It’s the Powerball draw that all of Australia is talking about, with $200 million up for grabs — the highest division one prize in the country’s history.
About half of the adult population in the country is expected to buy a ticket forin Powerball draw 1446, with demand for tickets skyrocketing.
“It’s unfathomable what winning even just a slice of next week’s $200 million Powerball division one prize would do for you this year and the rest of your life,” The Lott spokesperson James Eddy said.
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“I know I’m excited, so I can imagine Australian lottery players are rubbing their hands together at the thought of bagging $200 million and taking home the crown as the largest lottery winner in Australian history.”
But there are a few key things that players should know before the draw takes place. Here are our top tips for Powerball winners:
About half of the adult population in the country is expected to buy a ticket for the $200 million Powerball draw 1446, with demand for tickets skyrocketing. Credit: The Lott
1. If you’ve lost your ticket, don’t panic
The Lott says there are ways it can help you find a lost ticket.
For lost tickets registered to a player cardIf you’ve lost a ticket that’s registered to a player card, The Lott advises that you call 131 868. If you’ve lost both your ticket and your membership card, The Lott says to take more urgent action. “Please call us immediately on 131 868 so we can place a ‘Stop Payment’ on your ticket. This will prevent anyone else from claiming your prize, provided the prize has not yet been paid,” it advises.For lost tickets not registered to a player cardIf you’ve lost your ticket and it was not registered to a player card, you will need to complete a Lost or Damaged Ticket Search Form — this will help The Lott locate the ticket in its lottery system. Once the form is completed, a search fee of $15 ($22 for South Australian players) must be paid prior to the search proceeding and a statutory declaration must also be completed by the claimant. “Successful claims will be paid after the claim periods as stated in our terms and conditions have elapsed,” The Lott says.
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2. You may have to pay tax
In Australia, lottery prizes — won through entries with Golden Casket, NSW Lotteries, Tatts, Tatts NT and SA Lotteries — are classified as tax-free income.
However there is a sneaky catch you need to know about.
The Lott advises that “once your prize is in a bank account, any interest earned on your prize is subject to income tax for both you and any gift recipients”.
It adds: “We strongly suggest seeking professional financial advice for major lottery wins to ensure you receive the maximum benefit from your good fortune.”
3. You can’t collect your $200m in store
Only prizes of up to $1,500 in Queensland, Victoria, Tasmania and the Northern Territory can be claimed at your local retailer, while prizes of up to $1,000 can be claimed at stores in New South Wales and the ACT.
In South Australia, prizes of up to $500 can be collected at SA Lotteries retailers – while prizes between $500 and $5,000 can also be collected at the individual store’s discretion.
All major prizes over these amounts — including Powerball division one — can only be claimed either in-person at one of The Lott’s head offices or by post.
“Your local retail outlet can supply you with the Prize Claim Form needed to claim these major prizes,” The Lott says.
Powerball’s jackpot has jumped to $200 million – the biggest lottery prize in Australia’s history. Credit: AAP
4. You’ll have to wait two weeks to get your money
The Lott has confirmed that winners will receive their millions 14 days after scooping the jackpot.
That’s two weeks to plan exactly how you’ll spend your winnings, before the funds are deposited into your account.
“You’ll have a two-week provisional period to plan what you’re going to do with your life-changing prize,” The Lott says.
The prize will then be paid into your online account so you can then withdraw the millions to a bank account of your choice.
5. The Lott won’t always call you about your win
If you’re a registered user and your prize is more than $40 million, a representative from The Lott will phone you “immediately after the draw” to take you through the prize claim process.
However if you’re not a registered player and you’re holding a winning ticket, lottery officials will not be able to contact you.
In this case, you need to call The Lott on 131 868 to start the process of claiming your millions.
If you’re concerned about your gambling or the gambling of a friend or family member, log on to Gambling Help Online or make contact via phone on 1800 858 858.
You can access online counselling as well as services in your state or territory and support for family and friends.