Wealth Blog

Finance Blogs » Wealth » Biggest lottery-winner goofs

Biggest lottery-winner goofs

By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com
Friday, June 8, 2012
Posted: 10 am ET

There are many blunders that can come with sudden wealth, but the aftermath of the largest single payout in the Mega Millions jackpot illustrates one of the biggest screw-ups lottery winners make: not safeguarding the ticket.

It may seem an obvious precaution, but in April, a 37-year-old woman came forward, claiming to be one of the three winners of the record $656 million Mega Millions payout, but was unable to produce the ticket. Sorry, no dice. The ticket has to be present for you to win. Let's look at a few other examples of what lottery winners do wrong, provided by Frank Fantozzi, CEO of Planned Financial Services, and published in Investment News.

They change their lifestyle too much. Rocketing yourself into the stratosphere of the uber-rich may seem fun for a while, but you may later regret losing touch with the common folk who used to be your friends and family.

They don't have a financial plan. Having a road map is essential. Otherwise, it's too easy to spend as if you have a bottomless pit. You don't. It’s a good reason lottery winners don't come forward immediately; they're developing a financial strategy first.

They think they're getting all the money. Up to 50 percent will go toward taxes, so before commissioning the yacht, make sure you know how much you really have.

They don't get professional advice. Attorneys and accountants can save you a lot in taxes and help you design a plan that will not leave you wondering where all the money went after a few years.

They don't follow their own instincts. This may sound counterintuitive to getting professional advice, but it's not. People will come out of the woodwork to offer help, so make sure you choose wisely and find a team that is prudent with an immediate plan as well as one for the long term.

They make stupid investments. See the tip above: Everyone will have a "hot" investment tip. Don't fall for it.

Do you play the lottery? What's your dream if you win?

Keep up with your wealth and mortgages, and follow me on Twitter.

Get more news, money-saving tips and expert advice by signing up for a free Bankrate newsletter.

«
»
Bankrate wants to hear from you and encourages comments. We ask that you stay on topic, respect other people's opinions, and avoid profanity, offensive statements, and illegal content. Please keep in mind that we reserve the right to (but are not obligated to) edit or delete your comments. Please avoid posting private or confidential information, and also keep in mind that anything you post may be disclosed, published, transmitted or reused.

By submitting a post, you agree to be bound by Bankrate's terms of use. Please refer to Bankrate's privacy policy for more information regarding Bankrate's privacy practices.
103 Comments
Brendan Hagens
August 04, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Hello just came upon your website from Yahoo after I entered in, "Biggest lottery-winner goofs | Bankrate.com" or something similar (can't quite remember exactly). Anyhow, I'm glad I found it simply because your subject material is exactly what I'm looking for (writing a university paper) and I hope you don't mind if I gather some material from here and I will of course credit you as the source. Thanks for your time.

Nador
July 18, 2012 at 6:37 pm

The odds of winning the lteotry are very low and the house does have a higher advantages, but for couple of euros you can win millions and millions .just think about that guy that won the last raffle with amazing 113 million .wow..Amazing .