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Mega Millions is a hugely successful American multi-jurisdictional lottery game with prizes ranging from $2 to $1 million and jackpots starting at $40 million.
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Mega Millions is a hugely successful American multi-jurisdictional lottery game with prizes ranging from $2 to $1 million and jackpots starting at $40 million.The simple premise of the game is for players to pick six numbers from two separate pools of numbers, five different numbers from 1 to 70, and one number (the Mega Ball number) from 1 to 25. They can also choose the Quick Pick option. The Jackpot is won if all six of the played numbers are matched by those that are drawn.Jackpot winners are given two payment options, annuity or cash. The annuity option is paid by one immediate payment followed by 29 yearly payments, with each payment being 5% bigger than the last one. The cash option provides a one off, lump sum payment that is less than the value of the Jackpot.As well as the Jackpot, there is more to be won with the overall odds of winning any prize being 1 in 24. Please find below a breakdown of all the prizes available:
PrizeMatch neededPrizeOdds
Rank 15 + 1Jackpot1 in 302,575,350
Rank 25 + 0$1,000,0001 in 12,607,306
Rank 34 + 1$10,0001 in 931,001
Rank 44 + 0$5001 in 38,792
Rank 53 + 1$2001 in 14,547
Rank 63 + 0$101 in 606
Rank 72 + 1$101 in 693
Rank 81 + 1$41 in 89
Rank 90 + 1$21 in 37
The Mega Millions draws are held every Tuesday and Friday at 11:00 pm Eastern Time.
Mega Millions has created hundreds of millionaires across America, and paid out the biggest US Jackpot in history in March 2012 when $656 million was split by three winning tickets. There have been some other fantastic success stories, for example Carolyn and Jim McCullar who won $190 million in 2011. They used the money on trust funds for their children and grandchildren while purchasing a new home and also donating to charity. Other great tales include Mike Nagamaki, who along with his wife was unemployed, overdrawn and nearly homeless at the time he won a $28 million jackpot in 2009. Mike currently owns and rents properties in Missouri and his family are now happily living millionaires. Mega Millions is now played in 45 jurisdictions: 43 states plus the U.S. Virgin Islands and District of Columbia. The five separate ticket holders that have benefitted from the two $600 million+ Jackpots, the highest in the history of the game, came from Kansas, Illinois, Maryland, California and Georgia. Will you be one of these success stories in the future? Make it happen by trying out the Mega Millions lottery game and give yourself the chance to win big and live the dream!
As well as the many success stories, there have also been some negative tales surrounding Mega Millions in regards to unclaimed jackpot prizes. According to the New York Times, the lotteries operating the syndicate managing the Mega Millions have as much as $1 billion in unclaimed prizes. This including prizes ranging from a $99 million ticket in Farmville, Virginia and a host of unclaimed jackpots in New York said to exceed $ 200 million dollars, significantly more than any other US state or area. Depending on the state where the ticket was bought, Mega Millions winners are given a timeframe of either 180 days (for California non-jackpot prizes only), or one year from the draw date to claim prizes, including the jackpot.
Mega Millions Game History
The Mega Millions lottery started in 1996 under its former name ‘The Big Game’ and at the time had just six states participating: Georgia, Massachusetts, Illinois, Virginia, Michigan and Maryland. In 1999 the game saw some changes, most notably players being given a larger choice of numbers to choose from as well the cash option for prize payments. After the ‘Big Game’ paid a record $363 million jackpot in 2000, there was a rise in interest for multi-state games, and this lead to the creation of ‘Mega Millions’ in May 2002 as New York and Ohio became member states. Washington, Texas and California also joined in the future which helped cement Mega Millions as the countries most widely played lottery game. Since this formation, there have been several alterations made to its matrix. Most significantly in October 2013, which is the same matrix used today, making for bigger jackpots, more secondary prizes and better overall odds of winning. The last changes made to the Mega Millions as from Tuesday 31-10-17 included a larger starting jackpot ($40 million instead of $15 million), increased prizes and different odds of winning. The main numbers to choose from became 70 instead of 75, and the Mega Ball numbers became 25 instead of 15. Thanks to these changes the jackpots are growing much quicker and are higher than usual.
Further background
Draws for the Mega Millions are hosted by full time host of Georgia lottery drawings, John Crow as well as Brian Hooker who occasionally takes the reigns. They take place at the studios of WSB-TV in Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesdays and Fridays.