Will we ever find out who won Illinois’ $1.34 billion Mega Millions Lotto ticket? – NBC Chicago

Last week, just before a crucial deadline arrived, the Illinois winners of the second-largest Mega Millions Jackpot in US history finally came forward to collect their $1.34 billion Mega Millions lottery ticket, purchased at a gas station in the suburbs of Chicago.

“The prize was shared by two people, who agreed to split the prize if they were won — and they stayed true to that word,” the Illinois Lottery said in a press release.

The identities of those two persons, however, remain unknown.

“The winners wish to remain anonymous and the Illinois Lottery cannot share any information about the winners, other than to absolutely be ‘over the moon’ with their Mega Millions winnings.”

According to the Illinois Lottery, winners are allowed to request anonymity if the prize exceeds $250,000, which certainly applies in this case.

“I’ve been working for the Illinois Lottery for over five years and this is by far the biggest prize I’ve ever had to handle,” said Luis Rodriguez, Illinois Lottery Claims manager. “It’s a surreal feeling to give away this amount and knowing what a huge impact this is going to have on the lives of the winners, as well as for others close to them. It was an incredible feeling to just be a part of that process – so I can only imagine how the winners themselves feel.”

The winning ticket to the massive July 29 jackpot was purchased at a gas station in suburban Des Plaines.

Speedway, the corporate gas station chain at 885 E. Touhy Ave., will receive a half-million dollar bonus for the sale of the winning ticket.

“These winners are now in the enviable position of deciding what to do with their newfound fortunes,” Harold Mays, executive director of the Illinois Lottery said in a statement. “They stopped at the Speedway in Des Plaines and grabbed a Mega Millions ticket while there. That turned out to be an absolutely life-changing decision as a $3 Mega Millions line with Megaplier turned into a $1.34 billion jackpot.”

The move marks the end of weeks of speculation about what might happen to the massive prize and whether it would go unclaimed.

If no one claimed the winning ticket within the allotted 12-month time frame set in Illinois, each state that participated in the game would get back all the money it contributed to the unclaimed jackpot. According to the Illinois Lottery, each state can use its unclaimed lottery prizes for a variety of purposes.

But while the winners still had time to claim the prize, they only had a few days to determine how they would receive their money – a decision they’ve made now.

Under the rules, the winner had 12 months from the draw date to claim their winnings, but according to the Illinois Lottery Winner’s Handbook, “Lotto, Mega Millions and Powerball winners have 60 days from the draw date to claim the money.” choose option or annual payments.”

The $1,337 billion price would be paid annually over 29 years if the winner chooses the annuity option. If the winner chooses cash, he will receive an estimated $780.5 million.

“Failing to choose a payment option within the 60-day period automatically results in annuity payments,” the handbook states.

As of September 21, the winners had less than a week to decide.

According to the Illinois Lottery, the winners have spent the past few weeks working with legal and financial advisors and opting to pay the lump sum.

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