March 5, 2020
|Powerball News

Important facts about American Lotto

American lotto – The most important facts you should know

Lesezeit: 8 Minutes

In America everything is big. And American dream is also big. As the biggest jackpots in the world were won when playing one of the American lotteries, we can say that the American lotteries are also big. Do you know that Americans are spending more than $77 billion each year on various lotteries? Did you know that you can participate in american lotteries if you don't live in the USA or come from another country? How to claim the prize money if you win? In this article you can read about the American ‘Lottery’ Dream.

Did you know that Americans spend more than $77 billion each year on various lotteries? Have you ever wondered who gets to play the lottery in the United States? Can you buy US lottery tickets if you don’t live in the US or come from another country? What to do if I do not have a legal permit to reside in the country? Will I be able to claim the prize money if I win?


The lotteries in the USA are governed by the laws of the respective states and are operated independently of them. There is no nationwide lottery organization. Megamillions and Powerball, two major lottery games, are offered in almost all states that operate lotteries.


History and modern era of American lotteries

The first modern US lottery operated by the government was founded in Puerto Rico in 1934. Instant lottery tickets, also called scratch cards, were introduced in the 1970s and have become an important source of revenue for lottery companies.

By November 2019, lotteries had been introduced in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The first U.S. multi-state lottery game was held in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont in 1985. The Big Game (now Mega Millions), another joint lottery, was founded in 1996 by six other lottery companies.

Since November 2019, each of the 44 state lotteries has offered both Mega Millions and Powerball as a result of a 2009 agreement between the Mega Millions consortium and the MUSL organization.


Government revenue

State lotteries have become a significant source of revenue for the states as they generated $17.6 billion in profits for state budgets in fiscal 2009, with 11 states generating more revenue from their state lottery than from their state corporate income tax in fiscal 2009.


States that do not have lotteries

There are still several states where lotteries are not offered. In Alabama and Utah, for example, there are no lotteries for religious reasons. Nevada’s lucrative gambling industry has resisted a state lottery for fear of competition, so no state lottery is available there.


Can I play American lotteries from Germany, Austria or Switzerland?

Of course everyone has the possibility to play American online lotteries, such as Powerball, through a provider like Lottostar24. However, in case you win, you should still have the taxation in mind. You can read more about the taxation of a Powerball win in our article.

You can buy US lottery tickets, win the Powerball and the Mega Millions lottery and collect your jackpot, regardless of your residence status in the USA. You only need to be at least 18 years old to play. You can buy lottery tickets in any state that offers the lottery, even if you are not a citizen of the United States or do not live in the state that sells the ticket. You can also participate in the lottery if you are not a resident of the United States.

And, of course, since non-U.S. residents are also eligible to purchase the tickets, they are also entitled to the prize money if they win. However, you should be aware that your place of residence has an influence on what happens if you win. For example, different states have different rules on whether lottery winners can remain anonymous. Countries outside the United States have different laws on how lottery prizes are taxed and how much money is withheld from your winnings. If you win, discuss these issues with a tax expert.

Playing Powerball from foreign countries
Playing Powerball from foreign countries | Sources:


What is a lump sum payment?

A lump sum payment is equivalent to a one-time payment and, in addition to the payment by installments, is another way of receiving a prize from an American lottery

Here is a practical example: You have won a huge lottery jackpot? What should you do now? Is it better to take the lump sum cash payment or the pension paid out over 25 to 30 years? The answer is very simple: it depends on your health and how well you know each other. It also depends on who might come by and ask for help and what you plan to do with the money. Both options have considerable advantages and disadvantages, and there are many questions that need to be asked before a good decision can be made.


Can a lump sum payment protect your assets?

If someone wins the lottery and claims a lump sum, it is tempting to help your “family and friends”. But unfortunately this is usually how bankruptcy begins. If you take the lifelong pension income source instead of the lump sum, you set deliberate limits because your resources are limited. It may be that every year for the rest of your life people will be at your door when the pension payment is due, but at least you are less likely to make the impulsive mistake of being generous, which you may not be able to afford in the long run.

