A person in Ohio just won the $372 million Mega Millions jackpot
OHIO — Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like a fat $372 million headed your way.
One lucky person in Ohio has won the Mega Millions $372 million jackpot (a mere $251.5 million if they want it in cash).
The winning numbers were the white balls 22, 30, 53, 55 and 56, as well as the gold Mega Ball 16.
This isn’t the first time there has been a whopping win on December 17. On that day in 2013, the third-largest prize in the history of the game — $648 million — was split between two winners from California and Georgia.
This might seem small in comparison to the biggest Mega Millions jackpot of all time, which was $1.5 billion. All of it went to a single ticket holder in South Carolina.
The jackpot has been growing since it was last won in Texas on September 24 for $225 million.
There were more than 1 million other winning tickets Tuesday night on all prize levels. Three winners from Iowa, New York and West Virginia each won $1 million, and another winner in Pennsylvania got lucky with a $2 million win.
The next drawing will be on Friday, when the jackpot resets to its starting value of $40 million.
How the winner will be paid
Mega Millions winners have two choices. They can either get paid up-front in cash or get an annual payout.
Before you go scrambling to get that cold, hard cash, hold on a minute. Winners actually get less if they choose to get all the money at once.
If a winner chooses cash, they will get a check for the amount of cash currently in the Mega Millions prize pool, which for Tuesday’s winner is nearly $251.5 million.
If they go for the annual option, they’ll get their hands on their entire jackpot amount, but will just have to wait a little while for all of it.
After an initial exciting payment, the winner can get 29 more annual payouts, each one 5% bigger than the next, the Mega Millions website says. This helps “protect winners’ lifestyle and purchasing power in periods of inflation,” says Mega Millions.
So Tuesday’s winner has a decision to make. But for now, they are probably just dreaming about a time when they are swimming in piles of their holiday winnings like Scrooge McDuck in “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas.”