Winning the lottery sounds great, but having a lot of money is both a blessing and a curse. Was your name revealed publicly? If the answer is yes, the odds are you will be hearing from your family, friends, and every other person you know (or don’t know).
The only way to get peace of mind is to ensure you remain anonymous. While your anonymity might vary depending on the applicable laws, there are ways to stay under the radar after winning the lottery. Here is a detailed guide on what you should do if you win a jackpot, and don’t want to tell anyone!
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- How Can You Remain Anonymous After Winning the Lottery?
- The Right to Remain Anonymous: Lottery Laws by Country
- 19 States Where Lottery Winners Can Legally Remain Anonymous After Winning the Lottery
- A Woman Filed a Lawsuit Because She Wanted to Stay Anonymous
- How to Use a Trust to Remain Anonymous After a Lottery Win
- How Does a Blind Trust Work for Lottery Winners?
- What Countries Allow You to Claim Lottery Winnings Through a Trust?
- Final Thoughts
How Can You Remain Anonymous After Winning the Lottery?
Perhaps you read expert tips on winning the lottery, or you had an enormous amount of luck (which is always needed in these games). Either way, you won a jackpot, and we congratulate you. While you should find some time to celebrate, this is also a moment for big decisions.
Check out these ten crucial tips on what to do after winning a lottery jackpot.
Don’t Spread the Good News Yet
Winning the lottery is undoubtedly a life-changing experience. You might want to tell everybody you know that you are a millionaire at that moment. However, we recommend that you do not tell anyone yet. You will immediately draw attention to yourself when you tell people, even before you get access to your prize. As the news spreads, more and more people will want to know the jackpot winner’s identity.
The best thing to do is to take a moment and think. The fact that everything will change is both the good and the bad news. You’ve become rich, but that comes with a set of new responsibilities, and one of them is staying anonymous. Fortunately, you have some time before you receive the prize to devise a strategy for dealing with the money.
Make Copies of the Ticket
Players who played the game at online lottery sites enjoy the benefit of security because their tickets will be securely stored in their own lottery accounts. But if you played offline, you will have a physical ticket, which you will use to claim your prize when you get lucky.
You need to keep your ticket safe. We recommend you make copies of your tickets and append your signature on both sides. Then store the ticket in a safe deposit box or personal safe. This will prevent you from misplacing your ticket or have it fall into the wrong hands.
Keep Your Day Job
Don’t rush any decisions and keep your job, at least for now. That will help you to show others that there is nothing special going on – if you quit your job for no reason, people might suspect you are the lucky jackpot winner. Additionally, you will still need money to survive until the jackpot is paid out – that is another reason to be patient.
Take Steps to Stay Anonymous
Make conscious efforts to stay anonymous by reading about your state’s lottery rules and regulations. Not every state allows lottery winners to remain anonymous because they want to prove to the public that anyone can win the lottery. Some states may allow you to stay anonymous, but only for a certain period depending on the jackpot size. It is best to know your state’s specific rules and regulations concerning the lottery jackpot.
Also, staying anonymous may mean you have to stay away from social media or move out to a new home, so you don’t attract attention to yourself.
Hire an Attorney
You will need a legal professional immediately after winning the lottery. It should be a person you can trust, and make sure that they are an experienced and reputable attorney. They will protect you against potential scams because some family members or friends might try to take away the win from you.
A lawyer can also handle all the paperwork, and make sure you pay all taxes and stay in line with the regulations. Meeting the regulations is challenging, which is why you need a professional to do everything by law.
Talk to a Financial Advisor
The odds are you don’t have experience with dealing with such a big sum of money. That is why you will need a financial advisor, too. It should be a person you can trust immensely, and they should be ready to tailor a financial strategy suitable to you.
An experienced advisor will probably tell you to set enough money aside so that you can push through a rough patch if you encounter it later in life. They could also advise you on investing some funds to secure a steady revenue.
Decide if You Want to Set Up a Trust
You may be able to use a trust to conceal your identity. While many state lotteries require you to reveal your name to the public, you can maintain some privacy by claiming the winnings through a trust. With a trust, you can protect your winnings from relatives, friends, and strangers who may want to take advantage of you. Consult your financial advisor and attorney about setting up a revocable trust that can be updated as needed.
