All Articles Tagged "lottery"
If Your Office Pool Won The Lottery, And One Person Didn’t Put Money In For A Ticket, Would You Share Winnings With Them?
Folks take their office lottery pools seriously, man. When I asked my co-workers if they would share the money they won in a lottery pool (a great amount that is) with me if I originally passed on buying a ticket, a resounding “Hell no!” was the answer. But this is New York, so I didn’t expect much from them.
But in Plantation, Florida (that’s a fail for a city name by the way), people just might be a little more giving. Jennifer Maldonado, an administrative assistant at Keller Williams Partner Realty has a big family and a lot of responsibility, so as the new employee at the company, when she heard about the office pool they were putting together for the $338 million dollar jackpot going on (which we reported that Pedro Quezada of Passaic, New Jersey won), she felt that she needed to use her dollars for other things. She hadn’t been paid yet at her new place of employment, so she declined joining in. Another co-worker allegedly said they could cover her if she wanted to be a part of the pool, but she didn’t want to owe anybody anything at her new job. Before you give her the side eye, according to The Daily Mail, her co-workers were asking for $20 from each person to buy more than 100 tickets, a far cry from the usual couple of dollars most folks are asked to pitch in.
According to the Huffington Post, Maldonado got the shock of her life when she came to work and found her co-workers celebrating, only to find that they had WON, with each pool member estimated to take home more than $83,000. “I knew I was the only one who hadn’t put in the money, so I thought they were pranking me and going out of their way to make me feel something.” Sadly, they were not. While most of us would be kicking ourselves, Maldonado ended up being blessed, because her coworkers decided that they would share some of the winnings with her anyway. They haven’t made it clear how much they plan to hand off to her, but I’m betting she won’t get a full piece of the pie. Either way though, the fact that they’re willing to share any of that money at all is admirable. As Maldonado’s co-worker, Laurie Finklestein Reader put it, “If we do the right thing and always care about other people, the right thing will happen to us.” And something very right has already happened to them, so it’s good to see them sharing the wealth.
Now, what would you do? If your office came upon a huge amount of money after doing an office pool, and one person opted out of participating, would you want to share your winnings with them? I will say for my own co-workers, they did say they maybe would chip in a few dollars each for the person depending on their circumstances (Maldonado was a working mom who could use the money), so that made me feel better. But there are still many who said that when you snooze, you lose! So what do you think?
Hard as I may have tried over the years, I’ve never had much luck with the lottery. Not even the scratch-off games. As part of a lottery pool with a few co-workers, we won about $14 one time, but that money was used to buy more lotto tickets for the future, ones that didn’t win us a damn thing. But while my lotto luck has been very slim, I’m always excited for people who I read about in the news going to work one day, struggling to pay bills like everybody else, and then going home that same day a millionaire. And not just a millionaire, but the winner of hundreds of millions of dollars.
Enter in Pedro Quezada, 44, of Passaic, New Jersey, who this past weekend walked away the sole winner of $338.3 million (before taxes). The bodega owner and Dominican father of five received the miracle of a lifetime after struggling to keep up his business, his “rundown” home and feed his family. This time last week he was another face in the crowd, and now he’s on the front page of the New York Post, New York Daily News and all over the Internet, smiling it up and basking in his blessing. As I watched his face all over the news last night and this morning I thought:
“That’s so great!”
“He looks so happy!”
“Wonder what he’s going to do with all that money??”
And oh yeah…”He’s a damn fool for showing his face in public…”
No shade to Quezada, he should absolutely celebrate coming in to millions, but we don’t live in a world where everybody is happy for you and everybody has pure and good intentions. Because of that, if I was in Quezada’s shoes, I would have quietly picked turned in that ticket to collect my pay-off, taken a few sick days and ran my black a** out of town as slowly and surely (so as to not look too suspicious) as I could. In fact, instead of smiling in front of cameras, I would maybe tell my spouse, my mother, father and siblings (I’m lucky to have pretty independent siblings I can trust), but as for my job, my neighbors and the public at large? I don’t think so.
It was just the beginning of this month that The Cook County Coroner’s office confirmed that an Illinois lotto winner was poisoned with cyanide in 2012 after winning a million dollar lottery and opting for a $420,000 lump sum. It’s still not clear who is behind the man’s murder, but with the victim’s siblings and widow fighting for his money, it’s safe to say that his win was also a loss, as it brought the ugly out of people, and is tearing his family apart.
