It has been quite a while since we have had a big enough Mega Millions jackpot to draw national attention. However, now that we have one, it sure is a big one that keeps getting bigger. Tonight’s drawing could award a projected $865 million jackpot. The interest in the game is so high that the jackpot estimate is a revision from the initial projection of $850 million.
Winning numbers or Jan. 19 Mega Millions Draw
Here are the winning numbers for Tuesday’s drawing:
Second-largest Mega Millions jackpot ever
The last time a Mega Millions payday exceeded $800 million was in 2018. This is the second-largest jackpot in Mega Millions history. It trails only the $1.5 billion payday of October 2018. However, if it is does not hit today, the next drawing will almost certainly boast a billion-dollar prize. Here’s a look at the three largest Mega Millions paydays:
- $1,537,000,000 on Oct. 23, 2018
- $656,000,000 on March 30, 2012
- $648,000,000 on Dec. 17, 2013
The largest payday for a New Yorker in the Mega Millions draw game was $437 million in January 2019. That is not to say New Yorkers are not currently winning big payouts from Mega Millions though.
Earlier this month, a New York Lottery player managed to match five numbers with the Megaplier, which resulted in a $2 million payout. In the previous drawing, a Hicksville grocery store also sold a $1 million winning ticket.
Be prepared to wait to get paid by NY Lottery
If you do happen to win the top prize, don’t think it will be an instantaneous payday even if you take the $638.8 million lump-sum payment.
NY Lottery claims centers remain closed to walk-ins and only available by appointment. If your winnings total less than $600, you can redeem them at your local lottery retailer. However, any amount above that requires an appointment. Availability varies depending on your closest claim center. Moreover, many claims centers are not available to issue prizes over $250,000.
Many lottery winners have had trouble getting an appointment. Another option is to mail in your signed winning ticket. However, to be frank, if you win this Mega Millions jackpot, you will not want to leave it to the mail in order to get paid.