Mega Millions $636 million jackpot – the second-biggest lottery payout in US history – will be split among at least two winners after tickets in California and Georgia matched all six winning numbers Tuesday night, officials said.
The California ticket – with winning numbers 8, 14, 17, 20 and 39, with the Mega Ball 7 – was bought at a store called Jenny’s Gift Shop in San Jose, state lottery spokesman Alex Traverso said.
Mega Millions $636 million jackpot will be split among at least two winners after tickets in California and Georgia matched all six winning numbers
The Georgia ticket was purchased at Gateway Newsstand in Atlanta, Georgia Lottery spokeswoman Tandi Reddick told NBC News.
Had there been no winners Tuesday, the jackpot would have rolled over, likely approaching or even topping the once-unthinkable $1 billion barrier for Friday’s drawing, Mega Millions officials said.
Mega Millions jackpot rocketed to $636 million – the second-largest in US history.
Long queues were reported in stores selling tickets, which are available in 43 states.
The current American jackpot record is $656 million – that was split between three winners in 2012.
If no winner is picked in Tuesday evening’s Mega Millions draw, the total could hit $1 billion by Friday.
Mega Millions jackpot rocketed to $636 million, the second-largest in US history
The jackpot was previously estimated at $586 million, but on Tuesday lottery officials increased their prediction due to strong ticket sales.
Undeterred by odds of one in 259 million, large queues of would-be winners formed at petrol stations and convenience stores.
If received in a lump cash sum as opposed to an annuity, the total would be $341 million, a lottery official reported.
Not every winner need necessarily face the standard news conference with the bottle of bubbly and chunky cardboard cheque.
Six US states allow lottery winners to remain anonymous: South Carolina, Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota and Ohio.
In several other states, it is reportedly possible for winners to keep their names secret by claiming their jackpot through a trust or a limited liability company.
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Mega Millions lottery game is sporting its second-largest jackpot ever, an estimated $400 million, for Friday’s drawing.
Today’s multi-state Mega Millions drawing is the fifth largest lottery jackpot of any kind in US history, according to game officials.
The jackpot has been growing since October 1st and has rolled over 20 times without a winner – thus the estimated $400 million jackpot, which also carries a $216 million cash payout option before taxes.
Mega Millions lottery game is sporting its second-largest jackpot ever
Mega Millions had been outshined somewhat by the massive jackpots of the Powerball game, which doubled ticket prices to $2 in January 2012, enriching jackpots as it also added a number of secondary prizes.
Mega Millions received a makeover of its own in October specifically to increase the size of jackpots. The biggest change was lowering the odds of winning, which led to fewer winners and more rollovers.
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