Did you recently win the lottery? If so, congratulations! Winning the lottery makes you one of the luckiest people in the world, and your winnings can truly change your life for the better.
But, once you find out that you have the winning lottery ticket in your possession, there are some things you need to take care of.
Check out this guide to discover what to do after winning the lottery.
- Protect Your Ticket
To claim your lottery prize, you need to bring the actual physical ticket with you. If you lose the ticket, you’re out of luck and you’ll be right back where you started.
Because you need the original ticket, it’s very important that you do everything you need to do to protect it. At the very least, make a paper and digital copy of the ticket. The digital copy should be stored in an external drive as well as in an encrypted cloud storage account.
As for the original and copy, put them in a safe place where you won’t forget. But, also make sure to select a place that isn’t easy for others to find. If you can, buy a safe box to store the ticket in until you’re able to claim your winnings.
- Claim Your Prize at the Right Time
Many people rush to claim their prize money immediately. However, this can end up backfiring. If the prize is big enough to attract media attention, claiming it too soon can cause an even bigger stir and more unwanted attention on yourself.
Plus, waiting at least a week gives you enough time to get everything in order. However, you don’t want to wait too long to claim your prize. There are time limits for claiming your lottery prize that are dependent on where you live and what lottery game you one.
In some places, you have as little as 90 days, while in other places you have up to a year. Make sure you research how much time you have. If you wait too long, you’ll lose all of the prize money.
- Keep a Low Profile
While it can be tempting to shout about your good fortune from the rooftops, this is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. Advertising your winnings can make you a target for identity theft, burglary, and even violence.
Avoid telling anyone outside of your immediate family about your good fortune. Money can cause people to do all sorts of crazy things, and someone you once trusted as a friend may try to take advantage of your new-found financial situation.
- Hire the Right Professionals
It’s also very important that you hire the right professionals to help you manage your finances.
You’ll need to hire a tax attorney to help you report your winnings to the IRS. You may also want to hire an estate attorney to help you figure out what to do with your winnings should you pass. They can help you create wills, trusts, and prenuptial agreements.
It’s also a good idea to hire a financial advisor to help you manage your wealth. You can check out https://pitchbook.com/profiles/company/221709-88 to learn more about financial investment options.
What to Do After Winning the Lottery: Time to Act
Now that you know what to do after winning the lottery, it’s time to put these tips to use. Pretty soon, you’ll have your prize money claimed and you’ll be starting your new life.
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