I should consider myself fortunate that my wife’s most recent lottery win only set us back thirty thousand dollars, considering the horror stories you hear about lottery winners, of humble people winning dumpsters full of dollars only to find themselves broke, friendless, and mired in legal trouble a few years later, I should consider myself fortunate that my wife’s most recent lottery win only cost us thirty thousand dollars.
See, she ran a lottery club at work, and the seven people who participated won a very lovely $50,000 to divide among themselves. Each player made a profit of $5,000 after taxes were deducted. I got a funny tale out of the situation, and Angela’s portion ended up being the down payment on a brand-new SUV that cost $35,000 in total.
I bring it up because the next drawing for the Mega Millions jackpot will take place this coming Friday the 13th, and it is prudent to take into account any potentially unfavourable outcomes associated with winning the jackpot.
Don’t get me wrong—we are going to play as soon as we figure out the most effective way to play the game. Given that the odds of winning are 302 million to one, having an appreciation for the psychological component is essential in order to get the winning lottery ticket.
To begin, you will need to locate a shop and a cashier at that shop both of whom you could easily imagine being featured on the evening news in connection with such a win. It’s never a glitzy chain convenience shop or a large corporate gas station like you might expect. A community hangout with a name like “Ricky’s Sip ‘N Pump” or “The Hawt Spot” is the appropriate kind of business to open. It is run-down but still has a sense of warmth and familiarity.
As for the cashier, you should seek someone who is wise, down-to-earth and has professional working in a convenience store. This person should be someone who can be relied on to look into a camera and say something like, “I sure do hope someone claims it soon because whoever wins needs to purchase a round!”
If they still have enough money after spending 1.35 billion dollars, that is. I am, of course, exaggerating, but when you look at the complete picture of how lottery winners are taxed, it is both embarrassing and astounding how little winners actually keep.
Keep in mind that we need our profits after taxes to purchase tickets, which means that right off the bat, we need to make at least $3 in order to have $2 left over for a ticket.
Then there is the portion that goes to the lottery. The states keep approximately fifty percent of each and every dollar that is collected for lottery tickets as a profit: We contribute $2.7 billion so that the jackpot can grow to $1.35 billion, and they immediately take half of that amount to pay for things like schools and roads and signs in parks that tell us not to feed candy to bears, which is fine, because if I win, I’ll buy my own bear and feed it whatever I want!
And even if you win $1.35 billion, you won’t get it unless you take it in instalments over the course of 30 years. If you want it right now, you can have it for only $708 million. My brilliant thought was that if you want to pay the jackpot over a period of thirty years, then I should be able to pay for my lottery tickets in a series of thirty annual instalments.
There has been no update from Governor Kathy Hochul regarding that idea.
And before you get that $708 million, the federal government is going to be extremely adamant on grabbing $262 million in taxes, and the state of New York is going to want $78 million: Excelsior!
If we win this thing on Friday, my wife and I will be entitled to a total of $368 million, which means that pretax earnings in the United States will need to be contributed in the amount of almost $4 billion.
And considering that a $5,000 lottery victory resulted in a $30,000 deficit for us, I can’t even begin to fathom what kind of financial obligations we will have a year from now.
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