It's a case of don't count your chickens before they hatch
Other than your birth, your marriage, births of your kids, and other important events in your life, winning the lottery can be one of the most exciting things that could ever happen to you but there are lots of dos and don'ts. But don’t break out the Champagne just yet! A look into your bank account will show no deposit from the Lottery Operator and that dream or a commercial that may make you think you are an instant millionaire is far from being a reality.
What has just happened is that you have beat out all the other people who played the same draw and never made the cut. And you beat them all out. But you haven’t really won anything yet. Both you and your ticket next need to be verified by the operator to prove your ticket is the winning one and you are the legitimate holder and owner of the ticket.
You next need to visit the lottery centre to have that done. However, some jackpot winners treat everything now as if they already have the money in their possession and will do bad stuff like ordering a limousine to take them to the lottery centre in style.
This a behaviour that you will have to control if you win the lottery. Just having the winning ticket is not enough for you to celebrate just yet. Until that ticket and you as the ticket holder are verified and you are declared the winner, all you have is a piece of paper, not cold hard cash.
Remaining calm under these circustances can be difficult but you must keep yourself grounded. Do not take a limo to the lottery centre. Do not promise to clear up any bills or debts. Do not go on a spending spree like, well, you just won the lottery. This behaviour could bite you right on the backside if there is any issue in the ticket and ticket holder verification.
Many things can delay or prevent the payment of the lottery jackpot to you. Lottery win auditors have all the information of where and when the ticket was purchased, and other information only the rightful ticket holder should know. So if the ask you where and when you bought the ticket, and you can’t give them the correct answer, it sets up a red flag and delays the verification until other information can be verified, such as your signature on the ticket.
Also, if someone else makes a claim on the ticket, then auditors must determine if both parties are privy to the ticket or if someone is making a false claim. This again will delay any payments, which may be up to a year or more while the investigation takes place. And if the Operator determines that both parties have a claim to the ticket, then when you do eventually get your prize money, it will only be half of what you thought you would get.
If the investigation determines that you are not the legitimate holder of the winning ticket, then you will never see a penny of that prize. You would be left with a limo rental fee, possibly not getting that new house you are going to use your “winnings” to buy, and those promised bills and debts will now get paid. Celebrating a lottery win prematurely can be a mistake that will cost you plenty.
So what should you do if you have the winning ticket for the jackpot? Celebrate the win quietly and keep as calm as possible. Don’t pre-spend any of that money. Go to the lottery centre and get yourself and your ticket verified. Now, you just have to wait until you see the money in your account. Now you can take a bit of the money and celebrate you good fortune with family and friends.
Remember that no matter how much you win, you actually haven’t won the lottery until that money is actually in your bank account.