Lotteries have always been believed to be a golden ticket away from the financial problems plaguing normal individuals. It is a game of chance, sometimes with enormous odds stacked against you winning a big prize. Most famous lotteries like Powerball and Mega Millions promise a chance to win millions, if not billions of dollars.
For many individuals, buying a lottery is a routine, that is religiously followed for years, in the eternal hope that someday they will win big. The American lottery industry is a huge business, with sales of lotteries nearing 100 billion dollars every year. That means, on average, each American on average spends more than 200 dollars a year on lotteries. And it’s not just the USA, the lottery has been a favorite form of gambling for people around the world.
The record for the biggest payout in history is held by the Spanish Christmas lottery, amounting to more than 2.5 billion dollars in total winnings. The biggest ticket, also known as El Gordo, will take home an estimated 720 million euros this year.
With the advent of online lotteries, now any individual can buy their favorite lottery online and have a shot at the chance of changing their lives forever.
For some lucky individuals, the dreams of winning big have come true. Here is a look at the biggest winners of lotteries around the world.
The biggest lottery ever was won by 3 couples in 2016, in California, Tennessee, and Florida, who had selected the same numbers. The aggregate winning was 1.59 billion dollars, which was split equally between them. Each couple got a staggering 327.8 million dollars each, after taxes.
In 2018, an anonymous winner from South Carolina won the record for the highest payout on a single ticket, where she took home a cool 877.8 million dollars as a lump sum payment.
The third-highest annual payout of 768.4 million dollars was won in 2019 by a single individual in Wisconsin.
The largest single payout for a Powerball ticket and fourth highest overall was won by a player in Chicopee Massachusetts, who took home 480.5 million dollars as cash payment.
The fifth highest pay-out of 656 million dollars was split by 3 tickets from Illinois, Maryland, and Kansas, with two of the winners choosing to be anonymous.
While some individuals can just dream of winning the lottery once, a family in Scotland has won lotteries of 1 million pounds each on three separate occasions, earning them the title of being the UK’s luckiest family.
However, not every lottery winner’s life has changed for the better after winning big. With all the unwanted attention surrounding the millions of dollars won by an individual, there are bound to be jealous people surrounding them. Certain states in the USA allow individuals to remain anonymous and claim their prize via their lawyers.
After Jack Whittaker won a prize of 314.9 million dollars in 2002, his car was broken into twice and his house was set on fire in Virginia.
Urooj Khan of Chicago was about to claim his prize of 425,000 dollars in 2013 when he was found murdered by cyanide poisoning the day before.