425 Million Jackpot Draws Hopeful Lottery Ticket Buyers
How To Survive Your Lottery Win! UNSPLASH

A 49-year-old North Carolina man who accidentally bought two identical lottery tickets, Scotty Thomas, hit the jackpot with both tickets in the Nov. 27 Lucky for Life lottery drawing.

According to the lottery, he had won $25,000 each year for life with each ticket. The prize is the Lucky for Life draw's second-biggest prize, behind a $1,000 a day for life payout.

Thomas wasn't sure if he had bought a ticket in the state's Lucky for Life lottery drawing, so he filled out an online form. "I was just laying in bed watching a basketball game on TV and I couldn't remember if I filled it out or not," said Thomas, who belongs to Fayetteville, according to a release from N.C. Education Lottery.

"I went ahead and filled it out again and the next morning my son asked why there were two different amounts listed. I realized, 'I think I filled it out twice,'" he continued. Thomas received two emails because he also bought the $2 tickets using the lottery's Online Play program on his smartphone. Winners get an email message to notify them when they win.

He recalled how surprised he was, and he had to lay down on the floor just because he couldn't believe what was happening. He treats this as a blessing.

The dump truck operator could choose either receiving $50,000 a year for the rest of his life, taking one prize as an annuity — $25,000 a year for life — and the second as a lump sum of $390,000, or cash in both tickets, and taking home two lump-sum prizes of $390,000 each.

He chose a lump sum of $780,000 for both tickets instead of annual payments, according to the lottery, because he wanted to invest in his business, pay off his bills, help his family, and possibly buy a house. After taxes, he made $551,851, as per the lottery.

Lucky for Life is played in several states, mainly in the plains and mountain states. To buy a ticket, you can visit gas stations, grocery stores, corner markets, anywhere with a lottery sign. You pick your numbers, or the computer can randomly select them for you for only $2 per game. The drawings are held every night for the whole week.

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