If, that’s a big IF.
What do we do if we won a lawyer?
Play the lottery.
I can’t remember which state, but at least one lets lottery winners remain anonymous. I think that law should apply nationwide. It’s a serious safety issue.
When the Powerball got high everyone in my office was playing and talking about it. One co-worker had a friend who had won enough of a jackpot to live the (as he hilariously called it) “sit-com lifestyle.” He and his buddy retired and had enough to attend some big sporting events, like the SuperBowl, several times a year. It really sounded ideal. The co-worker who was relating the story said that the lawyer they saw had them set up a scholarship, which was not something I would have considered. It sounded like the person he knew had taken a decent jackpot and wisely invested it to make it really into a lifetime of support.
The counterpoint to allowing winners to remain anonymous that I’ve seen is that it allows the lottery officials to rig the system and claim prizes themselves. That said, if I won I’d sure like to be able to claim it anonymously or in the form of an LLC or trust.
The easy fix is simple discreet auditing. It’s not perfect, but the lottery itself is already a money printing endeavor when run honestly… so the incentives line up somewhat. The big reason that lottery companies don’t like it is because slapping some average Joe’s face on a billboard increases sales.
The simplest solution to get past revealing the winner is to use the LLC. You do not have to declare that you are on board.
Still my favorite lottery winner story is this Reddit thread:
A few highlights:
How much did you actually get?
A little under 20 million.
What did you do when you found out you won?
Made photocopies of the ticket and contacted a lawyer.
what was the first thing you bought?
My first “lottery” purchase was a safe.
what was the most ridiculous thing you bought?
T-rex animatronic head used in Jurassic Park. It cost me $90K and sits right behind my sofa.
How much did you give to others (charity, family etc)?
I gave my parents and sister $1M each, donated another million to a
scholarship fund. Paid off the debt of lifelong friends (total cost was
How badly do people pester you for handouts (for business, charity etc)?
When it first happened I was deluged by people I hadn’t seen in years
asking me for help, telling me their SOB stories, and wanting to start a
business. I bought into a lot of it at first but you quickly become
hardened and learn to say no. I haven’t been asked for money in a few
years now, largely because I’ve been traveling.
How do you plan on living the rest of your life?
My first decision was to do nothing. But nothing gets boring fast
How did you invest it?
Various mutual funds and a full time financial advisor who is in turn
monitored by a full time accountant… who is then audited in secret by
a team of auditors.
Too bad I didn’t read this yesterday.
There are a few - but the trick is to find the one with the lowest state income tax…
If you come to Canada, you lose the anonymity, but you pay no tax on any of it.
My state has no tax & my city has no tax on lottery winnings. But you can’t be anonymous…
Changing my name to Jane Smith…
Thanks for the advice. I’ve put him on my speed dial, just ahead of Mom. Now when I watch the drawing I’ll make sure to have my phone unlocked with my thumb hovering over the button.
Seriously. I’m surprised half of all large pot lottery winners aren’t murder and kidnapping victims. Or maybe they are; not as if I know any.
I live in NH. It doesn’t get much lower than zero.
The only people who would benefit from murder would be next-of-kin, and you can’t really get ransom directly from a kidnap victim. I suppose you could kidnap the winner’s family members, but that’s no different than any other rich person.
I’d be a little surprised if winning a big jackpot didn’t come with at least a modicum of advice or referrals. Handing a random poor $20M+ without providing links to wealth management resources would be pretty irresponsible, like painting a target on their back in a warzone.
Several states don’t tax lottery winnings. The trick is do they also allow the winner to remain anonymous without setting up some legal structure to get the winnings? NH doesn’t.
So, when I get around to checking my (surely winning) ticket from last night sometime next week - I wouldn’t need to leave my state. It has state taxes - but excludes lottery winnings. I’m looking for the sweet spot of both.