Ohio Man Finds $1 Million Powerball Ticket Just in Time

Monday April 27th 2020

Looking for a benefit of spending so much time at home? As an Ohio man discovered, you just might find a winning lottery ticket you'd forgotten all about.

Next Estimated Jackpot:
$186 Million
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It's a surprisingly common scenario: Dream of winning the lottery ... buy ticket ... lose ticket. Whether those little slips of paper end up on the floor of the car or shoved into the back of a drawer, lost tickets add up to billions of dollars in unclaimed prizes that Americans leave on the table every year. And once wins expire, they're gone for good.

Jerry from Springfield, Ohio, is one of the lucky ones. He was looking through his wallet last month for his doctor's card when his search turned up something else - a rolled-up Powerball ticket that was almost six months old.

When Jerry purchased the ticket last year, his brother was fighting cancer and Jerry was regularly driving him to treatment appointments. On one such trip, Jerry picked up the ticket from a gas station and put it in his wallet. And there it stayed until it was just days away from expiring (180 days from the draw date in Ohio).

When he came across the ticket, Jerry jumped online to check his numbers and found he'd matched five. "I thought, this is not a joke! So, I asked my wife to check the numbers too," he said. She confirmed that the ticket matched the five main numbers from the October 16, 2019 drawing, only missing the red Powerball.

Jerry was even more shocked when he checked the prize amount again. "I think it's $100,000. I went to the website and looked at prizes and lo and behold it's a million dollars!"

Now Jerry just had one problem - how to claim his prize. With Ohio's stay-at-home order in place to combat coronavirus, the lottery's offices were shut.

Jerry was anxious about redeeming his ticket by mail, given the large amount. However, he spoke to lottery employees and stayed in contact throughout the claim procedure.

Jerry has now successfully completed his prize claim - so what are his plans for his big windfall? "I'm going to share this win with my family. I want to put some money away for my kids and help my family in other ways," he explained.

Make sure to always check your tickets so you never lose out on a lottery win!

How to Claim A Prize From Home

For all the latest adjustments that lotteries across the country are making due to COVID-19, check the dedicated Coronavirus Lottery Updates page regularly.

The Ohio Lottery encourages players to claim prizes of any amount by mail during the state's stay-at-home order. Retailers may also be able to pay out tickets worth up to $599.

Prize claim deadlines have been extended following Gov. DeWine's state of emergency order. Players with a winning ticket set to expire during this period will still be able to receive their prize, provided they claim by mail or in person at a Lottery Regional Office within 30 days after the governor lifts the order.

Normally, draw game prizes expire 180 days after the draw date, and scratch-offs expire 180 days after the game closing date.

Claim by Mail

To mail your claim to the lottery, first sign and print your name on the back of your winning ticket. For prizes of $600 and over, you'll also need to send a completed winner claim form. Make a copy of the documents for your records. Send the originals to the lottery at the address below - registered mail is recommended for tracking:

Ohio Lottery Commission
The Lausche Building – Room 452
615 West Superior Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44113

New: Prize Deposit into Your Bank Account

The lottery has also introduced a new, faster way to get paid for tickets worth $50 to $5,000. Winners can use the mobile cashing option in the Ohio Lottery mobile app to have their prize sent straight to their bank account.

Simply scan your winning ticket using the app and you'll see the "Cash Out" button. Enter the bank account where you'd like to deposit the money. Your full legal name and Social Security Number are required.

When you finish the transaction, your prize will be deposited in your account. The first time, it will take five to seven business days for you to receive the money, because your bank details must be verified. For future wins, deposits will take one to three days.

Keep an eye out for the ability to deposit winnings into a credit or debit card - that's coming soon.

Play the Lottery from Home

You can still play the lottery online, including Powerball and Mega Millions, while staying safe at home. A secure transaction process, safe ticket storage, and prizes deposited into your account automatically make purchasing tickets online convenient and hassle-free.

There are some great prizes up for grabs this week ...

The jackpot for the next Mega Millions drawing on Tuesday, April 28 stands at $186 million.

The next Powerball drawing will take place Wednesday, April 29 and the top prize is a cool $43 million.

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