Unclaimed lottery winnings is a big issue for various lotteries around the world. These unclaimed lottery prizes are an even bigger headache for those unlucky ticket-holders who miss out on massive wins. With literally billions going unclaimed every year, ranging from small secondary winnings to jackpot prizes worth millions, it just goes to show that playing the lottery online is by far the best way to ensure that you never miss out on winning.
The National Lottery recently announced that there has been a massive £804m in unclaimed UK lottery prizes since the launch of the game.
In 2018 a staggering £100 million went unclaimed.
UK Lottery players have 180 days or six months from the moment they win to claim their prize.
Once this deadline is missed the money is donated to various charities associated with the lottery operator.
The UK National Lottery donates the unclaimed prizes to the National Lottery Community Fund. This fund goes towards helping local good causes and charities.
New figures have shown that the unclaimed UK lottery prizes have totalled over £800m in the last six years.
Unclaimed UK lottery prizes by year
Property developer and owner of Winmydreamhome.com, Marc Gershon, who conducted the research, said, “There has been a host of occasions where someone has defied the odds and won, but not come forward to claim the prize.”
“We could have delivered 3,000 new homes to tackle the housing crisis with the money that has gone unclaimed, but at least it has gone to a good cause instead,” he added.
Lottery officials suggest that winners who tend to forget to check their tickets should play online instead.
Europe's biggest unclaimed prizes
Apart from all the unclaimed lottery jackpots mentioned from the United Kingdom, there have been many other occasions potential millionaires have failed to come forward and claim their prizes.
The biggest unclaimed EuroMillions lottery prize totalled £63.9 million back in 2013.
Last year more than £12 5.1 million worth of prizes from lotteries and scratch cards went unclaimed in the UK.
Looking at Ireland, the largest unclaimed lottery jackpot was €3.4 million, having been sold in Coolock, Dublin. Even though lottery officials put out a nationwide campaign in the hope that lottery players would double-check their tickets and come forward, the prize went unclaimed.
Spain has its own problems with unclaimed lottery prizes. In July 2012, a single ticket won €4.7 million on La Primitiva.
Lotto6aus49 in Germany also had a substantial jackpot of €11.3 million that has yet to be claimed. The draw took place in April 2017. There's still time for the jackpot winner to claim their prize though, as the expiry date stretches until April 2020.
Biggest unclaimed lottery jackpots
The bigger the jackpots the more people play. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the lottery that seems to attract more unclaimed prizes is the record-breaking Mega Millions.
In 2002, a $68 million jackpot went unclaimed. The winning ticket was sold in the state of New York, as with the other major Mega Millions unclaimed wins, but the winner was never found.
In 2018, following a staggering $1.5 billion lottery win, the world waited with baited breathe to see who would come forward to claim the record-breaking jackpot win.
After several months, most lottery enthusiasts started thinking that someone must have lost their ticket.
But the winner, a South Carolina resident, finally appeared just a few weeks before the deadline, claiming a cash prize of just under $900 million and becoming the biggest ever lottery winner in the history of the United States.
Powerball eventually took the title of the biggest unclaimed jackpot when a single ticket from Georgia failed to claim their $77 million win. The winner had 180 days in which to remember they had a ticket, double-check and claim the win. Unfortunately, that never happened and they missed out on the prize.
No prize goes unclaimed at PlayUKLottery!
If the mere thought of leaving millions in lotto winnings behind you is causing you stress, then don't worry, as PlayUKLottery won't allow you to miss out on any wins, no matter how big or small they may be!
Smaller wins with PlayUKLottery are automatically credited to the winner's account, with an email sent out to confirm the win.
Should a registered player on PlayUKLottery manage to qualify for a prize, the winnings are automatically allocated to your winnings balance as soon as the draw results have been announced.
You will find several options for using and withdrawing your winnings.
Smaller winnings are commonly redeemed for play credits where you get an extra 25% top-up bonus, while larger winnings are withdrawn.
For players winning large amounts, our support services will be in touch with you to ensure that your winnings arrive as safely and smoothly as possible.
PlayUKLottery has maintained a 100% payout record to our winners. No matter how big or small your lottery or scratch card win - your prize most definitely will not go unclaimed!
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