Add to that the simple fact that people love to come out of the woods looking to start businesses, seeking help to pay bills, and just wanting you to “repay them for all they’ve done for you” once folks find out that you’ve been broke off. I’ve watched enough athletes say good friends and even family drive them to bankruptcy in an attempt to allow them to live to a higher standard. And if you don’t want to say no, but don’t want to go poor either in the process, it’s best, in my opinion, to limit who you share all this good news with.
I probably sound pretty paranoid, but I’m with the folks who pick up their checks with their faces covered, wigs on, even gloves on trying to play incognito. Though lottery officials in different states say they reveal the names of winners as a matter of public record, if possible, I would think anyone who wins such a huge cash monetary prize and aren’t in those states would try their hardest to keep it on the low. I wouldn’t be on camera revealing my entire family, my business, and showing people where I live. Because you never know what people are thinking or are up to when they’re smiling in your face, congratulating you…
Mo money mo problems.
So what would you do if you won the lottery, and who would you tell?
So many people are buying Powerball tickets that the jackpot has reached $550 million. $550 MILLION! That’s more than half a billion dollars. That’s real money.
USA Today reminds us that the jackpot was $325 million on Saturday, so the increase has been fast and furious. The newspaper says people are “snapping up $2 tickets at a rate of more than 100,000 a minute.” The drawing will take place at 10:59 ET tonight and tickets will be sold until an hour before the drawing. Which means the pot will likely go even higher. As of now, the winner gets $360 million after taxes.
Of course, some folks are telling us to forget it. The odds of winning are 1 in 175,223,510, says NBC News. You’re more likely to get killed crossing the street, die on a plane, or become a movie star they say. You know what? Hush. Just hush. Can I buy my ticket in peace? The joy of thinking about all the cool things I’d do with the money is worth the $2. (Don’t buy $100 worth of tickets. That really is crazy.)
Also, you could be that one.
The person holding the winning Powerball ticket is somewhere in Michigan. That person — a single human being holding a little slip of paper — is also $337 million richer (minus taxes, which brings the lump-sum payment to $241 million). The jackpot is the third biggest in Powerball history.
The winning numbers are : 6, 27, 46, 51, 56 and the Powerball, 21. The winner purchased the ticket at a gas station in Lapeer, a town about 45 miles from Detroit. Five tickets sold are worth $1 million, and another ticket in Nebraska is worth $2 million.
The odds of winning were 175 million-to-one and more than 86 million tickets were sold. According to the senior drawing manager of the Multi-State Lottery Association, Sue Dooley, everyone has an equal chance of winning when they plunk down their $2 for a ticket. Interesting facts about the drawing:
-One of those machines costs $55,000. Each of the balls costs $60.
-Cameras positioned all around the Florida studio where the drawing takes places beam the proceedings back to the lottery HQ outside of Des Moines, I.A.
-Iowa officials take a final count of the jackpot about an hour before the drawing, so it can be accurately announced during the drawing.
So even if you didn’t win, you’re now rich in lottery information.
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If there was ever a reason to start taking lottery pools at your job more seriously, the winning pool of two Baltimore teachers and an administrator should be proof that you can’t miss out next time.
The three educators stepped forward on Monday to collect their winnings, but did so anonymously: they wore sweatshirts, gloves and hid behind one of their checks. I guess they were smart enough to realize that the minute they let the world know who they were, the sooner the “world” (and all of its many cousins) would want to get broke off too.
According to the Baltimore Sun, the individuals aren’t planning to spend their new millions on extravagant and wasteful things. After taxes, all three winners will attain $35 million in the next few days, which they plan to use on sensible things like new homes, investments (BORING! I’m kidding…), a European vacation, and probably the best idea: a college fund for one of the winner’s children.
