Fri, May 3, 8:55am by Staff Writer
A near $5 million lotto prize that was unclaimed for more than a week has been claimed, with a young Dubbo mother coming forward.
A store in the New South Wales country town knew it had sold the ticket, but despite pleas in the news for the ticket holder to come forward, days passed with no winner.
Buying a lottery ticket always comes with a dream and the hope of winning a massive jackpot is the motivation behind the purchase.
Casino Australia is reporting that NSW Lotteries knew there was a winner when the Lucky Lotteries Super Jackpot announced its numbers.
They knew it had been purchased at the Talbragar Street Newsagency in the central-west part of the state.
The store owner, Peter Snare, entertained the possibility that the winner was only driving through town when they bought a ticket and they simply hadn’t returned to Dubbo yet.
The winner could have even gone on vacation before the draw.
“The excitement is creating a real buzz in the community,” Mr Snare said.
NSW Lotteries spokeswoman Lauren Cooney hoped that the winner would check his or her ticket after a long weekend.
“Maybe this player’s Easter break will be able to continue or the rest of their life when they realize they’ve won $4.92 million,” she said.
“We love delivering life-changing news, and we can’t wait to break this news to our latest division one winner.”
The young mother came forward after she had been joking with her family that she was the winner that the news media had been seeking.“Oh my god!” she cried.
“I just can’t believe it! We just went for a ride, and I popped into the newsagency to grab the paper for my dad, and I thought I’d better check my ticket!”
Once the reality set in that she was the winner of nearly $5 million, she noted that she planned to help her kids and “set them up for life” in addition to donating a lot of the money.
She admitted that it had been a tough few years for her family, but she also thought of others that could use the money.
“I will be able to do so much with this,” she asid.
“There’s so many people I can help,” she said.
The Dubbo woman has asked to remain anonymous for as long as possible.
It is rare for a lotto prize to remain unclaimed for more than one or two weeks, according to The Lott.
When tickets do go unclaimed for more than a few days, the Lotto publicises the situation as much as possible to bring the winner into the claims process.
Customers are able to check their tickets at the point of purchase, at other stores that sell tickets, through the Lott’s app or via its online site.
They must return to the point of purchase to make the official claim to the winnings.
The Lott finds that most people simply misplace the ticket temporarily or forget to check the numbers in a timely manner.
There are occasional reports of winners taking the time to hire an attorney or accountant before coming forward.
Huge Oz Lotto win still unclaimed TASMANIAN Powerball players have been urged to check their numbers this morning with one lucky punter set to walk away with a whopping… https://t.co/VYHoGEsvWh
— NetworkofNews AUS (@NofNews_Aus) September 21, 2018
However, most know there is no rush to take control of the money after their claim.
New South Wales players have up to six years to claim their lottery wins and it is the same in the Australian Capital Territory.
Queensland gives its players up to seven years, the Northern Territory only three years and Victoria has no time limit.
Residents in South Australia also have no limit to claim, as unclaimed prizes are put into a reserve after one year and can be claimed any time after.
Tasmania puts its prizes into a fund after six months, but they are still available.
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