What if your life could completely change overnight? That’s exactly what happens to those who win the lottery in California. All it takes is a single winning ticket to transform someone into a multimillionaire overnight. But have you ever wondered about these lottery winners and what their story is? We’ve got the full breakdown of some of California’s biggest lottery winners!
When you think about major jackpot lottery games, what do you imagine? Most people think the only way to win big is to win a more traditional lottery.
However, it’s possible to still win it big with a scratch-off lottery ticket. And that’s exactly what Ramon Gonzalez discovered.
One lucky day in October of 2020, Gonzalez walked into a Cressey Store in Merced County. There, he ended up buying a winning Golden State Riches Scratchers ticket.
And we’re not talking small amounts, either. The winning ticket Gonzalez bought earned him a cool $5 million!
Armando Hernandez Robles
Gonzalez wasn’t alone in winning big in October of 2020. Another California man won a smaller (though still very substantial) award from a scratch-off lottery ticket.
Over in the South Valley, Armando Hernandez Robles walked into a Pixley Gas in Tulare County. There, he bought a winning ticket for the Instant Prize Crossword Scratchers.
The winning ticket in question was worth $2 million. Just like that, Robles was a millionaire!
Incidentally, have you ever wondered what happens to the gas stations and other stores that sell these winning tickets? The vendors for winning tickets get a smaller cash bonus, and the amount is dependent on how much the winning ticket was worth.
For example, the Cressey Store that sold the $5 million ticket got an award for $25,000. Meanwhile, the Pixley Gas received an award of $10,000.
When it comes to lotteries, many people tend to fixate on the jackpot prize. After all, the jackpot is worth the largest amount. But even when you don’t get the jackpot, winning a prize from one of these major lotteries can still make you very, very wealthy.
This is a lesson that Daniel Eusebio learned. Like many players, he bought a ticket from a humble location: a Chevron located within Contra Costa County City.
He was playing in a Mega Millions game whose jackpot was a whopping $447 million. And while Eusebio didn’t get the big prize, his winning 5/5 ticket was still worth a very respectable $2,390,663.
In this list, Joseph Escusa is one of the smaller winners. But he still ended up getting way more money than he put in by playing scratch-off lottery tickets!
One day, he was in Alameda County City and walked into a Karavan Liquors. That was when Escusa ended up buying a Mystery Crossword Scratchers ticket for $10.
It ended up being a winning ticket. And Escusa ended up transforming that $10 investment into a $750,000 prize!
Even among veteran lottery players, there are many different strategies for winning. For example, some people prefer to buy one lottery ticket at a time to keep themselves from spending too much money at once. Other people buy multiple tickets at once in the hope of getting lucky.
And that was the strategy that Jerrold Murray used. He had already bought three tickets and lost each one. But he still ended up buying a Set For Life Scratchers ticket at the Cigarettes For Less store in Auburn, California.
In this case, “Set For Life” ended up being a fairly accurate description. Murray’s ticket was a winner and he ended up getting $6 million.
And after the fact, Murray said in interviews that his original goal was to be able to retire within the state of California. We’re going to venture a guess that with $6 million, Murray will be able to retire in style and leisure!
To Lump Or Not To Lump
Obviously, $6 million is a pretty big chunk of change. While getting the winning ticket was the hard part, Murray then had to make another hard choice: figuring out how he wanted to be paid!
When someone wins the lottery, they can choose between two basic options. The first one is to receive their winnings in the form of a lump sum all at once, which is the option Murray chose. The alternative is to receive the funds over time in the form of an annual annuity.
At first, you might be asking a simple question: why would anyone not want their money upfront? As it turns out, there are two very different answers to that.
The first is that you effectively receive less money when you get a lump sum. This is because you are forced to pay taxes on your winnings all at once. But getting paid over time via annuities can help you (eventually) get something closer to the advertised jackpot.
Additionally, history is full of lottery winners who receive all of their winnings up front and end up squandering everything. By getting your winnings spaced out over decades (usually 30 years), you can look forward to a nice chunk of change each year, and it is that much harder to squander your winnings when you don’t get everything all at once.
Lottery Winners: Scratch-Off Tickets vs. Regular Lottery Tickets
One common question we get is whether you are better off playing the traditional lottery or playing scratch-off tickets. But the truth is that each opinion has different advantages and disadvantages.
With traditional lotteries, you may be tempted by the giant jackpots. But while these top prizes are usually bigger than scratch-off jackpots, you will have that many more people trying to win.
Scratch-off tickets, however, usually have fewer people playing. This means that even with a smaller prize, you have greater odds of actually winning something, especially with the right scratch-off secrets. And as our California lottery winners have proven, even scratch-off games can lead to multimillion-dollar prizes!
Lottery Winners: Developing A Winning Strategy
Now you know the story of some of California’s recent lottery winners. But do you know how to improve your odds of joining their ranks?
We specialize in tips helping you find a winning lottery ticket when you play. To see what we can do to boost your odds, just contact us today!