Advice for instant lottery millionaires — get a lawyer.
(from NBC News Website)
That’s the new mantra in an age when winners can become not just rich overnight, but fabulously wealthy multimillionaires with all that entails — fame, celebrity, begging letters and scam artists.
The latest Powerball jackpot is worth about $400 million, the fourth largest jackpot in the history of the game. There was one winning ticket sold in South Carolina, but as of Thursday afternoon, no one had yet stepped into the glare of the TV lights to claim the prize.
Payouts of this size are rewriting the conventional financial wisdom about how the lucky winners can best handle their good fortune, from tax advice to the shape of their reconfigured lives. “Buy that Rolls and save the rest,” has become, “Lawyer up and start a foundation.”
A major revamp last year upped the cost of a Powerball ticket to $2 from $1, and it also has led to sweeter jackpots in shorter periods of time. Since March 2012, when a record-setting $656 million Mega Millions jackpot was awarded, the U.S. has awarded some of its largest lottery prizes ever. That includes Powerball’s largest jackpot of $590 million, which was won by a Florida widow in May.
For the lucky winner, here’s a checklist of things to do:
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