The question of unclaimed lottery winnings, and what to do with them, is a question many lottery companies wrestle with…
Of course, it’s an even more sad state of affairs for the players, those unlucky ticket-holders, that have neglected to check their numbers or have lost a winning ticket.
Millions of dollars go unclaimed every year; these winnings range from smaller secondary winnings to huge jackpot wins.
Those of us who work in the industry are constantly amazed at just how many people place a bet, win a prize/s and then fail to collect their winnings.
Here are a few examples:
- In 2018, it was calculated that in the U.K. no less than £125.1 million in prizes won from lotteries remained unclaimed.
- In the U.S. even greater sums have been missed out on, with an estimated $2.89 billion going unclaimed in the 12-month period up to July 2017. A total of 167 Powerball prizes worth at least a million dollars each went unclaimed in the same year—that’s 167 millionaires who missed out on their chance at the good life.
But What Happens To All The Unclaimed Winnings
When a player purchases a lottery ticket in the hosting country—directly from the lottery organizer—there are laws and regulation governing how the winnings are handled:
- In the UK, lottery winners have 180 days to claim their prize
- In Ireland, the grace period is just 90 days
- In the US, it’s a different story. Here, winners have between 180 days and a year to claim their prize, depending on the state.
In the U.K. and Ireland, If the winner has not come forward, then all the prize money is distributed to charitable causes.
In the U.S., if no claim is made in the allotted time period, then the money goes to the state to be used in any way they see fit.
But what happens when a private lotto agent (companies that act as a proxy for a player in another country) holds a client’s winning ticket and that client fails to claim the prize?
What Do Private Lotto Agents Do With Unclaimed Winnings?
Because the international lottery agent is a proxy for their clients, it’s the lotto agent that technically owns the winning ticket. If after multiple attempts at contacting the winner fails, and as outlined in the companies Terms & Conditions, a decision must be made as to what to do with the winnings…
Back in 2008, during the recession, one of our preferred partners (Giantlottos.com) decided to do something different. Why not, they thought, hold a yearly raffle event and give away the year’s unclaimed winnings to one of their VIP players?
That was when the Unclaimed Christmas Raffle was born…
“Instead of padding the bottom line with unclaimed winnings, our partners are giving back to their most loyal and preferred players.” — Ross Fulford
How does Giant’s Unclaimed Christmas Raffle Work?
The Unclaimed Christmas Raffle is a yearly event exclusive to Giantlottos.com, and only VIP members qualify for entry.
How this raffle works: The Unclaimed Christmas Raffle is an annual event. The raffle’s prize money is funded by unclaimed client winnings for which the claim window has expired (T&Cs). Each year, Giant makes these funds available to VIP clients via this Christmas Raffle.
In early August, we open the jackpot with the first unclaimed lump-sum. On the first day of each month after that, we’ll add further unclaimed funds to the jackpot. The last batch of unclaimed winnings will be added to the pot on the 1st of December. The final draw day is on the 21st of December.
Only 20 entry slots will be made available and will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. When the final slot is allocated, entry will close, however, unclaimed funds will continue to be added to the jackpot as they become available.
It is free to enter and entries can only be approved by an official Giantlottos agent.
Entries will be manually added to your account. Please, confirm with your account specialist that you have been officially entered… if your entry is not linked to your account, you have no claim on the prize.
On the 21st of December 2022, one (1) name of twenty (20) will be drawn using a random name generator. Your VIP Account Specialist will notify you if you are the lucky winner and your winnings will be added to your Live balance once the legal formalities are finalized.
How Can You Enter The Unclaimed Christmas Raffle?
Well, you can’t!
Unfortunately, entry is only available to a very small private group of VIP members (20 max). There is no entry form on Giantlottos.com, participation is by telephone invite only…