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answered 7 burning questions about the Mega Millions lottery



With a $ 1.6 billion historic jackpot, all eyes are on the Mega Millions drawing on Tuesday night.

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But before you plan whether you want to buy or not a yacht in front of a jet, there are a few things to know about the game and your chances of winning.

. 1 How many number combinations are there?

The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 302,575,350, but there could be more than one ticket to win.

People can have the same ticket numbers. Someone could randomly choose the lucky numbers for them while another person could deliberately choose the numbers.

. 2 Can you increase your chances of winning by buying more tickets? Or join an office pool?

When you buy a lottery ticket, you have a 1

: 302,575,350 chance to win the jackpot. If you buy more tickets, you have more chances to win. For example, if you buy 10 different tickets, you have 10 chances to win – but that's still only a 10 to 302,575,350 chance.

Other people who have the same number as you do not affect your odds of winning, but they would affect the payout once you win.

Seth Elkin, a spokesperson for Maryland Lottery and Gaming, said they are very popular.

"We see many groups of co-workers, friends or relatives pooling their money to buy tickets, and that's a funny thing that allows people to draw with their fellow human beings," Elkin told ABC News.

  PHOTO: Group of people on a business meeting in an undated stock photo. STOCK / Getty Images
Group of people at a business meeting in an undated photo.

. 3 Are there any tricks to win?

According to officials, there are none.

"There are all sorts of ways to think about the jackpot, and everyone is always trying to figure out a trick to winning, but there's no trick. There are 302 million possible combinations of numbers, and it's just a matter of which is being pulled, "Elkin said.

4. Is it better to choose your own numbers or to get the machine for yourself?

It probably does not matter.

"We have no statistics on whether or not more jackpots were won with quick-pick numbers, or which were chosen by the winners themselves, but it really does not make any difference, and there are 302 million combinations, and it's only one Question of the right one, "said Elkin.

. 5 If you win, is it better to take the money option or the pension?

It is impossible to say with certainty that one way is "better" than the other, because the circumstances are all different.

One thing is certain: with the $ 1.6 billion jackpot on Tuesday night, the amount a winner takes home will be different if he chooses the immediate payout option or if he pays the pension if that Money is paid out in installments over many years.

The payout option means that the winner will receive an estimated lump sum of $ 904 million, while the person opting for the annuity will receive $ 1.6 billion over 30 years.

"A winner who enters into the cash option will receive a payment, the applicable federal and state automatic deductions will be made, and then the winner would be responsible for reporting the income on his annual tax return," Elkin said.

With the current jackpot of $ 1.6 billion, the first annuity payment would be $ 24 million, and the amount of payments would rise gradually, eventually ending with a payment of $ 99 million in 30 Years culminated.

"Most people, though on a large scale, are taking the cash option," said Carole Bober Gentry, spokesman for the Maryland Lottery and Mega Millions.

. 6 What can you win if you do not win the jackpot?

You can win even more prizes!

If you receive the first five numbers of the winning ticket, you win $ 1 million. And if you decide to spend an extra $ 1 to get a Megaplier ticket, your winnings will be doubled and you'll get away with $ 5 million.

If you get the first four numbers and the last number, you win $ 10,000, which can then be taken to $ 50,000 with a Megaplier ticket.

When the number of matching numbers on a given ticket decreases, the payout drops to $ 500, $ 200, $ 10, $ 4 and $ 2.

. 7 Which countries had the biggest lottery winners?

According to Mega Millions officials, the top nine Mega Millions jackpots in the US distributed 14 tickets, but they came from just eight states: Kansas, Illinois, Maryland, California, Georgia, Indiana, New Jersey and Florida.

There were several jackpot winners in four of the top nine jackpots. At the highest jackpot ever of $ 656 million in 2012, there were three winners from three different states.


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