Mega Millions Eliminates Minimum Starting Jackpot

Saturday April 4th 2020

Mega Millions will determine future starting jackpots based on ticket sales and interest rates, rather than offering a guaranteed minimum amount. Rollover increases will also be decided and announced before each drawing.

The changes will go into effect after the next jackpot win. The next drawing is Tuesday, April 7.

The adjustments have been made because of lower ticket sales during the coronavirus pandemic, as more Americans stay at home.

The Mega Millions previous guaranteed starting jackpot was $40 million, with an increase of at least $5 million per roll.

The advertised jackpot is an annuitized amount - it reflects the value of the money from ticket sales at the time of the drawing if it is invested over the years of the annuity payout period.

Jackpot winners who take the cash lump sum option receive the amount that is available from ticket sales when the draw takes place.

No one won the $121 million top prize on Friday, April 3, and it has increased to $127 million for the next draw on Tuesday, April 7.

Mega Millions said that if the jackpot had been won on Friday, it would have reset to a guaranteed $20 million minimum. However, they have not announced that a guaranteed minimum will apply if the jackpot is won on Tuesday.

“The value of the Mega Millions jackpot is based on projected sales, and typical sales patterns have been altered because the current health crisis has required people to stay home,” said Gordon Medenica, Lead Director of the Mega Millions Consortium.

“We are concerned, first and foremost, with everyone’s health and well-being. Meanwhile, these adjustments will allow the states and jurisdictions that sell Mega Millions tickets to continue generating much-needed revenue to support state budgets.”

Announcement follows Powerball and state changes

Powerball recently announced it would also eliminate the guaranteed starting jackpot and minimum rollover increases.

Beginning after the Wednesday, April 8 drawing, jackpot and rollover amounts will be determined by ticket sales and interest rates and announced before each draw.

Previously, Powerball said on March 25 that it would reduce the starting jackpot to $20 million, with a $2 million minimum increase between drawings. However, rapid changes due to COVID-19 necessitated a new response as more governors issued stay-at-home orders for their states.

Many state lotteries have also made adjustments to the way they operate due to coronavirus, including closing offices, extending ticket expiration deadlines, and requiring that prizes are claimed by mail. Get the latest on the Coronavirus Lottery Updates page.

Combined jackpots are $307 million

Powerball drawings will continue to take place as scheduled every Wednesday and Saturday night. The jackpot for Saturday, April 4 is $180 million.

Mega Millions drawings will also continue to be held as usual on Tuesday and Friday nights. The jackpot currently stands at $127 million for the April 7 draw.

Don't want to leave home? You can still play online - your ticket is stored safely and any prizes are paid automatically into your account.

Written by

Latest News