There was no winning ticket in Saturday’s Powerball lottery, and the jackpot now stands at $670 million but is expected to grow for Wednesday’s drawing. In this photo from March 26, 2019, George Hollins buys a Powerball ticket at the Shell Gateway store in Boynton Beach, Florida.
It’s happened again – no one won the Powerball jackpot as a result of Saturday’s drawing. That means the grand prize will be even bigger Monday: an estimated $670 million.
Saturday’s numbers were 28, 38, 42, 47 and 52. The Powerball was 1.
Those numbers weren’t so lucky for those who had tickets. And, sure, the odds of winning the jackpot are one in 292.2 million. But there’s still hope for dreamers aiming to win the biggest lottery prize in months. Monday’s drawing will take place at 10:59 p.m.
The question for them is: What to do with the money – $474.8 million before taxes if you take take the cash option – if you win it?
Financial experts have plenty to say about that. Here are a few tips to keep in mind from the moment you stop jumping for joy.
Secure the winning ticket
The first thing to think about is making sure your golden ticket is secure. According to State Farm, winners should make several copies of the ticket – both sides – to show to an attorney or accountant. Then make sure the ticket is physically safe, placing it in a safe or bank safe deposit box.
Hire an attorney and other advisers
If you suddenly find yourself with hundreds of millions of dollars, you’re going to need some professional help to deal with it.
According to the personal finance blog Money Crashers, lottery winners should seek a tax attorney “who specializes in helping clients of significant means minimize tax liability without running afoul of the IRS.”
Other professionals who would be good additions to your team, it says, include a family law or estate planning attorney; a financial planner; and a certified public accountant who helps wealthy families.
Don’t make big life changes immediately
Take it easy for six months. That’s the advice from Forbes, which suggests that you don’t do all those things you dreamed of doing – quitting your job, buying a mansion in the south of France – right away. It’s OK to spend big on a few things but wait awhile before making giant investments.
And remember that sometimes the best dollar invested is actually invested in paying off debts. Make that a priority, Forbes says.
Create a financial buffer
Then, of course, there is the issue of all the other people who will be interested in sharing your windfall. They could be family or friends – some you never even knew before – who ask for money and cause you to give away more than you intend.
That’s why the business news website Business Insider has this advice: “One way to avoid this problem is to have a trusted third-party serve as an intermediary to handle all requests for money. This person can be a close, responsible family member, or a neutral, financial adviser who can offer you some perspective.”