What to Do After Hitting the Lottery: 3 Things You Need to Know
The truth is, the odds of winning the lottery are really, really terrible. The Telegraph says there is one chance in 14 million to win one.
Even with the miniscule probability of winning, there are still a few lucky ones that manage to bag the lottery. It can be an ecstatic experience if you’re one of the few lucky ones. No one ever expects it at all.
The problem is what to do after hitting the lottery. Things can be quite overwhelming at that very moment. You suddenly realize all your dreams can come true instantly.
Before making any hasty decisions, here are three things you should do after bagging the lottery.
Keep on reading!
1. Protect Your Ticket
You’ll need your winning ticket to collect your prize. So, be sure to keep it safe. Experts recommend taking it to the bank to store in a safe deposit box.
Be sure to have several copies of the ticket with your signature on them. If you somewhat separated from your ticket, your signature will be a proof of ownership.
You can store your ticket in the deposit box as long as you want. Just don’t exceed the number of days you have to collect your prize. Most lotteries give winners up to 180 or 365 days to collect their money.
2. Get Professional Help
Your life will turn upside down the moment you know you’re the winner.
The best way to avoid making it even worse it to remain anonymous. The last thing you want is to get lots of calls, text messages, and emails from friends, long-lost family members, charities, causes, lawyers, and even people you don’t know.
Some states allow you to remain anonymous. In this case, you’ll need to work with a lottery law attorney to set up a trust or limited liability company to receive the prize. You can have your lawyer claim the money on behalf of the trust.
You’ll also need to see a tax professional before you cash the ticket. You can take the money all at once or have it paid out in installments for a specified number of years.
If you take a lump sum payment, Uncle Sam requires you to pay tax on the whole amount. With the annuity option, you only get taxed when you receive the installments.
Your tax professional will advise you on the best option depending on your current financial situation.
3. Maintain a Cool Lifestyle
Well, it’s not the time to call Lamborgini or Ferrari for an order. A luxury real estate agent or Boeing private jet salesperson shouldn’t be the first person that comes to your mind.
For the first year after claiming your prize, don’t do anything drastic, like buying a vacation home in the Maldives or quitting your job. It’s natural to celebrate, but be sure to set aside a specific amount for that. Save the big purchases later.
It may feel unusual to have lots of money but try to exercise some discipline. Also, take care of your dent problems fast if you have them. Save a percentage for retirement and set up an emergency fund.
What to Do After Winning the Lottery – Final Thoughts
Every lottery player always wishes to have the winning ticket. But the responsibility that comes with figuring out what to do after winning the lottery is something that not many people can manage.
If you win a lottery, these tips can help you maintain a normal life and enjoy your prize accordingly. Reliable legal support is also necessary, and we are here to help you.