How do I get paid? What happens if I lose my ticket? Should I do the robot or the worm for my victory dance? And other frequently asked questions.
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- How do I get paid if I have a winning ticket?
All prizes of $599 or less can be claimed at any Montana Lottery retailer. They can also be claimed at Lottery headquarters in Helena. Prizes of over $599 must be claimed at Lottery headquarters in Helena or by mailing the signed tickets with a claim form to the Lottery.
Our street address is 2525 North Montana Avenue, Helena. Our mailing address for winning tickets is Montana Lottery, P.O. Box 6073, Helena, MT 59604-6073.
- How much in taxes is withheld from each Lottery prize?
We are required by law to withhold both state and federal taxes on certain levels of Lottery prizes.
Here is the most common situation:
For U.S. citizens furnishing Social Security numbers, we are required by law to withhold 6.9% state tax and 25% federal tax from any prize more than $5,000.
However, there are other situations where the above withholding differs. Here's the law.
We are always required to withhold 6.9% state tax on all prizes greater than $5,000.
We are required to withhold 28% federal tax on any prize greater than $599 for U.S. citizens who don't furnish Social Security or tax identification numbers.
For non–residents of the U.S., we must withhold 30% federal tax on any prize greater than $599.
At the end of the year, we mail each winner who has won $600 or more a W-2G form to use when filing his or her taxes.
- What happens if I win the Powerball or Mega Millions jackpot and die before payments are completed?
In the case of a winner's death, the Montana Lottery will continue to pay the annual payments, as scheduled, to the winner's estate, trust, or persons named in his or her will. Neither the Lottery nor the state keep the money.
- Where does the money go?
Since July 1, 1995, all revenue the Montana Lottery returns to the State of Montana goes to the state's General Fund. The General Fund provides money to programs for the general operation of state government.
- Who decides where the money goes?
The Legislature determines where the money goes.
- How long do I have to claim my prize?
For all lotto games, you must claim your prize within six months of the drawing for which your winning play was eligible.
For all Scratch games, you must claim your prize within six months after the announced end of the game. See the listing of Last Dates to Claim a Prize.
- Can Lottery winnings be claimed by mail?
Yes. All prizes can be claimed by mail.
If you do claim your prize by mail, we suggest sending your signed winning ticket and claim form to the Lottery by registered and/or certified mail. For validation of winning tickets, send to Montana Lottery, P.O. Box 6073, Helena, MT 59604-6073.
- What happens if I lose a winning ticket?
The Montana Lottery is not responsible for lost or stolen tickets. Protect yourself by signing the back of your tickets and include your address.
Remember: Lottery tickets are bearer instruments. Unless signed, anyone in possession of the ticket can file a claim.
- I can buy several Scratch tickets in a row and have no winners. Why can't the Lottery have more winners in a Scratch game?
A Lottery game is a game of chance. To ensure the integrity of the Montana Lottery and its games, the printing of winning Scratch tickets in a game is done randomly. We cannot program winning tickets throughout a game without compromising integrity. There are always winners in a pack of tickets, but even within a pack of tickets, winning tickets are printed randomly.
- What happens to unclaimed prizes?
All unclaimed prize money is transferred to the state's General Fund.
- Who can play the Montana Lottery?
You must be 18 years or older to purchase a Montana Lottery ticket. All tickets must be purchased from licensed Montana Lottery retailers.
- Where can I find the winning numbers?
Current drawing results are available from a variety of sources.
- From most daily newspapers the day after the draw.
- From many TV newscasts on drawing nights.
- By calling (406) 444-5825.
- From Montana Lottery lotto retailers.
- On the Montana Lottery website. HINT: Use the Quick Check to see the latest results for all games.
- By following us on Facebook and Twitter.
- By watching the Powerball and Mega Millions drawing videos online.
- Can I buy lotto tickets in advance?
Yes. We call this multiple draws. You can purchase Montana Cash, Powerball, Mega Millions, Hot Lotto, and Wild Card tickets in advance for up to 24 consecutive drawings. Tickets for 10 Spot can be purchased in advance for up to 28 consecutive drawings.
- Why has Montana joined other states in offering Powerball, Mega Millions, Hot Lotto, and Wild Card?
Jackpot sizes are based on sales, and with Montana's small population, there aren't enough sales to generate the large jackpots many Montana players say they want. So the Montana Lottery has joined with 40 other states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands in offering Powerball; with 41 other lotteries in offering Mega Millions; with 11 other lotteries in offering Hot Lotto; and with three other lotteries in offering Wild Card to be able to provide larger jackpots than the state could ever provide on its own.
- Can I buy Lottery tickets from the Montana Lottery through the mail?
No. U.S. postal regulations prohibit the purchase of Lottery tickets by mail.
- Can I buy Lottery tickets from the Montana Lottery over the Internet?
No. The purchase of Lottery tickets over the Internet would entail paying for them with a credit card. Montana law prohibits paying for Lottery tickets with a credit card.
- Is it possible to win the Lottery and remain anonymous?
No. In Montana, by law, your name, the amount won, and the town you're from is public information. It is not possible to win the Lottery in Montana and remain anonymous.