Published: Thu, October 25, 2018
Finance | By Kristine Clayton

Winning the Mega Millions lottery? Here’s how much you’ll really keep

Winning the Mega Millions lottery? Here’s how much you’ll really keep

That prize - won back on January 13, 2016 - was split between three winners, including one in Chino Hills.

If one person wins the Mega Millions jackpot on Tuesday evening, they will become one of the 1,500 richest people in America.

Combined with the current Powerball jackpot of $620 million with a cash option of $354.3 million, players have a chance to win $2.2 billion in mid-week jackpots.

Despite the awful odds - one in 302.5 million for those keeping score at home - someone will eventually match all six numbers and win the Mega Millions jackpot, which now stands at an estimated $1.6 billion.

The second-largest jackpot was a $1.586 billion Powerball drawing on January 13, 2016.

"I'm going to be 70", said Hasenkopf. Since then no one has won the top prize and so the jackpot has continued to roll over. Because this isn't just about collecting money and buying tickets.

The annuity comes with big tax advantages, because it's like leaving your money with the government to invest on your behalf, and the government doesn't pay tax on the investment returns.

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Watch the Mega Millions drawing live Tuesday night on NewsCenter 16 at 11.

Tuesday's jackpot is so large, a single victor would have the option to take a whopping $904 million cash payout.

Not surprisingly, the most Mega Million jackpot winners in the past five years have come from states with the largest populations. That could also land you a historic tax bill if you win, though don't expect a lot of sympathy.

"One thing I'd consider doing is still planning for your financial future; that's always important whether you have a gazillion dollars or ten dollars", says Berning.

The nation's largest lottery jackpots have rolled for a few months.

The jackpot has been growing since July, when a group of California office workers won $543 million. "So I would give it to my dad and let him ration it out to me, like buy me my dream vehicle, put me in a nice apartment, stuff like that". New York has the highest tax at 8.8 percent and residents of New York City face another 3.8 percent extra in taxes.

Mega Millions is played in 44 states, as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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