After the big lottery on March 30, a woman by the name of Mirlande Wilson, a single mother of seven kids who played the lottery in a pool with her McDonald’s co-workers (but bought extra tickets for herself, alone), tried to claim that she was a winner. Then she wasn’t so sure if she was, causing a great deal of stress for her co-workers and lottery officials. In the end, she wasn’t the winner, we all learned the importance of making photocopies of the tickets we buy in pools, and these three winners shared a good laugh: “They were humored by it,” says Maryland Lottery Director Stephen Martino. Now that the three winners from Maryland stepped forward yesterday, and the winner from Kansas stepped up last week, the last
baller winner from Illinois is the only person left to come forward.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the Maryland winners are two women (one in her 20s, the other in her 50s), and a man (in his 40s), and before winning the lottery, each were said to have been working second jobs to pay the bills. Now that they don’t need a second or primary job, I’m wondering if they will chuck the deuces to their education positions? I love the kids just as much as the next person, but with $35 million??? Geez…I think I’d already be on my way to backpack through Europe. Congratulations!
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If you were looking for a reason why you might want to avoid getting caught up in an office lottery pool, this situation might just give you 38 million reasons why.
While working as construction workers in New Jersey, Americo Lopes and five of his cohorts (Candido Silva Sr., Jose Sousa, Daniel Esteves, Carlos Fernandes, and Candido Silva Jr.) used to pool their money together for years in order to have a better chance at winning the lottery. They didn’t have the luck like most people, but in 2009, after sending Lopes with money to buy Mega Millions tickets, they all won! Unfortunately for the five men, Lopes didn’t let them know. That’s right folks, Americo Lopes took the winning lottery ticket, cashed it in, and after deducting taxes, he walked away with more than $17 million. Dirty, much?
Thinking he was very slick, according to the New York Times, Lopes collected the winnings and told his job that because of foot surgery, he needed to quit doing construction. But if The Wire has taught us anything, it’s that word on the street spreads fast. One of the men in the pool found out Lopes won, but he lied and told the men he won after quitting. However, a quick search online found that the man was a winner while still working with his friends, and the five brothas in the pool out millions were being played like losers. So the smart thing to do, which they did, was take him to court. During the proceedings, the men seemed more hurt than angry, because they looked at Lopes as a good friend, while one, Candido Silva, Sr. looked at him like a son. According to the New York Times, he broke down on the stand at the act of alleged betrayal.
Lack of written evidence had Lopes’s lawyers questioning if the men were lying, and the “winner” stuck to the story that he bought a ticket separate from the pool that helped him strike it rich. But in the end, the Union County jury believed the five men and said Lopes would have to share the winnings. A huge chunk of taxes was taken out of the winnings (obviously, 17 million and 38 million = a big difference), and since the lawsuit started, a freeze was put on the money. Therefore, the tax situation has to be dealt with before all of the men can get…how do you say…broke off. But while watching the TV last night, local news outlets were claiming each man might be able to walk away with around $4 million each. Not bad!
When the verdict came in yesterday, Lopes was overheard saying in Portuguese, “They robbed me.” Nice try Mr. Lopes, but it sounds like it’s the other way around…
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For most people, quitting their job would be the first thing they did if they won the lottery, but not Marcia Adams. The 33-year-old says she plans to keep her job as a corporate accountant.
“I love what I do,” she said. “I have a purpose.
“I want this money to last so I can retire early, not retire now, and be comfortable and make sure that my family is comfortable.”
So what is the first thing Marcia plans to do? She told news sources, “I’m hiring a financial planner.”
Marcia definitely has her financial head on straight, even though she says the fact that she actually won hasn’t quite sunk in yet. Less than an hour before the drawing Tuesday, Marcia told her boyfriend to pick up a Quick Pik when he stopped by an Atlanta Food Mart. Later, she said she knew someone had won the millions but she didn’t think for a second that it was her. It wasn’t until Thursday morning that Marcia remembered the ticket when she and her boyfriend saw a lottery billboard on their way to work.
“He checked the number on his phone, and screamed my name,” Marcia said. “We pulled over to the side of the highway so I could check the number again. Then I said, ‘We’ve got to get to the nearest store so I could check the numbers again.’”
After telling her job she wouldn’t be in—just for the day—Marcia went directly to the lottery office for confirmation that she was the winner. Because Marcia chose to take a lump sum, her winnings were reduced to $52 million. After state and federal taxes take another 35 percent, she’ll take home about $33.8 million.
“That’s plenty,” she joked.
Something tells me Marcia won’t ever appear on one of those “the lottery ruined my life” shows.
