Lottery corporation looking for unclaimed prize winner

Jodi
Jodi Schellenberg
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There should be a new millionaire in Saskatchewan, but no one knows who it is.

Breaking news

An unclaimed $1 million prize has the Western Canada Lottery Corporation (WCLC) and Saskatchewan Lotteries searching for the lucky ticket holder.

“It is not common that they expire unclaimed and certainly not a prize of this size,” said WCLC spokesperson Andrea Marantz. “It is not really that uncommon either that people will sometimes take some time before they claim the ticket or will have put it away and have forgotten about it and not come across it for a few months.”

The winning Lotto Max ticket was bought somewhere in Saskatchewan, not including the cities of Saskatoon and Regina, on Dec. 20, 2013.

“It is getting to the seven-month point and we just would really like someone to take a look and come across it and come in and claim it,” Marantz said. “It was sold at a retailer in Saskatchewan that wasn’t in the city of Saskatoon or the city of Regina. We can rule out those two cities but it could be anywhere else in the province.”

The winning numbers on the ticket are 9, 17, 20, 27, 36, 38 and 42. No other information can be provided due to safety issues, she said.

That way if someone has a ticket they are not legally entitled to -- in cases of theft or criminal activity -- they can ask them questions about the ticket, such as where and when they bought the ticket and if it was a quick pick or their own numbers. After they run further data, they can determine if the prize belongs to that person.

Since the ticket will expire on Dec. 20, 2014 and the money will go back into the lottery pot, Marantz said they really want to find the ticket holder.

“We just wanted to shake things up a bit and see if anybody can go looking through their junk drawer or through their glove compartment in their car, or wherever they throw their lottery tickets and check them out,” she said.

Although most people are ecstatic to learn they won the lottery, Marantz said there are many reasons they may postpone claiming the prize.

“Sometimes people have other issues going on in their lives,” she said. “We had one young woman who knew she had won $1 million but at the same time she had a premature baby who was still in the hospital and thought ‘That is my priority right now. I don’t want to go through this exercise of claiming the prize until my daughter is out of the hospital and healthy and we can enjoy life.’ That made perfect sense to us.”

They have also had people who want to meet with financial planners or lawyers for help before claiming such a large prize.

“And sometimes people just haven’t checked the ticket yet,” Marantz said. “We did have one fellow and it was quite funny because he said he loved hanging on to that ticket because he could look at it and pretend it was the winner and thought, ‘As soon as I check it, I’ll know it’s not the winner.’

“Of course when he did check it, it was a $21-million winning ticket,” she laughed. “He had been putting it off for no good reason.”

Unfortunately WCLC has the record for the largest unclaimed jackpot of $14.9 million for a ticket sold in Alberta in 2006. Marantz said that is a record they do not want to hold and urges the ticket holder to come forward.

“We want to give this money away,” she said. “If someone does come across this ticket and is ready to claim now, they should call (1-800-665-3313).”

Organizations: Western Canada Lottery

Geographic location: Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Regina Alberta

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  • Pete Turner
    July 24, 2014 - 05:39

    There are just two essentials for playing the lottery: 1) Buy a ticket 2) Check it carefully right after the draw. The thought of being a lottery winner and never knowing about it is just too terrible. By the way, if you're interested, I've made up a little free and just-for-fun page which generates your own personal quick pick numbers. Who knows, it might work - you just never know your luck! As I say, it is free and just a bit of fun, so look out for VillaLibra Lucky Numbers if you want to see if you can locate it for yourself.

    • Peter
      July 29, 2014 - 13:25

      Pete Turner....Its everybody's dream to win a Lottery....Thank you for your creative approach that may work for some LUCKY recipient...if picking birthdates wins Lotteries ...then every little angle may be a ticket to easy riches and that we may share with family and friends to share the JOY OF WINNING.!!!