Countless people who bought lottery tickets last week hoped they would win the Mega Millions jackpot which was above $400 million. There were no winners Friday night, and the prize will rise above $418 million for the Tuesday drawing. At that level, the odds of winning are approximately one in 302 million.
Lottery players frequently dream about what they’d do with a windfall of even a fraction of this size. That old boring version of the American Dream just cannot compete against the lottery. After all, it requires a lifetime of hard work, financial planning, advancing in your career and avoiding financial ruin. Winning the lottery changes all that in an instant, and no one even bothers to ask if you have a degree or how your credit report looks to get in the door.
There is a dark side to winning the lottery. It may seem impossible to fathom it, but some lottery winners who have become instant millionaires have somehow managed to go broke after becoming filthy rich. Some have even done it in just a few years. It may seem unlikely that winning $625 million could somehow let some end up back in the poor house. There are immediate risks that are the fault of the winners, and there are ongoing risks that wreck what should have become great comfort for your current and future generations.
24/7 Wall St. does not want to see anyone go broke at all. We took a look at the Powerball drawing in March to make an analysis.