Winning the lottery changes your life completely. It can be for the better, or it can even be for the worst. Whether for good or bad depends on what you do before claiming the winning ticket, and what you do afterwards. You would be surprised to find out that many lottery winners end up getting themselves into deeper debt. Here are some things to do before and after winning the lottery.
The adrenaline you feel after your numbers get called can have you bouncing off the walls. You may be driven to tell all your friends and family as soon as you find out to share the news, but you must refrain from this instinct. To maintain your sanity, stay calm. Don’t share the news with anyone. News travels fast and before you know it, you’ll have an uncle you’ve never met come knocking on your door.
Check State Law for Winner Publicity
Check your state law to see if you can stay anonymous. Each state varies, for example Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio and South Carolina allow their winners to stay anonymous, while Arizona allows anonymity for 90 days. Georgia allows winners to stay anonymous if their winning is more than $250,000. Staying anonymous is crucial to keeping yourself as safe as possible. Once you’re publicly named as a winner, you may become a target for extortion to blackmail.
Put Together a Team
You’ll need to acquire an attorney, accountant, and financial planner. Once you are a winner, you may get frivolous lawsuits from people you would have never heard from if you hadn’t won. Your lawyer will ensure your defense for any lawsuits that may come your way. Employ your accountant to help you with your taxes. Once you invest your money, you’ll want to have an accountant on your side to help you through the ins and outs of taxes. Your financial planner will help you budget and invest your money wisely. The key to being a successful lottery winner is smart planning.
Pay Off All Debts
Before you secure the money, pay off as much debt as you can. This way, you will lessen the likelihood of a debt collector taking drastic actions once they know you have the money. Once you receive your winnings, be sure to pay off all debt. The gift of winning the lottery is the ability to put yourself in a better financial situation. Do this by zeroing out all forms of debt. Work with your team to ensure you don’t get into more debt.
Put in the work to learn all you can about money. Before you start spending your earnings, learn how money works by taking classes or reading the plethora of books out there, such as Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids about Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!
With these tips, you are equipping yourself with the best tools to make the best decisions. Don’t let the best thing to happen to you would be the worst. With bad investments, and impulsive actions, you may make yourself quick targets from malicious individuals.