June 22, 2024

Saluti Law Medi

Rule it with System

Mega Millions Jackpot Nears $500 Million

Topline

The Mega Millions jackpot climbed to nearly $500 million Saturday morning after no contestants beat the astronomical odds of matching all six winning numbers in Friday’s drawing, making the jackpot the 15th largest ever in the game’s history.

Key Facts

The jackpot hit $489 million Saturday morning with a $226.4 million cash option, giving a lucky winner the chance to take the prize in 30 annual installments or as an up-front lump sum, by far the more popular option among lottery winners.

The grand prize is the latest in a string of massive jackpots, which are partly the result of a pair of rules changes that worsened the odds of winning the jackpot—the $489 million prize comes just over a month after a winning Powerball contestant won a $1.32 billion jackpot, the eighth biggest in U.S. history.

If a lucky Mega Millions winner opts for the lump sum route their cash option would drop to roughly $172 million after a mandatory 24% federal tax withholding is applied.

Their winnings could drop even further depending on their taxable income and large tax deductions, falling as low as $142.6 million if a full 37% federal marginal rate is taken out.

Under the annual installment route, their yearly payments would drop to $10.2 million if the full federal marginal rate is deducted, while state taxes could reduce their prize even further, though not all states tax lottery winnings.

What To Watch For

The next Mega Millions drawing will take place at 11 p.m. Tuesday night, while a significantly smaller Powerball drawing with a $120 million grand prize is slated for Saturday night. Both games cost $2 to play for a single ticket.

Tangent

$1.60 billion. That’s how big the Mega Millions jackpot swelled last August, the largest in the game’s history and third largest ever in the U.S., only behind a whopping $2.04 billion Powerball jackpot won in November 2022 and a $1.76 billion Powerball jackpot last October.

Surprising Fact

The odds of matching all five white balls and the single red so-called megaball are a dismal 1-in-302.6 million. That’s just slightly worse than the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot (1-in-292.2 million).

Further Reading

ForbesWinning $1.3 Billion Powerball Ticket Sold-4th Largest Ever-Here’s How Much The Winner Could Take HomeForbesMega Millions Jackpot Nears $500 Million: Here’s How Much A Winner Would Take Home After Taxes