Mega Millions FAQ
Can I buy tickets online?
Can I claim a prize on a multidraw ticket before all the drawings have occurred?
Yes! The multidraw features on the Lottery's draw-style games allows players to purchase plays for multiple drawings, up to 14 for Pick 3 and Pick 4 and up to 20 for Powerball, Mega Millions, Lotto and Easy 5. If you win a prize during one of the drawings, you do not have to wait until the last drawing has occurred before collecting those winnings. When you cash a winning multidraw ticket with drawings still remaining, the Lottery's terminal system will print out an exchange ticket good for the balance of the remaining drawings and with the same numbers as on your original ticket. The retailer will retain the original ticket as it is no longer valid and give your exchange ticket with your winnings.
How long do you have to claim a prize?
Winning scratch-off tickets can be claimed up to 90 days following the closure of the game. A list of closed games and end-of-redemption dates can be found on this website. Winning draw-style game tickets can be claimed up to 180 days following the drawing in which the prize was won.
How long does a Powerball or Mega Millions jackpot winner have to decide whether to take the annuity or the cash option for the jackpot?
Winners have 60 days after the ticket is validated by the lottery to elect either the annuity or cash payment option.
If I play the Lottery with a group of people, how do we go about claiming a prize as a group?
The prize on a winning lottery ticket may be split among a group of ticket owners; however only one prize check is issued. The prize check is issued to either one person or legal entity (partnership, trust, etc.). Each member of the group provides a completed IRS Form W-9 for tax reporting purposes at the time of the claim. The person receiving the check for the group also provides picture identification and is responsible for distributing the winnings to the group members.
For a prize paid in a single payment, the check recipient may choose to complete a Federal Form 5754 that ensures the tax obligation of the prize is distributed among the group members according to the gross prize amount of each person’s share. The Federal Form 5754 allows the Lottery to send a separate W-2G tax form to each individual winner noting the amount won and withheld on their behalf.
The Powerball or Mega Millions jackpot prize may be paid in the annuity payment format or the single payment cash option. The group members must decide on one payment option; it is not possible for some group members to take the cash option and others to choose the annuity.
While it is not necessary for a group of people to form a legal entity to claim the cash option, the Lottery asks a group of winners to form a legal entity with an assigned tax identification number for a jackpot prize paid in annual installments. This simplifies the tax reporting and prize distribution for a group of people receiving payments over an extended time.
When claiming a prize as a legal entity, the legal document organizing the entity must list the name of each member of the group, their city of residence, and the portion of the prize each person will receive.
The Lottery encourages all players to seek financial advice before claiming a large jackpot prize.
As with all claims, the names of those receiving prize funds and their city of residence is public record.
If I think I've won the jackpot, what should I do?
If I win, can I remain anonymous?
What happens to prize money when someone dies?
What states participate in Mega Millions?
What television stations carry the drawing results?
When are the drawings results aired?
Lotto: Wednesday and Saturday nights at 9:59 p.m., except Christmas Day.
Easy 5: Wednesday and Saturday nights at 9:59 p.m., except Christmas Day.
Powerball: Wednesdays and Saturdays at 9:59 p.m.
Mega Millions: Tuesdays and Fridays at 10 p.m.
Pick 3 & Pick 4: Daily at 9:59 p.m., except Easter Sunday and Christmas Day. There are no Louisiana-based drawings on Christmas Day or Easter. Drawings for the multistate games, Powerball and Mega Millions, will be conducted should Christmas fall on a draw day. Tickets must be purchased by 9:00 p.m. on the draw date for Powerball and Mega Millions, and by 9:30 p.m. on the draw date for Pick 3, Pick 4, Lotto and Easy 5 to be eligible for that drawing.
When someone in the other Powerball or Mega Millions states wins the jackpot, does all the money from tickets purchased in Louisiana go to the winning state?
As in all other games, the Louisiana Lottery Corporation transfers to the state treasury 35 percent of all sales of Powerball and Mega Millions tickets at Louisiana Lottery retailer outlets no matter where the top prize is won.