A lottery club is a group of at least two people, who team up together to purchase tickets. If they win, they share the prize money. Lottery clubs are popular in Michigan as they offer some advantages of playing on your own. Some of the biggest wins in the state have gone to lottery pools.
How To Start a Lottery Club?
You can start a lottery club with friends, family members, co-workers or just fellow lottery fans. It is up to you exactly how you want it to work, but you will need a set of by-laws and to appoint a club representative at some stage if you want to claim any prizes you win as a group.
If you have a set of rules in place before you start, it helps to protect everyone in your syndicate. You know what to expect every week and there is less chance of disagreements breaking out. If someone is assigned as the manager or leader, they can be responsible for various key matters. Here are some of the key issues to discuss and decide on as a lottery club:
- You'll need to consider which lottery to play and whether you enter every draw, or just one a week
- Think about how you will select your numbers. It may be that you have one line for each person in the club. It could be the same numbers each time or a different set of Easy Picks.
- You need to ensure that each person pays for their tickets, and that you have a plan for what happens if someone doesn't pay on time.
- The tickets need to be purchased in time for each relevant draw. Decide who will buy them and where they will be stored.
- Make sure the tickets are checked after a draw. It is worth having at least two individuals who review the winning numbers.
- Decide who will collect any winnings and how they will be distributed between club members. You may want to pay out everyone every month, or save up for longer if you are dealing with small wins.
How To Claim Prizes
The process for claiming prizes as a lottery club is slightly different to the regular procedure, if you win more than $600. Go to the Claiming Prizes page for more information on what you need to do if you are playing on your own.
For a club that wins more than $600, you will need to notify the Bureau of State Lottery of all the individuals receiving a share of the prize. To do this, a Substitute 5754 Form needs to be submitted, showing the name, address, date of birth, phone number, signature and Social Security number of each member.
This allows each member to be issued with their own W-2G form, displaying their individual portion of the prize and tax information.
Clubs can be formed after a drawing date has passed and still claim their prize. For big group wins, only the name of the club and the person designated as the representative have to be revealed. This would theoretically allow an individual winner to form a club with someone else and claim their prize as a group.
Lottery Club Winners
A number of the Michigan Lottery's biggest winners have been lottery clubs. The largest payout in the state's history, $1.05 billion, went to a group known as the Wolverine FFL Club. The only member of the club to have their name disclosed was Florida-based estate lawyer Kurt D. Panouses, esq, who had been designated as their public-facing representative.
It was revealed that the club consisted of four members, including Panouses. They decided to take the cash lump sum of $776 million for the Mega Millions jackpot, which equated to around $557 million after federal and state taxes.
Benefits of Playing as a Club
Forming a lottery club can help you to shield your identity, as only the name of the group's representative has to be released. This is a great way to stay anonymous, in a state where the law requires the identities of Powerball and Mega Millions jackpot winners to be disclosed.
Another benefit of playing in a club is that it can help to improve your odds of winning. The only way to boost your chances is to purchase more tickets, but if you are playing on your own this also increases the cost of entry. When you team up with others, you get a share of more tickets while the cost is split between you. The winnings are also divided, but you can enjoy the experience together if you are playing with friends of colleagues.