If you want to become a billionaire without putting in the work, you might want to shell out $2 for a shot at one of the biggest Mega Millions lottery jackpots in US history.
This Friday’s Mega Millions draw will give players a chance to win $1.025 billion, the third highest sum ever offered, according to a statement from Mega Millions.
This is only the third time the Mega Millions jackpot has topped $1 billion in its 20-year history, and it comes after Tuesday’s draw of $810 million failed to produce a winner.
There’s no guarantee anyone will win this time around, and if this streak of luck continues, we could see an even bigger prize next week.
But if someone wins, they’ll have the opportunity to win $602.5 million in cash after deducting the mandatory 24% federal withholding tax, CNBC reports.
The other option for the winner is to take an annuity, which would earn him an additional $144.6 million. However, you must take this amount in installments spread over 30 years.
However, taxes aren’t the only thing that will reduce the amount of your earnings, Rob Burnette, a financial and investment advisor with Outlook Financial Center, told USA Today.
You should also watch out for scammers, friends and family who may also get your money’s worth.
“Don’t shout your victory from the rooftop,” Burnette advised. “If you’re lucky enough to win the lottery, keep quiet. Organize and make a plan. Consider remaining anonymous if possible.”
Although Mega Millions is an American lottery, that doesn’t mean you have to be American to play. According to the official rules of Mega Millions, you only need to be in the United States to buy a ticket for the draw.
In other words, Canadians, Mexicans and other foreign tourists can also try their luck for the jackpot.
The biggest Mega Millions jackpot – and the second-biggest lottery prize in history – was $1.537 billion, and it went to a winner from South Carolina on October 23, 2018.
The second highest Mega Million jackpot was $1.050 billion, which was won in Michigan on January 22, 2021.
Ohio Lottery Director Pat McDonald says they are “looking forward to the growing jackpot”.
“Watching the jackpot build over a period of months and hit the $1 billion mark is truly breathtaking,” McDonald said in a statement to Mega Millions. “We encourage customers to keep a balanced game and enjoy the ride. Someone is going to win.”
Winning numbers will be drawn at 11 p.m. ET Friday night.
If you or someone you know is struggling with problem gambling, there are resources available across Canada. Help is available.