NEPTUNE BEACH, Fla. – The winning ticket in Tuesday’s $1.58 billion Mega Millions drawing was sold at a Publix in Neptune Beach.
The prize was the largest in Mega Millions history, and now everyone is just waiting for the winner to come forward.
Prizes must be claimed within 180 days of the drawing, and because the prize is more than $1 million -- much more -- it must be claimed in person at Florida Lottery headquarters in Tallahassee -- even if the person who bought the ticket is from out of state. If the winner wants the single-payment cash option, they must claim it within 60 days of the drawing.
In Florida, Lottery winners cannot remain anonymous, but because of the size of the prize, the winner’s name will be exempt from public disclosure for 90 days, unless the winner waives the exemption. Find out more at https://www.flalottery.com/faq.
The Publix at 630 Atlantic Blvd. in Neptune Beach will receive a $100,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket. News4JAX asked Publix for comment, and we received this response from a spokesperson: “Thank you for reaching out. We do not participate in or promote lottery stories. Rather, we offer the lottery as a service to our customers.”
The winning ticket drawing ends a stretch of lottery futility that had stretched for nearly four months. The winning numbers drawn were: 13-19-20-32-33 and the Mega Ball: 14.
Before the big win Tuesday night, there had been 31 straight drawings since the last time someone won the game’s jackpot on April 18.
That enabled the prize to steadily grow to be the third-largest lottery prize ever in U.S. history and the biggest for Mega Millions. Mega Millions jackpot winners are so rare thanks to odds of one in 302.6 million.
The $1.58 billion payout would go to the winner if they opt for an annuity, doled out over 30 years. But people usually prefer a lump sum option, which for Tuesday’s jackpot is an estimated $783.3 million.
The prize money is subject to federal taxes. Many states also tax lottery winnings. Mega Millions is played in 45 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands.