Woman Refusing to Claim $560M Lottery Winnings Says She Made ‘Huge Mistake’

February 06, 2018Feb 06, 2018

It’s almost impossible to win a $560 million lottery contest and not have your life change dramatically. But for one New Hampshire woman, she so desperately wants to keep doing all the things she loves doing now that she has yet to claim her winnings.

The anonymous woman who is referring to herself as Jane Doe in court filings won the massive Powerball game last month, but she’s insisting that her name not be released, according to USA Today.

According to a statement, "She wishes to continue this work and the freedom to walk into a grocery store or attend public events without being known or targeted as the winner of a half-billion dollars.”

She is described as an “engaged community member” and wants to remain where she lives and quietly give back to “the state and community that has given so much to her." But the problem is, New Hampshire law requires that her name be made available to the public when she claims the money.

Last week, she filed a lawsuit against the New Hampshire Lottery Commission in hopes of circumventing that law. She says she made a “huge mistake” when she signed her real name on the back of her lottery ticket rather than using the only other option, setting up an anonymous trust and having a trustee sign it for her. She can’t remove her signature either because that would make her winning ticket worthless.

At the time when she signed it, Doe says she thought she was required to, the New York Post reports.

Executive director Charlie McIntyre says the lottery commission isn’t planning to budge, explaining that, “The New Hampshire Lottery understands that winning a $560 million Powerball jackpot is a life-changing occurrence. Having awarded numerous Powerball jackpots over the years, we also understand that the procedures in place for prize claimants are critically important for the security and integrity of the lottery, our players, and our games."

The state of New Hampshire has also warned the lottery commission to abide by the law. Only Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio and South Carolina allow lottery winners to remain anonymous, according to CBS 46. The Granite State is one of just a handful of the other states that lets you use a trust to stay anonymous as long as you don’t sign the ticket with your real name first.

The winning ticket was purchased in Merrimack, New Hampshire.

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