries and you can play for free! No catch. No costs. Just fun! And a chance to win millions!

Photo by Insulinde

Man Doubles His Luck to Win Same Lottery Twice

Man Doubles His Luck to Win Same Lottery Twice

It’s truly hard to believe: a man accidentally won the same lottery twice for a payout of $546,000.

Kenneth J. Stokes, of Norwood, Mass., is a lottery season ticket holder, which automatically enters him into every drawing of a certain lottery with specific, pre-set numbers of his choosing.

Forgetting that his family had gifted him a season pass to the Massachusetts State Lottery Lucky for Life drawing with their lucky numbers, Stokes bought a second ticket with the exact same numbers on Monday.

Then, he got a fateful call from the lotto officials.

“The representative called the individual who was the owner of the season ticket and informed him of that and then he was obviously elated to find out that he had won on that ticket,” Massachusetts State Lottery director of communications Christian Teja told ABC News. “They hung up and he realized that he had purchased the same ticket on his own for that same drawing. During the phone call when they had spoken, the representative had mentioned there was another winner form Norwood. He called back and it all came together when he was like, ‘I’m that guy in Norwood.’”

Stokes brought in his winning tickets on Thursday morning to collect his prize. He had won $25,000 a year for up to 20 years, which equals a $500,000 maximum. Stokes opted for a one-time cash option payment, which brought the prize down to $390,000 pre-tax, or $273,000 after tax. For Stokes, however, his winnings were doubled to $546,000.

The odds of Stokes winning twice in one drawing are one in 985,517. He plans to use the winnings to pay for his son’s college tuition and his daughter’s remaining car payments, as well as take his family on a vacation.

“I saw him yesterday. He was certainly in a good mood with a big smile on his face, as you can imagine,” Teja said. “He’s still somewhat in disbelief but very appreciative of his good fortune.”

Odds of winning the lottery

Odds of winning the lottery

Many people have their own superstitious traditions they follow in hopes to bring them more luck, but is there actually a way to improve your chance of winning?

According to the Powerball website, powerball.com, buying more tickets will obviously help your chances, but the odds are still high.

A secret revealed on the website is that there are 35 numbers in Powerball’s second drum, so if a group buys 35 tickets, each with a unique red Powerball number, then you are guaranteed to at least win the $4 prize.

If you are superstitious, you may want to have the computer pick your numbers. About 70 to 80 percent of winners are computer picks.

The overall odds of winning the grand prize are 1 in 175,223,520.

If you are looking to just get some kind of winning prize, the odds are 1 in 31.85.

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Here’s what to do if you win the lottery

What to do if you win the lottery

If you should ever be so lucky as to win a major prize in a lottery, there are some things you need to know about:

1) Read the rules on the ticket and on the lottery’s website. Sign your name on the back of the ticket, unless the rules forbid it. Then make a copy of it and put it in a safe deposit box. Don’t feel compelled to tell the world just yet. Try to refrain from telling anyone beyond your immediate family. You can take your time before contacting the lottery authorities, but be aware that ticket expiration periods vary from state to state, from 90 days to one year. The back of your ticket will likely detail the expiration period for your state.

2) Assemble your team. You need to interview estate attorneys, accountants and financial advisers. An important caveat: Don’t hire only one money manager. You can assemble anywhere from three to six with different areas of expertise.

3) Determine whether you will accept the payout as a lump sum or in installments. At this point, the lump sum for the $500 million prize is $327 million before federal taxes are applied and $245.2 million after-tax. Conversely, you could choose to receive annual payments over 29 years, which would amount to $16.6 million a year pre-tax and $12.5 million after taxes. This does not include state or city taxes, which would further reduce your take. You have 60 days, after you claim your ticket, to make the decision.

You mostly hear about winners taking the lump sum, because they want to control the entire amount of money. This year, there could be a tax edge in taking the lump sum, since odds are good that taxes will rise next year.

The big problem with a lump sum is that winners often end up blowing the entire amount doing dumb things. Don McNay, author of the book “Son of a Son of a Gambler: Winners, Losers and What to Do When You Win the Lottery,” says nine out of 10 winners go through their money in five years or less. “It’s too much, too fast,” he says. “Nobody is around them putting the brakes on the situation.”

The stream of income ensures that you won’t blow through your entire jackpot. That said, there’s a major caveat to going this route — if you die before collecting the entire amount, the remainder of your winnings may or may not pass to your heirs. This depends on the rules of the individual lottery and the state where you win.

4) Determine the legal structure of your investment holdings. Your attorney will help determine whether you should utilize trusts, limited liability companies or even corporations. Depending on your state of domicile, each may have advantages and disadvantages in terms of taxation, as well as privacy.

That said, it’s fine to splurge a little. The key is to not go crazy — initially, keep it under $100,000. That means don’t buy a new house or a Ferrari for a while, but do take your family on a fabulous vacation. And when you return, remember that you have a new job: Responsibly managing your money.

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'Life-Changing Event': Powerball Winners Told to 'Take Your Time'

Texas Lottery Powerball winner told to ‘Take Your Time’

While lottery officials in North Carolina and Texas said they’re thrilled that residents of their states beat 175 million-to-1 odds to share the fifth-biggest U.S. jackpot ever, they offered this advice Thursday: Keep the ticket safe, and take your time.

The Multi-State Lottery Association, which administers Powerball, said the third winning ticket was sold Wednesday in Puerto Rico. The winners have 180 days to come forward to claim their prizes, worth $127 million as a lump sum before taxes.

“Personally, I hope this winner takes that time to get their financial house in order,” said Gary Grief, executive director of the Texas Lottery Commission. He said the winner or winners — who bought the ticket in Princeton, near McKinney, and haven’t been identified — are already seeking legal and financial advice.

Alice Garland, executive director of the N.C. Education Lottery, said winners are dealing with “a life-changing event.” And while “we look forward to meeting the jackpot winner,” she said, “the most important thing for the winner to do today is sign the back of the ticket and secure it in a safe place.”

The winner or winners in North Carolina, who also weren’t identified, bought the winning ticket at a Scotchman convenience store in the town of Shallotte in Brunswick County, about 13 miles north of the South Carolina border.