When the American Powerball lottery awarded a $1.58 billion jackpot prize in January 2016, people all over the world rushed to purchase tickets, even if they had never played the lottery before. Whether they admit it or not, most people dream of winning the lottery one day. The higher the jackpot prize, the greater the hope that this will be the lottery draw when dreams come true.
Winning the lottery would be a life-changing event, no matter how big the jackpot prize. But for some reason, when the jackpots climb as high as hundreds of millions of dollars, as is often the case with Powerball or with the other exciting American lottery, Mega Millions, we are more eager than ever to try our luck.
If you happen to win the lottery, you can do anything you want with your prize money. Surprisingly, many jackpot winners end up losing everything they’ve won! There are some things you should take care not to do if you want to hold onto your winnings.
Do not forget to sign your ticket
The first piece of advice any jackpot winner will get is to sign their lottery ticket and keep it in a safe place. This will ensure that only you will receive the prize. If you win the lottery, make sure you don’t lose your ticket!
Do not tell everyone you know
You should refrain from immediately announcing your good fortune to the world as all the intense media attention will make you a target of people wanting to get their hands on a share of your money. When Mavis Wanczyk won a $758.7 million Powerball jackpot in August 2017, police issued warnings of fake accounts being created on social media promising to give out money if people would reveal their personal information. It’s best to keep your jackpot news to yourself for a while.
Do not think you can manage your finances on your own
To make sure that you won’t go bankrupt shortly after your lottery win, it would be wise to set up a team of professional advisors to help manage your newfound wealth. Dealing with a huge jackpot prize is a lot more complicated than handling a household budget. Your advisors will help you claim your winnings, deal with taxes, and plan for the future.
Do not buy everything you see
After winning the lottery you are entitled to celebrate. You can travel, buy a new house, a new car, and more. But don’t go overboard. If you start spending your money recklessly, you won’t know how to stop. The faster you spend your money, the faster it will run out.
Do not share your fortune all at once
Once your lottery win is known, long-lost relatives will come knocking on your door. You will be approached by every charity in the country. You can be charitable and give away part of your winnings, but limit your good intentions.
Do not change your lifestyle and become a high-roller
You may be tempted to give up the simple life and spend your time, and your money, as if you were a celebrity member of the jet set. Surprisingly, many lottery winners continue their lives as normal and even keep their day jobs. Although every jackpot winner is entitled to celebrate, those who don’t make drastic changes to their lifestyles end up retaining their wealth in the long run.
Do not think your money will last forever
Carefully planning your future is probably the smartest thing you can do after you win the lottery. You not only want to secure your financial situation, but you will want to ensure that your children are cared for as well. Your jackpot prize, however high it is, is a finite amount of money. You would be wise to prepare for the future and save some of your lottery winnings for a rainy day.