Mega Millions jackpot could reach $2 billion if no one wins Tuesday
The jackpot for the Mega Millions still stands at a world-record $1.6 billion with a cash option of $904.9 million, and if no one wins the jackpot after Tuesday night’s drawing, it could swell to an estimated $2 billion for Friday’s drawing, officials said.
Tuesday marks 13 consecutive weeks without a Mega Millions jackpot winner since the grand prize was last won July 24. The winners, a group of 11 co-workers in California, split the $543 million prize, officials said.
Sales for Mega Millions tickets sold in Massachusetts for Tuesday’s drawing totaled over $11 million as of 1 p.m. Tuesday, with $3 million of that sum coming from ticket sales on Tuesday alone. Those figures are expected to grow significantly by the time of the drawing, as the most sales always come on the day of the drawing, said Christian Teja, spokesman for the Massachusetts State Lottery.
By Tuesday afternoon, ticket retailers in Massachusetts were selling about 7,000 Mega Millions tickets every minute, Teja said.
Sales for Friday’s Mega Millions drawing, when the jackpot was $1 billion, totaled more than $16 million in Massachusetts — about half of the Massachusetts sales for the then-largest US lottery jackpot ever, a $1.586 billion Powerball prize, which was split among three winning tickets on Jan. 13, 2016.
Nationwide, ticket retailers sold about 280 million Mega Millions tickets for last Friday’s drawing, said Seth Elkin, spokesman for the Mega Millions.
The unprecedented jackpot for Tuesday’s Mega Millions drawing shouldn’t overshadow the $620 million Powerball jackpot for Wednesday’s drawing, which is the sixth-largest US lottery jackpot ever. The cash option is about $354.3 million, officials said.
The jackpot for the in-state Megabucks Doubler is an estimated $3.6 million, officials said.
If you bought a Mega Millions ticket in New England and win the jackpot, be ready to field questions from the media and from old friends reminding you of favors they did for you years ago. Only seven states, none of which are in New England, allow the winner to remain anonymous, Elkin said.
You will also have to decide how you want the prize money. If you choose the annuity option, you’ll get more money, but it will be spread out in the form of annual payments for the next 29 years. If you want the money now, you’ll still get close to $1 billion, before taxes, Elkin said.
Mega Millions and Powerball tickets are $2 each, and Megabucks Doubler tickets are $1 each. Tuesday’s Mega Millions drawing will be at 11 p.m. Wednesday’s Powerball drawing will be at 10:59 p.m. Wednesday’s Megabucks Doubler drawing will be at 11:20 p.m., officials said.
The results of the drawings will be available on masslottery.com, as well as on the Lottery’s Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages, officials said.