Create a Plan for What You Want to Do with the Money
Whether it is with a financial advisor or yourself, you need a plan on what to do with the money. It is perfectly fine to have a spending spree but make sure to act sensibly. Too many lottery winners have ended up homeless and without a single cent. That is why you shouldn’t think that the jackpot money is a bottomless pit. If you act smartly, you will ensure that you can enjoy the rest of your life.
Take a Vacation and Live Life to the Fullest
Hey, you won a jackpot, which means you are entitled to have some fun! Have you always wanted to travel to another continent? Would you like to buy a huge TV and the latest console to play games?
Once you claim the prize, take some time to live life to the fullest. That doesn’t mean you should act stupid, but the jackpot will secure that you can make many of your wishes come true. It is why you shouldn’t miss that unique opportunity to turn your dreams into reality!
Don’t Forget to Give Back to the Community
Should we remind you that you won huge amounts of money while many people are struggling to make ends meet? As a jackpot winner, do your best to give something back to the community. You will find numerous charity organizations that you can donate money to, and it is up to you to pick the desired ones. Alternatively, you can also help family and friends by paying their bills, helping them to set up a business, etc. You can always donate via your lawyer as the trustee if you want to pursue anonymity.
The Right to Remain Anonymous: Lottery Laws by Country
United States – The right to remain anonymous after winning the jackpot depends on the lottery states. Some states may allow complete or partial anonymity based on the size of your winnings or a specific period after winning. For instance, Arizona allows people who win above $600 to stay anonymous for 90 days after getting their prizes. Likewise, Florida permits winners of $250,000 or more to remain anonymous for 90 days. Unlike Illinois, where the winner may keep this identity confidential completely.
Currently, there are 19 states in the United States where you can stay anonymous in the lottery.
United Kingdom (UK) and Europe – Lottery winners in the UK and other European countries, such as Italy, Spain, and France, can enjoy the right to remain anonymous in the United Kingdom. It is entirely up to the winner to decide whether to share their news with others or stay anonymous. If you want, you can totally avoid the media attention, press conference, and photo ops that come with winning the lottery.
The irony is that most UK winners go public; they prefer to reveal their identity and be done with it rather than constantly hiding away from investigators looking to divulge the identities of lottery winners.
Canada – Lottery winners cannot stay anonymous in Canada because all provincial lottery corporations have rules that mandate lottery organizers to publicize the winners. When you win the lottery in Canada, lottery organizers will take your picture and other personal information, including your current city of residence, marital status, and occupation. They do this to assure the public of the lottery’s transparency and convince more people to play it.
Australia – You can stay anonymous after winning the lottery in Australia. The lottery authorizing bodies allow players to choose between sharing the news with the world or staying private.
New Zealand – Lottery winners in New Zealand can also stay completely anonymous irrespective of the size of their winnings.
The table below compares the different countries based on whether players can remain anonymous after a lottery win.
|Country||Can Players Remain Anonymous?|
|USA||Depending on the state|
19 States Where Lottery Winners Can Legally Remain Anonymous After Winning the Lottery
Did you check the lottery results, and it turns out you are the latest jackpot winner? That is great news, but for your safety and benefit, it might be better to keep that information from the public.
In the United States of America, every state has its laws when it comes to letting the lottery winners stay anonymous. After a detailed analysis, we established that 19 states allow jackpot and all other prize winners to keep their anonymity.
Those states include:
|North Dakota||Ohio||South Carolina|
A Woman Filed a Lawsuit Because She Wanted to Stay Anonymous
The biggest controversy about the lottery winner’s anonymity might have been raised a couple of years ago in New Hampshire. A female player won $560 million on US Powerball, and she signed her ticket. Once the lady had gone to claim her prize, she was informed that she couldn’t stay anonymous despite the request. The authorities explained that the fact she signed the ticket was the problem.
The woman didn’t want to accept this, so she filed a lawsuit. She risked getting even more publicity for that, but she won the case. The judge allowed her to stay anonymous, and this event might be what led many states to change their lottery winners’ anonymity laws in the future.
