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Winner Forfeits Million Pound Prize

Winner Forfeits Million Pound Prize
Updated: Friday 17th July 2015

A lottery winner has forfeited a million pound prize by failing to make the required claim on time, and the chances of the player ever discovering their costly mistake reduce with every passing week. The prize, worth a precise £1,000,000, was won in the UK Millionaire Maker game on Tuesday 23 December, 2014, and the winner had until midnight on Sunday 21 June, 2015, to claim it. Unfortunately, that deadline went by without any such claim being made.

The ticket that had won the £1 million prize had been purchased in Leicester. Had the entry been purchased online it would have been easy for lottery officials to know who the rightful owner was, and that would have also made it easier to bring the win to their attention. There is no such ‘safety net’ when playing offline, so it is down to the player to notice a win and make any claim required before the deadline expires.

The Millionaire Maker game (which used to be known as the Millionaire Raffle) usually creates two winners of £1 million every week – one on Tuesday and one on Friday. A Millionaire Maker code is assigned automatically to any UK lottery player who buys an entry for the EuroMillions game, so that code needs to be checked as well as the main EuroMillions results. In recent times, the final Friday of each month has been declared a Mega Friday as far as the Millionaire Maker game is concerned, and on those days ten winners are created instead of just one.

All National Lottery prizes which expire unclaimed are handed over to the fund for Good Causes, so the £1 million that should have gone to the unknown winner in Leicester won’t be wasted by any means. More than £33 billion has been raised for Good Causes since National Lottery tickets first went on sale in the UK in 1994, but fortunately most of that has been raised through ticket sales, and not via forfeited prizes!

Commenting on this latest unclaimed prize, a spokesperson for the National Lottery said: ‘Unfortunately, I can confirm that the ticket-holder did not come forward within the deadline to claim their prize and has now sadly missed out on this substantial amount of money. To avoid this unfortunate situation happening again, I would urge all National Lottery players to check their tickets on a regular basis.’

The spokesperson continued: ‘We tried very hard to find the ticket-holder and it’s a real shame that they have missed out, but there is still one winner – the nation. This money, and all the interest earned over the 180 days, will now go to benefit projects all over the UK funded by The National Lottery.’

Whilst it is always disappointing to hear about someone forfeiting a lottery prize, this story should serve as a timely reminder for players to check their tickets promptly after each draw – especially since this Friday 26 June is a Mega Friday and the Millionaire Maker game will create ten winners of £1 million each!

Published: Wednesday 24th June 2015

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