In addition, the publicity surrounding big jackpot winners makes you more vulnerable to scammers trying to get their money.

The two largest lotteries offering annuities are Powerball and Megamillions. Regardless of the lottery and which payment option a player chooses, their lottery winnings are subject to a U.S. federal tax of 30% in addition to possible state and local taxes.


Lump sum principle vs. pension income

Powerball players at LottoStar24 also have the option of choosing between a lump sum payment or a pension income.

Lump sums are a strong temptation to spend, so choosing this option requires a strong will and solid money management skills. If you are more the type to spend money when you have it, retirement may be the better option. Even if it offers a lower return, you are guaranteed a long-term money blessing.

Which American lottery is the best?

The largest American lotteries are the so-called Multi-State lotteries which are organized by the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL).


Powerball is an American lottery game offered by 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. It is coordinated by a non-profit organization called the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL). Powerball’s pension is paid in 30 graduated installments, or winners can choose a lump sum payment instead. A lump sum payment will be less than the sum of the 30 annual payments due to the time value of the money and also because a cheque for a much larger sum will be taxed at a higher rate than 30 cheques each with a much lower amount.

The Powerball drawings take place every Wednesday and Saturday evening at 22:59 (EST). The drawings are usually held at the Florida Lottery studio in Tallahassee. The game uses a 5/69 (white balls) + 1/26 (Powerballs) matrix from which the winning numbers are selected.

Our tip: You can try playing American Lotto Powerball. Thanks to our voucher you can win our lotto voucher and get 2 lotto fields for the price of 1,00 €:

Mega Millions

Mega Millions is an American lottery game which will be offered in 45 states, the District of Columbia and the US Virgin Islands from 30 January 2020. The first (The Big Game) Mega Millions drawing took place in 2002. What is now Mega Millions was originally offered in six states. The logo game consists of a gold-colored ball with six stars representing the initial membership in the game, with some lotteries incorporating their respective logos into the ball.

Mega Millions is drawn at 11pm EST on Tuesday and Friday nights (including holidays). The Mega Millions drawings will take place at WSB-TV’s studios in Atlanta, Georgia, which are supervised by the Georgia Lottery.


Cash4Life is an American lottery game. It has been offered by nine state lotteries since July 1, 2019 and is drawn at night. Ticket sales began on June 13, 2014 in New York and New Jersey. The first draw took place three days later. Players choose five white balls with the numbers 1 to 60 in the main field, plus a number from 1 to 4 from the second field, the green “cash ball”. If you are interested in more information about Cash4Life, you can find more details in our article.

If you compare these three American lotteries, Powerball is the best of them and is also recommended by the lottery professionals of LottoStar24.


Record american jackpots and winners until 2019

In the following list of the USA you can see an overview of Lottery drawings of $300 million or more with at least one jackpot winning ticket, where you can see that Powerball plays better because there are 4 winners among the top 5 winners.


Year Lottery Jackpot Cash Value Per ticket Notes
2016 Powerball $1,586.4 $983.5 $327.8 World’s largest jackpot
2018 Mega Millions $1,537


$877.8 $877.8 Largest jackpot for a single ticket;
2019 Powerball $768.4 $477 $477 3rd largest jackpot for a single ticket
2017 Powerball $758.7 $480.5 $480.5 2nd largest jackpot for a single ticket.
20012 Powerball $687.8 $396.2 $198.1

The following list shows an overview of all American lottery draws with a jackpot of $300 million or more that have been hit by at least one winner. It becomes clear that Powerball in particular often pays off. Four of the five biggest jackpot winners won their prize by participating in the Powerball lottery.

If you compare american and european jackpots, compared to Europe the USA Lotto winners win much bigger jackpots. The highest Euromillionen jackpots are €190M.

Would you like to try playing American Lotto? For example Powerball? With our random number generator you can try your luck together with the licensed provider of Powerball – LottoStar24:


We wish you all the luck when playing American lottery. You can fulfill American dream.