The winner took five months to claim the prize money
The biggest lottery win in South Carolina's history is $1.5B. The result of the lottery was announced in October 2018.
The holder of the jackpot-winning ticket was not known for the next five months. Finally, in March 2019, the winner came forward to claim their windfall.
The Mega Millions lottery winner had purchased the ticket from the KC Mart convenience store between October 20 and 23 in 2018.
“We are delighted that the winner is a South Carolinian and has come forward to claim this remarkable prize,” - Hogan Brown, the Lottery Commission’s Executive Director.
The winner did not want their identity to be shared with the public. Respecting the individual's wish, the lottery officials have not revealed the name of the lucky person.
The reward on the lottery ticket would have expired if the winner had not come out to claim their winning within six months of the prize declaration.
According to the reports, the jackpot winner let a fellow shopper go in front of them to buy the Mega Millions lottery ticket. It was purely out of courtesy while they were standing in line at the convenience store in Simpsonville.
“A simple act of kindness led to an amazing outcome,” - The Commission
Prior to this lottery win, the highest prize in US history was of $1.585 billion Powerball prize. The lottery was declared in 2016, and the prize money was divided among buyers from three different states.
The current highest value win also made $61M for South Carolina in the form of tax on the prize money.
The KC Mart store that sold the ticket received $50,000 as commission for selling the bumper lottery ticket.
“It’s exciting. Good for me, good for him, her, whoever it is,” - Chirag Patel, owner of the convenience store.
Why did the winner take months to claim the prize money
There was a flurry of speculations on why the ticket has not been claimed for months.
There were theories of the winner being a criminal and did not want to get into background checks due to their lottery claim. There were even speculations about the winner being dead due to a heart attack seeing the colossal prize amount.
Some even doubted if the lottery win was real or, Mega Million just made it up to sell more tickets.
However, the lottery officials did not release any statement on the actual reason for the delayed claim.