Mega Millions winner still hasn’t claimed $1.5 billion prize
Simpsonville, SC – November 14, 2018
Lottery officials in South Carolina said on Tuesday that the winner of the $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot has still not stepped forward even though the drawing was nearly three weeks ago.
South Carolina’s WLTX reported that the winning ticket was sold in the town of Simpsonville. The report said that the winner has 180 days to step forward—in this case until April 21.
The numbers drawn on October 23 were 5, 28, 62, 65, 70 and Mega Ball 5. The KC Mart at 303 Lee Vaughn Road in Simpsonville sold the winning ticket, defying the 1 in 302.5 million odds to win the near-record prize.
The winner would only become an actual billionaire by taking the prize in annual installments over three decades and hanging on to the bulk of the money. The lucky person can also take a $877.8 million lump-sum cash payment, which most winners choose to receive.
South Carolina allows lottery winners to remain anonymous after conducting a thorough investigation to confirm their identity, lottery Chief Operating Officer Tony Cooper said.
"Our message to the $1.5 BILLION #Mega Millions jackpot winner: Sign the back of the ticket, place the ticket in a safe location, speak with a trusted advisor and CALL THE LOTTERY at 1-866-736-9819. Take a deep breath and enjoy the moment!" the South Carolina Education Lottery tweeted at the time.
One Twitter user had a suggestion about what to do with the money in the event the winner never steps forward: “Why doesn’t the gov’t just pick 25k lotto winners 1.5B/26K=$60K each and save itself the hassle?”
Experts support the winner. They argue that in such cases it really is not worth the rush to pick up the winnings. They advise you to think in advance about what you will spend it on or even hire special planners who will help you plan.