It’s been almost five months since the drawing for the $1.5 billion Mega Millions lottery prize. Weeks passed and still no one came forward to claim the massive prize. With the deadline of April 1 quickly approaching, it didn’t look like anyone was going to take home the winnings. However, less than a month before time ran out, someone has at last revealed themselves as the winner. The individual is from South Carolina and wishes to remain anonymous, according to NBC News.
The lucky winner has chosen to accept the funds in a one-time payment, totaling $877,784,124. This breaks the record as the largest payout for a single winner in United States history. Of course, the individual won’t be taking home the full amount of the prize. The $877 million is before taxes, 7 percent going to the state of South Carolina while 24 percent is for federal.
Meanwhile, the store that sold the ticket will be getting a chunk of the change. A KC Mart in Simpsonville will be awarded $50,o00 and the state of South Carolina is ecstatic about getting their $61 million share. The South Carolina Education Lottery Commission released a public statement shortly after the winner came forward.
BREAKING: South Carolina winner of $1.5 billion lottery ticket sold in October has finally claimed the prize https://t.co/sIgS9voysC
— The Post and Courier (@postandcourier) March 4, 2019
“We are delighted that the winner is a South Carolinian and has come forward to claim this remarkable prize. We respect the winner’s decision to remain anonymous, and we will honor the winner’s wishes.”
In an effort to respect the winner’s anonymity, the state won’t even be releasing their gender. However, they did release one tidbit of information about the day the individual bought the winning ticket. According to a commission statement, the individual allowed another customer to go ahead of them in line so that they could purchase their Mega Millions ticket first. Had they not been so polite, they wouldn’t have taken home the prize.
“A simple act of kindness led to an amazing outcome,” the statement read.
Winning this outstanding of a prize would make many want to shout the good news from the rooftops. Nevertheless, such a decision might not pay off well in the long run. Revealing your identity could put a target on your back, making it difficult to continue living a normal life. Because of this, Forbes encourages winners to remain anonymous if at all possible. This might even mean driving to a different state to purchase lottery tickets. Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio, and South Carolina are the only states in which lottery winners don’t have to reveal themselves publicly.