Expert: If you win Powerball, put together a plan, don’t come forward right away

While your odds of winning Wednesday’s projected $750 million Powerball jackpot are less than 292 million to 1, financial experts still have some advice for whoever does take home the prize.

First, wait a bit before you claim the money.

“Just to let the dust settle,” said Jeff Porasik, senior vice president of Raymond James Financial Services. “If you come forward right away and you don’t have a good team assembled then I think you’re going to have people coming out of the woodwork trying to get your money.”

Porasik said the winner will want to hire a financial adviser, an attorney and an accountant. He suggests to setting aside a certain amount of the winnings that you want to spend frivolously, and then figuring out how to safely hang onto or invest the rest.

“They have to think past themselves. They have to think about their children and their grandchildren and maybe their grandchildren’s children,” Porasik said. “That amount of money would provide for many generations of family.”

Decide if you’ll want to claim the prize as annual annuity payments or a cash lump sum, which for Wednesday’s drawing is projected to be around $465.5 million. Porasik suggests taking the cash lump sum so you can invest and plan immediately, rather than over the course of 29 years.

Finally, understand you won’t be taking the entire jackpot home. If you do take the cash lump sum, more than one-third needs to be paid back in state and federal taxes, which means the winner would actually walk away with $318 million.

 

Chris Watkins

Chris Watkins

Social Media & Digital Content Manager

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