A lot is going on in Louisiana this week. Lafayette hosts Festival International. New Orleans is hosting the Jazz and Heritage Festival. Arnaudville celebrates Etouffee with the Etouffee festival this weekend as well. So, it's easy to see how some details could slip your mind. But if it's a case of $50,000 in free money, I think most of us would remember to go pick that up.

ATM
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But that is not the reality for at least four Louisiana residents who found good fortune playing Powerball. The Louisiana Lottery has confirmed that they are holding more than half a million dollars in unclaimed prizes. Some of those big money prizes have only a few more days left before they expire.

Courtesy Louisiana Lottery
Courtesy Louisiana Lottery
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One Louisiana Lottery Game has Over $350,000 in Unclaimed Cash

The two largest unclaimed prizes are both from the Louisiana Lottery's Easy 5 Game. That game is drawn on Wednesdays and Saturdays and the premise is quite simple. The player chooses five numbers between one and thirty-seven. If the five numbers they choose match the five numbers drawn we have a jackpot winner.

Courtesy of Louisiana Lottery
Courtesy of Louisiana Lottery
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Currently, we have two unclaimed jackpot winners in the Easy 5 unclaimed vault. A ticket sold for the February 24th drawing is worth $106,947. That ticket was sold in New Iberia, Louisiana at Spanish Lake Truck and Casino. The other ticket was a big winner just a week or so ago. That was the $255,111 winner that was sold at Wilderness Acres in Downsville, Louisiana. The New Iberia winner will expire on 8.22.24 and the Downsville winner will expire on 10.14.24.

USA Mega via YouTube
USA Mega via YouTube
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When Will These Louisiana Powerball Winners Expire?

Four Powerball winners are on the clock in the Louisiana Lottery's unclaimed files. Each of the Powerball winners is valued at $50,000 and every one of those winners was purchased within 50 miles of I-10. A Powerball winner from the April 6th drawing that was sold at Lakeview Discount in New Orleans will expire on October 3rd of this year. Another $50,000 Powerball winner from the March 18th drawing will expire on September 14th. That ticket was sold in Metairie, Louisiana.

Louisiana Lottery officials have confirmed that two other $50,000 Powerball winners will expire in less than 90 days. One of those winners was sold for the January 20th drawing in Mandeville. That ticket expires on July 18th. And the remaining unclaimed Powerball ticket will expire in two weeks. It was sold in Baton Rouge at Speedy Mart on Harrells Ferry Road. That ticket becomes null and void on May 9th.

Pile of Money
Ingram Publishing, Getty Stock / ThinkStock
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What Happens to Unclaimed Louisiana Lottery Prizes?

The Louisiana Lottery addresses that concern quite nicely with this from their Frequently Asked Questions tab on the official Louisiana Lottery website. Here's what it says:

According to the Lottery's statute, unclaimed prize money is returned to players in the form of prizes and promotions, such as increased payouts on scratch-offs and additional second-chance promotions.

So, while we wish these winners the best of luck in remembering to claim their prizes it is actually in our benefit if they don't. But still, it's hard enough to win the lottery, it would be a shame if you lost your winnings because you forgot to go pick up the money.

Google Maps/Google Streetview
Google Maps/Google Streetview
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Speaking of how hard it is to win the lottery you know most tickets are not winners and you could lose money if you play lottery games irresponsibly. If you need help with your gambling or would just like to talk about the problem with someone who can help, help is available. Just call 1-877-770-STOP. The call is free and so is the help. Good Luck.

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