Would you keep working if you won $72 million?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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Lottery winner Tyrone Curry still lives in the same modest Seattle home he shared with his wife and extended family when he won $3.4 million in the lottery. He drives the same car, and even has the same job, five years later. After “cleaning up” in the Washington State Lottery, Tyrone kept right on cleaning — the halls of Evergreen High School that is — where he has worked for 40 years.
He continues sweeping, emptying the garbage and raising the American flag every morning in daily rituals that benefit the community he is central to. The only difference is the additional resources at Curry’s disposal to further enhance students’ lives. And with true dedication to his school, Tyrone will use his lottery winnings to make the Evergreen High property even better. MSNBC.com reports:
Five generations have grown up around him since he came home from war and started taking care of kids. Budget cuts eliminated Tyrone’s teaching assistant’s job 35 years ago, so he stayed on as a janitor. He never went looking for another classroom because he found a better one — and a second job — out back.
You see, Tyrone isn’t just the Evergreen High School custodian; he also coaches the track team. And that’s where he decided to splurge with his lottery winnings.
“I’m getting excited!” he says, watching runners circling toward him on the school’s old cinder track. This summer he’s building them a new one. State-of-the-art. Cost him 40,000 bucks.
“I’m not done,” he chuckles. Tyrone buys more lottery tickets every week. “Our tennis coach, she has, like, a hundred kids tryin’ to play on four courts.” Tyrone dreams of building more. Doesn’t care about the odds. “Life is lucky!” he says. And when it’s not, Tyrone feels it falls to the janitor to fix it.
Not content to improve the facilities alone, Curry has taken it upon himself to help the school’s track team captain through recent misfortunes. When DeVante Botello’s mother died of a heart attack, Tyrone filled the emotional gulf with encouraging words. Curry is now taking care of the college tuition the honor student’s mother was planning to pay.
Botello doesn’t have his father in the picture, so Tyrone is taking on that role, in addition to being his coach, mentor — and hero. DeVante told “The Today Show,” “Coach is probably the most amazing man I’m ever gonna meet. He’s my hero — a real hero [...] Whatever I do with my life is gonna be in honor of Tyrone.”
Tyrone and his wife Michelle had been in the middle of bankruptcy proceedings when he hit it big. After their windfall, it would have been easy for a man who had spent much of his life serving others to choose to focus on himself. But instead he decided to give more. Does being a Vietnam veteran inspire Curry to remain committed to those under his care? He certainly doesn’t do it out of pride.
“I’m just Joe Citizen,” he told NBC’s “Today.” He might be a regular guy, but he is doing the extraordinary. Maybe Tyrone uses his millions to help others, because of the greater emotional wealth that giving brings.
(Chicago Reporter) — Shaking hands with officials from the Illinois Lottery, Bob Dale felt like a winner. No, he didn’t win the jackpot or even one of those scratch-off cards. But his business, R.J. Dale Advertising, had just sealed a $100 million contract with the Illinois Department of Revenue, one of the largest contracts awarded to a black-owned business in Illinois. But looking back on his big win now, Dale doesn’t feel so lucky. Low commission rates and sky-high legal fees from state audits meant R.J. Dale Advertising didn’t even make a profit for being the lottery’s chief advertising agency. “Quite honestly, it damn near put us out of business,” he said. The lottery, on the other hand, fared well. During its five-year contract term, revenue from the lottery increased by $490 million. Dale and hiscolleagues hoped that success would generate new business. As it turned out, the lottery contract opened no new doors for the firm. Major corporations “didn’t care about the phenomenal success we had,” Dale said. “They just weren’t interested in hiring a black-owned business.” Many minority business owners say they still face significant discrimination in the marketplace. To help remedy that, some states, including Illinois, have created programs to make sure that some government contracts go to diverse businesses.
(Hartford Business) — A New England minority business advocacy group is using Hartford billboards to blast the Connecticut Lottery Corp. for allegedly failing to tap minority-owned businesses in its procurement processes. The Greater New England Minority Supplier Development Council — with offices in Hamden and Boston — says a substantial portion of the lottery’s nearly $1 billion in annual revenues comes from selling tickets to the minority community. However, the group claims the lottery does not use a proportionate amount of minority-owned businesses when hiring contractors, particularly for its marketing and advertising.