Kenny Habetz Injury Law | November 25, 2023 | Personal Injury
Winning the lottery can change a person’s life in many ways. Most of those ways are positive. However, winning the lottery can have its downside, especially if you have to reveal your identity when you claim your lottery prize.
When lottery winners have their identities revealed, they can face many difficulties and challenges. Friends and family members may suddenly appear with their hands out for a portion of their winnings. Some of these people may not have been a part of the winner’s life for a long time, if ever.
Strangers appear asking for money, including charities and other organizations. Therefore, a winner may be bombarded with requests for money and donations.
Lottery winners may also be in physical danger.
A Georgia lottery winner was killed in 2015 by masked men who broke into his home. The man’s family blamed the public announcement of the lottery winnings as the reason he was targeted. A Florida lottery winner was also killed because of his lottery winnings and buried in the killer’s backyard.
Lottery winners may also become targets for scam artists. For example, someone might fake a fall on the winner’s property. The next thing the winner knows, they are being sued for a premises liability claim.
Another example of fraud is intentionally causing a car accident. For example, someone slams on the brakes in front of you, causing you to rear-end their vehicle.
The person claims to be severely injured because of the rear-end crash. Soon, you receive a lawsuit claiming millions of dollars in damages. Even if you are not responsible for the accident, you will need to hire a defense lawyer to protect your lottery winnings and other assets.
Can Lottery Winners Remain Anonymous?
Very few states allow lottery winners to remain anonymous. States that allow a lottery winner to conceal their identity include South Carolina, Ohio, Kansas, Texas, North Dakota, Delaware, and Maryland. In these states, a person can claim their lottery winnings without being required to disclose their identity to the public.
Other states have laws allowing lottery winners to form a trust to receive their winnings. In those circumstances, the trust receives the lottery winnings to conceal the winner’s identity.
Some states require that lottery winners disclose their identity to receive their winnings. The state law requires them to provide their name and location when they claim their lottery prize.
Can You Remain Anonymous if You Win the Lottery in Louisiana?
If you win less than $600 in the lottery in Louisiana, you can claim your prize from the place where you purchased the lottery ticket. In that case, you may be able to remain anonymous.
However, lottery prizes over $600 must be claimed at a Lottery Office. When you appear to claim your prize, you must complete a claim form for tax purposes. Louisiana’s lottery laws make prize records. Therefore, the public can request the information, so winners might be unable to conceal their identity.
What Can You Do To Protect Yourself if You Win the Lottery in Louisiana?
Winning the lottery comes with pros and cons. For some people, winning the lottery could result in physical injuries or death. Therefore, it is crucial that you take steps to protect your safety if you win the lottery in Louisiana, especially if you win a large amount playing the lottery.
Steps you can take if you purchased a winning lottery ticket include, but are not limited to:
- Do not answer calls or texts from numbers you do not recognize
- Change your phone number and email address
- Post no trespassing signs on your property
- Install security cameras and a video doorbell to confirm who is at your door before opening it
- Hire the services of a trusted financial advisor
Sometimes, a person may need to move to a more secure home if they win the lottery. Depending on the size of the lottery winnings, you may need to take steps to secure your safety before you claim the lottery prize.
For example, just like people need to hire a personal injury attorney if they are injured in a car accident or slip and fall accident, it can be wise to consult an attorney if you win the lottery. An attorney can help you take steps to secure a financial advisor, set up trusts to manage lottery winnings, and secure your and your family’s safety.
With the assistance of a skilled lawyer, you can manage lottery winnings to minimize risks and increase the benefits you receive from becoming a lottery winner.
Contact the Louisiana Personal Injury Law Firm Of Kenny Habetz Injury Law for Help Today
If you’ve been injured in Louisiana, please call Kenny Habetz Injury Law for a free case evaluation with a Louisiana personal injury lawyer or contact us online. We have offices in Lafayette and Crowley, LA.