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Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement
Old 04-12-2016, 07:52 AM   #1
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Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement

It seems like this would be the better way to go, rather than working for so many years.

It does seem mostly older folks win the lottery...

I buy the mega-millions and PowerBall when the pot is ~$300M. Otherwise I just do it the old fashioned way. Although $1M isn't exactly striking it rich.

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Metro Transit driver Joseph Woods says his $1 million winnings are enough to go from semi-retired to really retired. Woods called Metro Transit even before he collected his prize Monday to tell them he wasn't coming in anymore because he had struck it rich.
Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement | KSTP TV - Minneapolis and St. Paul
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Old 04-12-2016, 07:57 AM   #2
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They don't really say, but if he truly won $1M, he'll be lucky to walk away with $350K between taking the cash instead of the annuity and paying the federal and state (7.25%) taxes. Hope that's enough to keep him rich.

I don't know if $1M is one of the annuitized winnings or if it's just a straight check for the total. But even if he gets the whole million, taxes will still take 1/3 or more. Maybe he doesn't need that much, since he's already semi-retired. Still, congrats to him.
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Old 04-12-2016, 08:30 AM   #3
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I would take the annuity on a smallish jackpot like that if I needed the money for retirement.

Why take a 40% cut for cash then pay another 30% to 40% in taxes? The annuity is probably $50k a year while the money left after taxes and lump sum reduction would be hard pressed to generate $50k a year safely. Inflation is low enough that it would not even erode the purchasing power that much after 5 or 10 years of the payments.

If you were to get $50k a year, you might be able to stay in the 15% bracket depending on filing status and deductions.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:11 AM   #4
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Up here in Canada lottery winnings are not taxed...if you win $1 million, you get the full $1 million. I know several people who would retire on that and live very comfortably for the rest of their lives.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:16 AM   #5
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Pretty sure that when you pick 5 numbers right and get $1M (and not the full powerball amount) you get the full amount as a cash prize less taxes. Yes, he will pay taxes and lose 30-45% but hopefully he will still keep $600k or so.

The article does say he was semi-retired already so obviously he has some other savings to go off of.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:26 AM   #6
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There's no age given, but there's a picture of him here: Metro Transit bus driver wins $1 million Powerball, retires | KMSP and he's not a young man. He probably should take the lump sum.
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Old 04-12-2016, 01:21 PM   #7
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I would take the annuity on a smallish jackpot like that if I needed the money for retirement.
The reason to take a cashout is that lottery winners are dead last when the state gets into financial trouble or goes bankrupt. Ask some of the Illinois prizewinners if they expect to collect their money.
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Old 04-12-2016, 02:02 PM   #8
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Up here in Canada lottery winnings are not taxed...if you win $1 million, you get the full $1 million. I know several people who would retire on that and live very comfortably for the rest of their lives.
The difference is just WHEN the gov't takes their share. In this case, the lottery would not be advertised as a $1 million lottery, instead it would be ~ $500K, after the gov't took their share first.
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Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement
Old 04-12-2016, 03:57 PM   #9
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Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement

So many of these stories end poorly for the "winners" that I almost feel sorry for them. Think how much thought and very careful decision making readers of this forum put into learning to manage the millions we've accumulated painstakingly. Money naturally wants to flee its owner and it takes tremendous effort and skill to keep it tamed and productive. To give someone with no training or preparation the responsibility of such a windfall is almost unkind. I sincerely hope the happy, and now unemployed, bus driver fares better.
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Old 04-12-2016, 04:10 PM   #10
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This lady seems to be pretty sensible about the tax free $50 million she won today. "Be independent and do what you want in life".

Grandma wins $50M - Kelowna News - Castanet.net
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Old 04-12-2016, 04:29 PM   #11
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If I won the lottery, I would spend half of it on cheap thrills, booze, and fast women.

And the other half I would spend frivolously.
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Old 04-12-2016, 04:35 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
If I won the lottery, I would spend half of it on cheap thrills, booze, and fast women.

And the other half I would spend frivolously.
That was my laugh of the day.

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Originally Posted by Markola View Post
So many of these stories end poorly for the "winners" that I almost feel sorry for them. Think how much thought and very careful decision making readers of this forum put into learning to manage the millions we've accumulated painstakingly. Money naturally wants to flee its owner and it takes tremendous effort and skill to keep it tamed and productive. To give someone with no training or preparation the responsibility of such a windfall is almost unkind. I sincerely hope the happy, and now unemployed, bus driver fares better.
I have also heard numerous stories of winners that ended up badly. I'd take the risk, though.

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Originally Posted by Fermion View Post
I would take the annuity on a smallish jackpot like that if I needed the money for retirement.

