Don't suffer from "Sudden Wealth Syndrome" where you spend more than you have won and find yourself broker than before your good fortune.
You think you need everything that you never had - immediately?
STOP before you lose it all.
What to do if you win the lottery:
1. Make copies of the lottery ticket and put the original in a safe place.
Don't leave the original on the scanner or copier glass!
2. Do not tell anyone for 48 or 72 hours.
This is your 'cooling off period'.
Your world is about to about to turn upside down.
Once you tell others, they will 'help you' spend your money.
Keep these last few days of tranquility and relish them.
Do not cash in the ticket, yet. There may be legal ramifications to the way you receive your winnings.
3. During this 'cooling off' time, investigate the different pay-out options you have to choose from.
Many lottery payouts have an option of a lump sum vs. a 25 year (or so) payout.
Find out exactly what your payout dollar amount is for both lump sum or payments.
4. Find out what the income tax consequences are for your winnings. If you know a CPA, this is the person that can help you. Tell them that you are asking for a friend, or just "What if?"
This information will help you get a 'net figure' of spendable funds.
5. Discuss the legal implications of the way you cash in your ticket with an attorney that you know. You might be better off forming a trust to receive your winnings. Attorneys know many options.
6. During this 'cooling off' time, sit down and create a written financial wish list.
Research real numbers and details so that you get an accurate assessment of your new budget.
You will not spend the money for real, yet. Just on paper.
7. You will find that your numbers from your wish list do not match up with your after-tax payouts.
The total may be higher or lower.
This is OK.
Prioritize your wish list and fill the most important needs first.
Creating a life-long income is the smartest way to make your winnings last.
A life insurance agent has the software to determine the initial dollar amount needed to create an annuity which guarantees this life-long income.
We have on staff an experienced life insurance agent who can do this for you.
Once your income is secured and you know that you do not have to work, unless you want to, the other wants and desires can be obtained.
Details that you will want to include are the consequences of any financial decisions you make, such as paying the property taxes for that new home you bought for yourself...
8. Get an unlisted phone number in case you have to abandon your current phone line that everyone knows.
9. Only after you have a workable game plan for your winnings should you announce to the world that you are the fortunate lottery winner.
This game plan will make it easier for you to control the outflow of the money.
So many lottery winners are broke within 18 months because they think that the pile of money is so high that it will not run out, so they don't learn to say "no" to at least some of the inevitable requests for funds.
10. As you are approached by charities and relatives, have a well-rehearsed response such as: "There are many people who are asking me to share in my good fortune. Since I cannot help everyone, please submit your proposal to me in writing and I will review it when my world gets back to normal."
11. Don't burn bridges. It will be tempting to tell your boss to - well you know. Negative actions tend to come back and haunt you.
Be responsible. Get help from a professional who can guide you through your options and maintain your priorities as your financial world opens up to many opportunities.
If you have won a lottery prize of at least $1 million, and would like to consult with a professional who will have your best interests in mind, call or email us.
Ask for Alisa LeSueur at 210-287-4939
or email at Alisa (at) lotterywinnersresource.org
Alisa LeSueur is an accountant of 31 years who can help with your financial options and create an income you can never outlive.
We have all the professionals that you need on staff or on call.
The initial consultation is free.