$1.35B Mega Millions Winner to Collect a Lot Less Than That

The person, remaining anonymous, will receive roughly $500M after taxes
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 14, 2023 5:30 AM CST
Updated Feb 23, 2023 7:28 AM CST
Finally, We Have a Mega Millions Winner
People buy lottery tickets at a store just inside the California border on Friday near Primm, Nevada.   (AP Photo/John Locher)
UPDATE Feb 23, 2023 7:28 AM CST

The winner of the $1.35 billion Mega Millions jackpot has come forward to collect the prize, but their identity remains a mystery. The Maine State Lottery said Wednesday that the winner chose a lump-sum payment of $723.5 million before taxes through a limited liability company, LaKoma Island Investments LLC, allowing them to remain anonymous. "The winner is thoughtfully considering the best uses of the life-changing prize," a rep said, per the AP. To claim the full jackpot, the winner would need to accept an annuity with annual payments over 29 years. Instead, they'll receive more than $498 million after taxes—with $173.6 million going to the federal government and $51 million to the state.

Jan 14, 2023 5:30 AM CST

Maine scored its first Mega Millions jackpot—and someone beat the ill fortune of Friday the 13th—when a ticket purchased in the state matched the winning numbers for the lottery's estimated $1.35 billion grand prize. The lucky combination of numbers drawn late Friday night were: 30, 43, 45, 46, 61, and the gold Mega Ball 14. The winner, whose name isn't yet known, overcame steep odds of 1 in 302.6 million, which led to three months of drawings without a claim on the jackpot. "Congratulations to the Maine State Lottery, which has just won its first-ever Mega Millions jackpot," Pat McDonald, Ohio lottery director and lead director of the Mega Millions Consortium, said in a statement early Saturday.

The jackpot was the second largest in Mega Millions history and the fourth time the game has had a billion-dollar win. The largest Mega Millions jackpot in October 2018 was $1.53 billion, claimed by a single ticket holder in South Carolina. Friday's prosperous drawing also marked the seventh time there was a grand prize winner on Friday the 13th, a date superstitiously considered unlucky. To claim the full $1.35 billion, the winner would need to take the money in an annuity with annual payments over 29 years. Most jackpot recipients prefer the reduced but quicker cash option, which for Friday night's drawing was an estimated $724.6 million.

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The next grand prize drawing on Tuesday will drop to an estimated $20 million and a cash option of $10.7 million. Until Friday night, there'd been 25 straight drawings without a jackpot winner. There were more than 7 million winning tickets across nine prize tiers on Friday. Beyond Maine's jackpot, 14 tickets matched five white balls to claim the second-tier prize of $1 million. Four were sold in New York, two in California, and one each in Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Texas, Mega Millions said. Mega Millions is played in 45 states, as well as Washington, DC, and the US Virgin Islands.

(More Mega Millions stories.)

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