RE: Lottery question for Rob

I too have had the fantasy of having a lawyer go down to the lottery commission and present my winning ticket for me. So it’s a good idea. My wife would not leave our house and neighborhood no matter how much cash she won in a lottery, but she wouldn’t want the neighbors knowing she had won because it would just be awkward. Every time we traded in your car, it’s “Oh … spending a little money, are we?”

“Shut up.”

“Okay, sheesh.”

Even if they didn’t say anything, you know they’d be secretly envious.

If I were the lottery czar in my state, I’d worry about authentication of the power of attorney. How would you know the lawyer really was authorized by the winner to act on the winner’s behalf unless the winner went with the lawyer in person and gave proof of identification in person? And then it would leak out who you were. The press would be ccamoed out there waiting for the lucky winner and his lawyer.

I imagine the lottery commissioners have all kinds of nightmare scenarios, like a lawyer hired by a greedy relative or thief who stole the ticket and has the winner chained up in a basement.

Why the anonymity rules? I imagine that’s to make sure that your creditors, especially including the IRS, and the women to whom you owe child support, get first shot at being paid, not only for their share of the winnings, but also for back taxes and penalties owed from prior years.

I seriously think the lottery causes as much problems as it solves. Maybe there should be some arbitrary limit, like 1000 times the value of the ticket price. And they could maybe have 50,000 winners dividing the 500 million jackpot maybe. I think that’s 100,000 each. Would you be more or less likely to buy a ticket in that case?

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