One lucky Powerball player will become a billionaire in the near future after a single ticket was found to have won the record rollover jackpot on Tuesday. The winner, who bought the ticket in Los Angeles County, California, remained unnamed at the time of going to press, but can accept their prize as a single $997.6million lump sum or in 29 equal annual amounts of more than $70million.
The Powerball jackpot had been arrived at after a string of 40 consecutive drawings without a winner. It dwarfs the previous record of $1.59billion which was divided among three winning tickets and is, overall, a world-record win for a lottery grand prize.
For all that it matters now that the jackpot has been won, the lucky numbers were 10, 33, 41, 47, 56 and the Red Powerball was 10. To add drama to the mix, the draw was delayed by more than ten hours due to a difficulty in processing sales in one of the participating state lottery headquarters, later revealed to be Minnesota. Instead of watching the Monday night prime time draw, it’s entirely possible the winning ticket holder was asleep when the draw was made on Tuesday morning – it was before 6 am Pacific Time – and now they can sleep in pretty much every morning for the rest of their life.
What we know so far about the winner is very little. We know that they bought the winning ticket at Joe’s Service Center in Altadena, and the owner of the facility says that most of his customers are local, so there’s a fair chance the winner hails from the nearby area. Owner Joe Chahayed, as the seller of the winning ticket, also benefits from a $1million lump sum, which is not quite as life-changing as the jackpot amount, but still a handy chunk of cash.
While we don’t know the winner’s identity, California state law dictates that the winner’s name must be made public. No other details are required to be revealed, but for people living in the area it will not be especially difficult to put two and two together, particularly if the winner turns out to be a local individual rather than someone who was just passing through.
Records show that in the case of Powerball winners where the option is given for a cash lump sum or a 29-year annuity, in almost all cases the winner picks the lump sum. However, most lottery draws do not take place after a 40-draw dry spell which means that even the yearly amount would dwarf most jackpot wins. We will likely hear whether the winner has chosen to receive nearly a billion dollars up front, or to accept an annual amount which would still equate to nearly $1.5million per week. Although some may mock if they choose to accept the lump sum it should be noted that a lot can happen in 29 years, and the average individual could easily live off the interest from such a gargantuan sum.