What Happens If a Non-Canadian Resident Wins Powerball?
We’ve been seeing a lot of questions lately as to what happens if non-residents scoop the big Powerball jackpot. You may also be wondering whether or not these winners are subject to income tax.
Well, the taxability of lottery prizes that are won by non-residents typically depends on whether or not the winner’s country of residence has a tax treaty in place with the United States.
Who Can Play the US Powerball?
Is doesn’t matter where you live in the world, you can buy US lottery tickets and win lotteries like the Powerball and Mega Millions. While you do need to be 18 years or older to play the lottery, you can purchase tickets in any US state that offers the lottery or even online, regardless of where in the world you may be.
Since non-Canadian and even non-US residents are eligible to purchase Powerball lottery tickets, that means they’re also entitled to claim their winnings. It’s worth noting, though, that where you live affects what happens if you do win.
For instance, different states have different rules about whether or not you can remain anonymous. But countries outside of the US and Canada have different laws about how they tax lottery winnings and just how much money may be withheld from your prize.
If you are a lucky winner, it’s important to consult with an experienced tax professional for further information. Also, if you’re a non-Canadian resident and want to enter the lottery, be sure to check the rules for eligibility information before purchasing your tickets.
So, Non-Residents Can Win the Lottery?
Yes, even non-citizens can win the Powerball jackpot. In fact, anyone in the world can win a US lottery provided they have a legitimate ticket, either purchased in the States or online.
All non-citizen and non-resident lottery winners must follow federal law as well as the law of the state in which the winning ticket was bought.
Non-American citizen lottery winners must pay a 30% federal tax, along with whatever the state tax is. Also, winners may be required to pay tax from their country of citizenship for their prize winnings.
Can Illegal Immigrants Play and Win Powerball?
We really do mean it when we say that everyone can play and win Powerball. There are absolutely no residency restrictions about who can enter the lottery, which means illegal immigrants are perfectly entitled to buy tickets and claim winnings.
But it can be a little more complicated, leaving an illegal immigrant lottery winner vulnerable to deportation. This was the case in 2011 when Jose Antonio Cua-Toc scooped a $750,000 lottery win and was scared to claim it has he didn’t have legal residency status. So, he asked his boss to claim it for him and the boss ended up keeping all the money for himself.
On the upside, winning a lottery could well smooth the path for a green card. If a winner is an illegal immigrant and wins the lottery, it’s important to consult a legal professional before claiming the prize.
Do You Need Identification to Claim Winning Powerball Tickets?
If you’re wondering whether or not you need to show your ID to claim your winnings, it’s a bit of grey area. It actually varies from one state to the next, according to the lottery and also according to the prize amounts.
Most prizes under $600 don’t require you to produce any form of ID to claim your winnings.
All you need to do is sign the back of your ticket and take it to an official lottery retailer or send it off to the relevant lottery office to receive your winnings. For prizes over the amount of $600, you will need to present some form of identification, like an ID card, driver’s license or passport.
You Could Be Next
Since anyone, anywhere in the world can win Powerball, provided you’re 18 years or older, you never know – you might just be the next big winner!
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Ever wondered if non-Canadian citizens can play Powerball? And what happens if they win? Read on to find out everything you need to know!
Can canadian win powerball
With a jackpot prize of $1.6 billion, the US Powerball is the most lucrative lottery completion in the world. Obviously, you would expect the majority of the players and subsequent winners to be American. However, it is possible for non-US citizens to play and win the Powerball lottery.
In February 2016, a lucky Canadian gambler identified as P won $1 million from Powerball. He might have missed out on the $1.6 billion jackpot, but the Quebec resident was still pleased to walk home a million dollars richer.
How P Won $1 Million in the US Powerball
As expected, the prospect of being a billionaire was way too exciting to forego. Because nobody had won the Powerball jackpot for a long period, it had increased to over $1 billion. Like many other non-Americans, P was skeptical about his eligibility for the Powerball draw.
After researching on the internet, P established that it was indeed possible for a Canadian to participate in the Powerball lottery. There is no legal requirement that a winner must be a US citizen in order to pick up a prize, so Canadians are free to enter and win without any issues.
On January 13, 2016, the $1.6 billion jackpot prize was won, but P wasn’t among the winners. He was a bit disappointed and tried to give it a second shot. A month later, he used the quick pick option to choose his lucky numbers and waited for the draw. The following morning, he discovered that he had won the second prize in the US Powerball, earning him $1 million.
What Canadians Need to Know about the Powerball Draw
It is highly likely that many Canadians will be motivated to play Powerball following P’s success story. But before forking out your money with the hope of winning the jackpot, here are some things you should know.
Buying Tickets Online is Risky
In the US, gambling is regulated by state governments. This means that tickets can only be bought from licensed retailers and winnings can only be collected from the state in which the tickets were bought. This condition is reiterated by the official Powerball website.
US Laws Could prevent you from Cashing in your ticket
If you buy your ticket in the US and move back to Canada, there is a law that could prevent you from returning to America to claim your winnings. The rule, known as the ‘immortal articles law’, prohibits the import of certain materials such as lottery tickets from foreign countries into the US.
Your winnings will NOT be taxed by the Canadian Government
Should you win the Powerball, you will only be required to pay taxes to the IRS and the state from which you bought the ticket. Canada will not take a dime from what remains after the US government takes its cut.
You Can’t Win on Facebook…
As unbelievable as it sounds, some people fall for tricks claiming that you can win Powerball prizes on Facebook. According to the lottery’s website, such notices are fraudulent and should be reported immediately they are spotted.
…but you CAN Play Online from Canada
Sites like Lottoland offer Canadians the chance to bet on and win Powerball without the inconvenience of having to try and cross the border to pick up a ticket.
Despite the highly unfavorable odds, investing a paltry $2 for a chance of being a millionaire overnight is not a poor decision.
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Read the story of the Canadian who became a millionaire thanks to playing the United States’ biggest lottery: Powerball. We explain the legal status of Canadian Powerball winners.