How to Use a Trust to Remain Anonymous After a Lottery Win
The bad news is that laws in most US states do not favor anonymity. However, there is a legal way around it, and it involves building trust. Thanks to that, the lottery company won’t reveal your name as the winner. Instead, they will inform the public that a trust organization won the prize.
A simple way is to open a “blind” trust. That involves starting an LLC (limited liability company) that shouldn’t have a name that is not associated with you. As the trust’s owner, you will claim the prize. After doing that, the only thing to consider is how long you have to wait for the lottery money. You will receive funds for the company’s account, but you will have the legal right to do whatever you want with it.
However, it is not every state that allows lottery winners to claim their winnings with a trust. The states below permit lottery winners to create a trust to claim their winnings anonymously.
How Does a Blind Trust Work for Lottery Winners?
A blind trust is a trust where the beneficiaries -the lottery winner- cannot access the funds or know where the funds are invested in. In this type of trust, the grantor is the lottery organizer, the beneficiary is the lottery winner, and the trustee is the administrator of the funds. The trustee is responsible for managing the trust with complete discretion and is not required to inform the beneficiary of any details of the trust’s transactions.
The lottery winners can name beneficiaries and specify their investment goals for the trust when it is created, but they cannot participate in decision-making or management after making the trust. This provides the highest level of privacy and a legitimate way of preventing people from easily finding your name. That could be useful, especially if you won a life-changing jackpot sum, such as the one offered by US Powerball or Mega Millions.
What Countries Allow You to Claim Lottery Winnings Through a Trust?
Setting a trust grants anonymity, safety, and security, allowing you to spend your winnings without the extra publicity that comes with a huge jackpot.
The table below contains a list of countries that allow lottery players to claim lottery winnings through a trust.
Can you remain anonymous if you win the Powerball?
That depends on the state where you won the prize. If you won the jackpot in Arizona, Texas, Virginia, North Dakota, South Carolina, Ohio, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Kansas, or Georgia, you could stay anonymous. However, the law requires revealing the winner’s name publicly in other states.
Why can’t lottery winners remain anonymous?
The laws in most states require the lottery companies to reveal the winners’ names publicly. That is how they prove that they are transparent about their business and that even the largest prizes are a fair-play game.
Should I tell my family and friends if I win the jackpot?
If you plan to stay anonymous, apply the rule that the fewer people know, the better. You should avoid telling anyone right away. Instead, wait for everything to cool down, and then choose with some carefully selected persons. Make sure they don’t spread the word, though.
Is it legal to remain anonymous after winning the lottery?
Yes, it is legal to remain anonymous after winning the lottery. However, this depends on your country or state of residence. Certain states in the USA allow players to remain anonymous; the UK and other European countries also allow lottery winners to keep their identities secret. However, you have to share the news of your lottery win with the public in Canada.
How can I set up a trust or LLC to remain anonymous after winning the lottery?
You may need an experienced financial advisor or legal professional to help set up a trust or LLC to remain anonymous after winning the lottery. They will help you set up the trust or LLC correctly and ensure that all vital steps are taken to maintain the identity while complying with the state’s law.
Can I use a financial advisor to help me remain anonymous after winning the lottery?
Yes, you can use a financial advisor to remain anonymous after winning the lottery. They can help you set up a trust or LLC to maintain anonymity. They also help you to invest your winnings and provide financial advice on how to manage your winnings.
What are the risks of remaining anonymous after winning the lottery?
Remaining anonymous after winning the lottery can pose several risks. For instance, it could be more challenging to maintain compliance with tax laws and regulations. You may also find it more difficult to protect yourself from scams and frauds because, with your identity secret, it may be easier for someone to impersonate you. Not to mention that you may be subjected to constant haggling by investigators who want to reveal the identity of the lottery winners to the public.
Are there any other ways to remain anonymous after winning the lottery?
Other ways to remain anonymous after winning the lottery include relocating to a new location where you aren’t known, staying off social media, changing your phone numbers, and abstaining from making big purchases that may draw unwanted attention to yourself.
A lottery win is life-changing in every way, but it is something that happened to you. That means you should have the right to keep the information about your win to yourself. Unfortunately, not many states allow you to stay anonymous, but there are legal ways around that. You will need to invest a bit of time and effort to protect your anonymity from the public, but the peace of mind that you secure will be worth it.