Helping a family member purchase a vehicle, repairing a fire-damaged home and attending a NASCAR race are just some of the ways winners of the Louisiana Lottery's scratch-off games planned to spend the more than $6.6 million in cash prizes claimed in May. The Lottery also reported more than $7.7 million won from draw-style game tickets last month.

May's draw-style game winnings included one Lotto jackpot worth $950,000, two Easy 5 jackpots totaling $624,002, 142 "match-5" Lotto prizes averaging $2,105 each and 10 Powerball prizes of $10,000 each. Pick 3 prizes totaled $1,705,210 and Pick 4 prizes totaled $1,526,400.
Easy 5 prizes totaled $879,525 with an additional $260,643 won in ezmatch prizes. For an additional $1, players can add ezmatch to their Easy 5 ticket for the chance to win up to $250 instantly. 

"More than 40,000 Power Play purchasers won a bonus total of $405,944 in addition to their regular Powerball prize," Lottery President Rose Hudson said.  For an additional $1, the Power Play option offers Powerball ticket purchasers the chance to multiply any nonjackpot-related prize up to five times depending upon the Power Play multiplier number randomly selected during the drawing.

In total, draw-style game winnings were $7,760,562 in May. Lottery draw-style game players have 180 days from the date of the drawing to claim any winnings from those tickets.  "We encourage players to sign the back of their tickets immediately after purchasing and to check them promptly after the drawing. Even if a ticket does not win the jackpot, it could have won another prize," Hudson added.

In addition to $6,685,684 in scratch-off cash prizes paid during May, players also claimed $1,295,067 worth of free tickets. According to Lottery policy, scratch-off games are closed when all top prizes are claimed, and scratch-off players have 90 days from the official game closure date to redeem a winning ticket. 

While actual game performance and the amount of prizes claimed will vary from month to month, the Lottery allocates at least 50 percent of sales to fund prizes. At least 35 percent of sales is transferred to the state treasury for the Minimum Foundation Program that funds public education in Louisiana. Retailers are paid at least 5 percent in commission, and the Lottery retains less than 10 percent of sales to operate.

Hudson reminded ticket purchasers to play responsibly, encouraging anyone who has a gambling problem, or friends and family of anyone with a gambling problem, to call toll-free 1-877-770-7867 for help.  Ticket purchasers must be at least 21 years of age.