Mega Millions Mania
Would you like to be richer than stars such as George Clooney and Julia Roberts? That could happen if you were to be the lucky winner of Mega Millions when the drawing takes place on Friday, March 30th. The jackpot has hit almost half a billion dollars, the biggest in the world, and Americans have caught lottery fever as a result.
The exact number of the record-setting pot is an eye-popping $476 million. The Mega Millions lump sum payment will be $359 million before taxes while the annual payments over 26 years will come to just over $19 million before taxes. How much you would pay in taxes depends on where you live.
The Twitterverse has been buzzing with "Tweeple" posting 140 characters about how about how they would spend the money if they won. The odds are daunting, however. The chance of picking the five winning numbers and the Mega Ball is 175,700,000 to one. But just in case you do win, remember these tips:
Immediately sign the back of your ticket.
Contact a lawyer and a financial planner.
Consider taking the annual payments to avoid the all-too-typical pattern of winning a fortune and then blowing it all. Experts say that 9 out of 10 winners spend all their loot in five years or less.