Why take a 40% cut for cash then pay another 30% to 40% in taxes? The annuity is probably $50k a year while the money left after taxes and lump sum reduction would be hard pressed to generate $50k a year safely. Inflation is low enough that it would not even erode the purchasing power that much after 5 or 10 years of the payments.

If you were to get $50k a year, you might be able to stay in the 15% bracket depending on filing status and deductions.
+1 I have thought the same thing.
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Old 04-12-2016, 05:15 PM   #13
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State lotteries LOVE these stories; it keeps the poor buying tickets. I agree with Markola; most of us here have accumulated our assets the hard way, dollar by dollar, day by day. We've seen markets go up, we've seen gains evaporate and then some. Most lottery winners have never seen $1 million and they think it will last forever and they can afford all the stuff they never could before. Too bad the follow-up stories don't get as much publicity.
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Old 04-12-2016, 05:28 PM   #14
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Hats off to semi-retired bus driver with untold retirement savings. With new winnings he can fully retire. Sounds like a great story.
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Old 04-14-2016, 08:05 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Senator View Post
It seems like this would be the better way to go, rather than working for so many years.

It does seem mostly older folks win the lottery...

I buy the mega-millions and PowerBall when the pot is ~$300M. Otherwise I just do it the old fashioned way. Although $1M isn't exactly striking it rich.



Lottery Win Sends St. Paul Bus Driver into Retirement | KSTP TV - Minneapolis and St. Paul

The only problem I see is that he gave notice at work before he collected his winnings. What if upon quitting his job and going to collect his winnings...."there was a problem with his ticket, the lottery machines, there are more winners, etc." Wait until the money is in your account. Then leave.
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:35 AM   #16
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The only problem I see is that he gave notice at work before he collected his winnings. What if upon quitting his job and going to collect his winnings...."there was a problem with his ticket, the lottery machines, there are more winners, etc." Wait until the money is in your account. Then leave.
I tend to agree. A bird in the hand.....

I'd jump through all the hoops, and once the check was cut and the money in my bank account, then I say "hasta la vista, baby".
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:45 AM   #17
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I never understood why people wait until the jackpot is hundreds of millions of dollars to play.

Their argument is typically I do not want to waste money on playing the loto so I wait until its a huge pot. Well...you're still wasting money playing period...so what you're saying is you'd rather not win a $70million jackpot but would be ok if its $400million? Wut

If im at the grocery store ill typically buy a ticket regardless of what the jackpot is at. I never look at the jackpot total so it could be 10million or 100million. I waste around $25/year.
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Old 04-15-2016, 08:09 AM   #18
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I never understood why people wait until the jackpot is hundreds of millions of dollars to play.

Their argument is typically I do not want to waste money on playing the loto so I wait until its a huge pot. Well...you're still wasting money playing period...so what you're saying is you'd rather not win a $70million jackpot but would be ok if its $400million? Wut

If im at the grocery store ill typically buy a ticket regardless of what the jackpot is at. I never look at the jackpot total so it could be 10million or 100million. I waste around $25/year.
Here is the logic. My numbers may be slightly off.

At ~$280M or so, the risk/reward is about 1:1. You have about a 1:280M chance of winning, based upon the statistics, so when the jackpot is near $280M, the risk:reward is near even.

Of course it assumes you are the only winner, and no taxes. And do not win smaller prizes.

I probably spend $20 a year as well. When I notice the pot that big, I buy 5 tickets. It may be $5, or $10 if they are $2 ea. What I win, I buy in more tickets back to the 5 ticket limit - if the pot is still big. If the pot has been won, I take the cash.
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Old 04-15-2016, 08:35 AM   #19
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I never understood why people wait until the jackpot is hundreds of millions of dollars to play.

Their argument is typically I do not want to waste money on playing the loto so I wait until its a huge pot. Well...you're still wasting money playing period...so what you're saying is you'd rather not win a $70million jackpot but would be ok if its $400million? Wut

If im at the grocery store ill typically buy a ticket regardless of what the jackpot is at. I never look at the jackpot total so it could be 10million or 100million. I waste around $25/year.
For me the reason is simple.

I know that buying a $2 lottery ticket is just a practice in fantasy and a fun discussion item with my DW. I'd rather only do that every once in a while when it's super big to add to the size of the dream. Plus doing it more than 1-2 times/year would take away from the game.
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Old 04-15-2016, 01:35 PM   #20
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I never understood why people wait until the jackpot is hundreds of millions of dollars to play.
It's because the tickets cost the same no matter whether the jackpot is $2 million or $200 million. It's about expected return. There is a point at which winning becomes a mathematical certainty (for example, there are 1 million possible number combinations, tickets are $1/each, and the jackpot exceeds $1 million), excluding the possibility of multiple winners. You just buy one ticket for every number combination.
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