Powerball: What would you do with $400 million?

Dreaming of a jackpot

wtopstaff | November 15, 2014 12:42 am

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WASHINGTON – What would you do with more than $400 million?

Although more than 1.3 million people won anywhere from $2 to $2 million in Saturday night’s drawing, there was no jackpot winner. That means the current estimated jackpot is now $400 million and likely to grow significantly before the next drawing this Wednesday (Feb. 19), according to the multi-state lottery officials.

The cash value is about $227.8 million. Jackpot winners have the option of taking their winnings in annual payments spread out over a number of years, or taking the money in a lump sum.

The odds of hitting the jackpot – which requires matching all five numbers plus the Powerball – are about 1 in 175.3 million. (See 10 things that are more likely than winning the Powerball jackpot.)

Sunday morning’s WTOP Talkback question was: If you won Powerball, what would you do with it? Would you give any of it away, and if so, who would you give it to?

On the WTOP Facebook page, Barbara wrote, “If I won, I would give part to church, pay off all my debt, find a financial advisor to help me invest enough to live off the interest, and then give some to family and friends and some local organizations. But it wouldn’t be for everyone who just showed up out of the woodwork. And then I’d travel to all the places I’ve wanted to go. There is a lot that can be done with that much money.”

Michael wrote that he would give a lot of it to those in need: “The best part of having money is the ability and peace of mind to give it away. That is the most empowering.” Several people mentioned specific charities or causes.

The last person to win from the WTOP listening area was Dave Honeywell of Fredericksburg, Va., who chose to take his winnings in a lump sum of more than $136.4 million cash in February 2013.

The last person to win from Maryland had their name withheld for privacy reasons – that person also took the lump sum option of more than $81.2 million in December 2011.

A group of people who formed Rockson, LLC were the most recent winners from the District back in December 2009 who took more than $79.6 million in cash.

Several people in the past few years have won $1 million or $2 million in Powerball drawings from the District, Maryland and Virginia. Prizes start at $2.

Powerball is played in 43 states, the District and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Follow @WTOP on Twitter.

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