If you played the Powerball Lottery game in Louisiana in April of this year then there is a chance you got very lucky. In fact, April of 2023 was a very good month for Powerball players in Louisiana.

The state had multiple winners in the multi-state lottery game. Among the largest prizes confirmed was a $ 100,000-thousand-dollar winner that was claimed just last week and a $50,000 winner which will go unclaimed if no one steps up with the winning ticket by the close of business today.

Arthur Humeau via Unsplash.com
Arthur Humeau via Unsplash.com
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You're probably thinking, how can someone just walk away from $50k? Well, believe it or not, folks have walked away from more.

What Are The Largest Unclaimed Lottery Prizes in U.S. History?

While $50,000 is a lot of money to simply walk away from it's not the most money a lottery player has allowed to go unclaimed. In 2011, in the state of Georgia, a Powerball ticket matched the numbers needed to claim the game's top prize of $77 million. It was never claimed.

In 2013 Powerball game officials said another jackpot winner matched all the numbers needed to claim the jackpot at the time of $50 million dollars. The ticket that was sold in Florida was never claimed and the money went back into the Powerball coffers. 

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If you do the math, that's $127 million dollars in Powerball wins that never made it home. Here is the official Powerball position on those tickets and any prizes generated by that game that go unclaimed.

Unclaimed prizes are kept by the lottery jurisdiction. If a Grand Prize goes unclaimed, the money must be returned to all lotteries in proportion to their sales for the draw run. The lotteries then distribute the money, based on their own jurisdiction's laws, to other lottery games or to their jurisdiction's general fund, or otherwise as required by law.

USA Mega via YouTube
USA Mega via YouTube
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That's according to the Powerball website. And while you might be thinking how can someone win millions of dollars and not know, it gets worse when you examine the unclaimed prizes leftover from the Mega Millions lottery game.

megamillions.com
megamillions.com
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Incidentally, Louisiana Mega Millions players don't have to worry about missing out on a jackpot, no one from Louisiana has ever won the top prize in a Mega Millions drawing. But in 2002 a ticket sold in New York did. In fact, the top prize was $68 million dollars. It was never claimed.

The following year, 2003, a ticket sold in Brooklyn New York was found to be a winner of $46 million dollars but the owner of that ticket never came forward to collect their prize. And in 2006 just one borough over in Queens New York another Mega Millions jackpot winner went unclaimed for $31 million.

Where Was the Unclaimed Louisiana Powerball Winner Sold?

So, you can see the Louisiana-sold $50,000 Powerball winner wouldn't be the biggest "D'oh" of the day. But if you did play Powerball for the April 22, 2023 drawing and you bought a ticket in Gretna at Magnolia Discount you're on the clock. You have less than 24 hours to contact a Louisiana Lottery office and make arrangements to get paid.

Courtesy Louisiana Lottery
Courtesy Louisiana Lottery
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By the way, there are currently $217 million dollars in unclaimed large prizes that the Louisiana Lottery is looking to pay out. One of those tickets is a $1.9 million dollar Lotto prize that was sold in New Orleans.

And in the heart of Acadiana, there's a $50,000 winner that is unclaimed that was sold in Opelousas for the Powerball drawing on October 9th and a $100,000 winner sold in Scott for the October 4th Powerball game too. If you played check your tickets and good luck.

And if you miss out on the money, well maybe that's not all bad.

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