My Lottery Heartbreak: How Powerball Winning Can Hurt You

My Lottery Heartbreak: How Powerball Winning Can Hurt You

Normally we don’t like any argument that features the words, ‘admit it’.

They’re usually followed by seemingly delectable but essentially creepy fantasies such as, ‘we’d all like to kill our boss.’ This writer has always been blessed by wonderful bosses – why, even the tyrannical ones were loveable. ‘Admit it’ statements are more revelatory than trenchant. But in this special case, we’re willing to take a punt: we all want to win the lottery. Admit it.

Alas, the stories abound: winning the lottery can become a disaster, a tragedy, a big stinking mess. Everyone puts out their hand, and when you leave it empty (no winnings pot is big enough to feed everyone), you can say goodbye to kith, kin – indeed, to everyone but the dog. Perhaps it isn’t worth it.

Tax expert Robert W. Wood, our featured author, suggests just that and he has the stories to prove it. Games like Powerball can now offer prizes topping a billion dollars. Let’s say you win: you’ll likely be surprised at how many tax jurisdictions suddenly consider you a person of interest. Perhaps you don’t care: if you win a billion and end up with say $300 million, that’s plenty; let the tax man cometh. But Wood says your troubles are just beginning.

Your wise first step, after lighting that cigar, might be to lawyer up. A good tax specialist is obviously needed. Watch out for aggrieved friends, coworkers and family, too. Maybe they think you were partners in buying the ticket (and maybe you were, skinflint). They may come after you and cases like these get complex, prolonged and costly right-quick. You want to be on a beach somewhere and there you are, facing the bench somewhere and while they have a bar, it isn’t the kind you seek.

For more information, please read:
$1.6 Billion Lottery Winner Will Face Huge Taxes, Possible Lawsuits | Forbes

 

Takeaways from October’s Bumpy Ride in the Market The IRS Statute of Limitations and Its Exceptions