Winner of Mega Millions’ record $1.5 billion jackpot still hasn’t claimed prize

Winner of Mega Millions’ record $1.5 billion jackpot still hasn’t claimed prize
Posted at 9:29 PM, Nov 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-13 21:29:00-05

(RNN) - One extremely lucky person overcame 302.5 million to one odds last month to win Mega Millions’ record $1.5 billion jackpot.

But nearly three weeks have come and gone since lottery fever swept the nation and the winner has still not come forward to claim their prize.

The Oct. 23 drawing produced a jackpot-winning ticket in South Carolina. The Palmetto State is one of seven states where winners can remain anonymous.

Even so, the winner must still come forward to claim the prize. And they do not have forever to do so.

South Carolina only grants the winner 180 days from the time the ticket was purchased to collect their earnings.

If the jackpot goes unclaimed, each participating state will get back all the money it contributed. Unclaimed lottery prizes are used for different purposes by each state.

To claim the jackpot, the winner will need to sign the back of their ticket and call the lottery at 1-866-736-9819. 

The South Carolina Education Lottery advises the winner to place the ticket in a safe location and speak with a trusted financial adviser.

After that, they’ll have to choose whether they want a lump sum of cash up front or an annuity. 

The cash option will get them $878 million. The annuity, however, will get them the entire $1.537 billion jackpot in smaller payments over the next 30 years, with each being 5 percent larger than the last.

The store that sold the winning ticket, KC Mart in Simpsonville, SC, will receive $50,000, according to ABC News.

The current Mega Millions jackpot is worth $106 million. Winning numbers will be drawn every Tuesday and Friday night at 11 ET until another winning ticket has been sold.

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