Are you feeling lucky?

If so, you should try to win the lottery. The lottery is a great excuse to win some extra cash. Most players only win a small amount, but a few lucky players can win millions. And this has been the case with a few lucky players.

However, their luck inevitably ran out. They experienced misfortunes or just made mistakes that made them lose a decent amount of their winnings. If you plan on playing the lottery, learn their mistakes and don’t what they did.

If you so happen to score at the lottery, here are 8 mistakes you should learn from past lottery winners.

1. Don’t Give Your Winning Ticket to Anyone :

In 2010, Jose Antonio Cua-Toc purchased a winning lottery ticket. The ticket was worth $750,000. But Cua-Toc was an undocumented immigrant from Guatemala.

He was scared his identity would be exposed, so he gave his winning ticket to his boss.

Cua-Toc and his boss agreed that his boss would pick up the money for him. But here’s the catch: the boss never gave the money back. He took the large prize and ran with it. Fortunately, Cua-Toc was able to sue and get his money back.

2. Don’t Throw the Winning Ticket in the Garbage :

How often have you accidentally thrown out a few bucks, even a check, in the garbage?

It happens, but no situation was as bad as a couple who threw their winning lottery ticket in the trash. While grocery shopping, Joanne, and Joseph Zagami decided to purchase a lottery ticket.

They didn’t realize that ticket was worth a million dollars. After unloading their groceries, the couple accidentally threw the ticket out with the bag and the receipt.


Fortunately, they were able to recover the winning lottery ticket and become millionaires.

3. Forgetting About Your Winning Lottery Ticket :

Have you ever heard of Ron Yurcus? He had a $1 million lottery ticket — and he forgot about it. He never scratched it off. He just left it on his desk and forgot about it.

But three months later, he found it after cleaning his desk. From here, he decided to check the numbers. Fortunately, he was able to claim his million dollar prize.

But if he didn’t clean out his desk on that fateful day, he may have never known about his luck.

If you decide to buy a lottery ticket, immediately scratch off the numbers.

4. Steal a Car After Winning :

Money doesn’t cure everything in the world. Sometimes, people steal. Even when they have money. John Ross Jr. was accused of assisting car theft in 2012. But a few months earlier, he won $2 million in the lottery.

Ross admitted he had money issues. When asked what he would do with the money, he said he wanted to buy a car. At 29, Ross never owned a car. But rather than drive his sweet new ride, he spent time behind bars.

This story is a strange one — who knows where that $2 million went.

5. Gamble Your Winnings :

You can earn a lot of money when playing the lottery — just read more here and you can see your earning potential.

But some people have issues testing their luck. These people aren’t satisfied with taking their winnings. They need to risk even more, such as gambling. This was the case with Evelyn Adams in the 1980s.

She not only won the lottery once but twice. She won a total of $5.4 million.

However, Evelyn decided to go gambling with her winnings. While gambling in Atlantic City, she lost all of her $5.4 million. She did do some good deeds and helped out those in need. But she partied and gambled over $5 million.

Hopefully, she had a good time.

6. Open a Demolition Derby :

When most people win the lottery, they spend their earnings on obvious expenses such as a new home, fine jewelry or a car. But not Michael Carroll. In 2002, he won $15 million in the British Jackpot.

But what did you do with his earnings? Open a demolition derby.

In case you didn’t know, a demolition derby is an event where you smash cars into one another. The ideal game has one winner who’s left standing amongst scattered car parts — and hopefully no injured drivers.

His business — and his drug use — made him serve time in jail. Inevitably, he lost his money.

7. Don’t Get Your Ticket Stolen :

There are devoted lottery players, who regularly buy lottery tickets and try to win. And then there are those who prey off of lottery winners. They do what they can to steal the earnings, and sometimes even the winning ticket.

This happened to Etta May Urquhart. For 18 years, she tried to win the lottery.

One day, she won $15 million. To get her money, Urquhart allowed her son to claim her prize for her. But similarly to Cua-Toc’s story, her son ran with her prize and stole her ticket.

Urquhart had to sue her own son in court.

8. Don’t Spend Too Much :

When someone walks into a large sum of money, they can’t help but spend all of it.

When Billie Bob Harrell Jr. of Texas won $31 million in 1997, he first spent his winnings on expenses that helped him and his families, such as a new house and car.

But rather than stop there, Harrell kept spending. In less than two years after winning, Harrell was broke. It led him to commit suicide.

There’s one piece of advice anyone should take from this story: money can’t buy happiness.

Don’t Make the Mistakes Past Lottery Winners Made :

Whether it’s trusting a close friend or stealing a car, past lottery winners have made some pretty crazy mistakes.

If you’re someone hoping for the winning ticket, learn from these mistakes. While winning the lottery may be a dream, the lottery curse is real.

Be responsible, make smart investments, and you can live the life of a millionaire. If not, you could end up in jail or develop self-destructive behavior.

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Mashum Mollah is an entrepreneur, founder and CEO at Viacon, a digital marketing agency that drive visibility, engagement, and proven results. He blogs at