- What is changing with Mega Millions in 2017?
- Beginning October 28, 2017, there will be an adjustment to the Mega Millions game that will result in
faster growing and higher average jackpots, making Mega Millions more exciting to play. As a result of these changes,
current Online Play (Subscriptions) and retail purchases for Mega Millions will only be able to include drawings through October 27, 2017.
Any previously purchased Online Play drawings dated later than October 27 will be refunded into the purchasing wallet.
The number of available draws for purchase will decrease after the completion of each drawing until the October 27, 2017 drawing.
After that drawing, all of the Mega Millions play options (up to 26 consecutive draws in retail locations and 52 weeks in Online Play)
will be available for purchase again.
Here is what is changing about the Mega Millions game starting October 28, 2017:
• The starting jackpot more than doubles from $15 million to $40 million resulting in faster growing and higher average jackpots.
• Each Mega Millions play will cost $2. Megaplier can still be added for an additional $1.
• Better odds for the $1 million second tier prize — now 1 in 12.6 million, previously 1 in 18.4 million.
• Third tier prize payouts double from $5,000 to $10,000.
• The choice of numbers will change from 1 of 75 to 1 of 70. Overall odds of winning a prize will be 1 in 24.
• The choice of numbers for the Mega Ball will change from 1 in 15 to 1 in 25.
- Where can I buy tickets?
- The NCEL currently has more than 6,800 retailers throughout North Carolina. You can recognize a Lottery retailer by the PLAY HERE signs that are posted in or around their store. To locate a retailer in your area use our zip code search for a list of locations near you.
You can also purchase single or multi-draw tickets online in Subscription Services with a verified players club account.
- Are prizes taxable?
- Yes. All prizes won are subject to Federal and State withholdings. For more specific information, please contact the Internal Revenue Service at 1-800-829-1040 or www.irs.gov.
- What happens if I lose a winning ticket?
- If you lose your ticket, anyone can claim it. A ticket is a bearer instrument until signed. Unless you sign the ticket, anyone else who has the ticket can claim the prize.
- How long do I have to collect a prize?
- For instant scratch-off games, you have 90 days from the official announced end of game. If mailed, the ticket must be received by the NCEL within 90 days. Postmarks will not satisfy this requirement. Online tickets (like Powerball) must be redeemed within 180 days of the drawing for which the ticket was purchased.
- What are the odds of winning a prize in the Lottery?
- The odds of winning vary by game and are printed on the back of every instant scratch-off ticket. You can also obtain the odds of a particular game by checking the How to Play section of this website or by picking up a How To Play brochure at your local retailer.
- What does “Overall Odds” mean?
- Overall odds provide the average amount of winning tickets per game. For example, if a game has odds of 1 in 4, which means for all of the tickets in the entire game, there will be one winning ticket per every four tickets. However, because prizes are distributed randomly throughout a pack, it does not mean that there will be a winning ticket every 4th ticket.
- How old do I have to be to play?
- You must be at least 18 years of age or older to play.
- Can I use a credit card to purchase lottery tickets?
- No. Acceptable forms of payment include cash, check, debit card, and gift card at the retailer's discretion.
- Can I buy lottery tickets through the mail?
- No. North Carolina Education Lottery tickets must be purchased either at a retailer under contract with the Lottery or online in Subscription Services with a verified players club account. In addition, federal law and postal regulations do not allow an unplayed lottery ticket to be mailed across state lines.
- Do I have the option of remaining anonymous with regard to the media and the public?
- The NCEL will consider a winner’s name, city/county, and the prize amount a matter of public record, unless the winner produces a valid protective order or Address Confidentiality Program authorization card.
- How can I claim a winning ticket?
- Claiming a North Carolina Education Lottery (NCEL) prize is simple. A winning ticket must be presented and verified in order to receive your prize. A NCEL ticket is a bearer instrument until signed.
• Prizes with a value of $599 or less, including free tickets, can be collected at any NCEL retailer or Regional Office, or by mail using a NCEL prize claim form.
• Prizes with a value between $600 and $99,999.99 must be claimed at NCEL headquarters, any NCEL Regional Office, or by mail using a NCEL prize claim form. Prizes of $100,000 or more must be claimed in person at NCEL headquarters.
• For all prizes of $600 and above photo I.D. and proof of Social Security number is required.
- Can I claim my prize by mail?
• Prizes with a value of $599 or less, including free tickets, can be collected at any NCEL retailer or Regional Office, or by mail using a NCEL prize claim form for Prizes $599 or less.
• Prizes with a value between $600 and $99,999.99 must be claimed at NCEL headquarters, any NCEL Regional Office or by mail using a NCEL prize claim form for Prizes $600 or more. Prizes of $100,000 or more must be claimed in person at NCEL headquarters.
Please complete a winner claim form. Then mail the claim form, copies of identification and your signed winning ticket to:
North Carolina Education Lottery
P.O. Box 41606
Raleigh, NC 27629-1606
Be sure to provide your complete name and address information on the envelope. The North Carolina Education Lottery Corporation is not responsible for tickets which are lost by the U.S. Postal Service or any other carrier. If you have questions on how to claim, please call Player Services at (877) 962-7529.
Players' Club, Lucke-Rewards, and Subscription Services
- What is the Players' Club?
As a member of the Lucke-Zone Players' Club you will have exclusive access to Lucke-Rewards, Subscription Services, second chance
drawings, contests, game alerts and promotions. And only Lucke-Zone members have access to comment on the NCEL Blog. Joining is easy and free!
- What is Lucke-Rewards?
With your players' club account, you can participate in Lucke-Rewards, where you can keep playing! Once logged in, visit Lucke-Rewards to
enter your eligible tickets using the appropriate code located on the tickets. Earn Lucke-Rewards points for every ticket that will show up
in your personal Lucke-Rewards account. Use your Lucke-Rewards points for entries into weekly and monthly drawings for cash and other prizes.
See the rules for Lucke-Rewards here.
- What is Subscription Services?
Subscription Services allows you to purchase multi or single draw tickets online for Carolina Cash 5, Lucky For Life, Mega Millions,
and Powerball. As a players' club member, simply upgrade your account information, complete the identity and age verification and fund your
online wallet to have access to Subscription Services. Purchases can be made using a VISA or MasterCard debit card or by direct debit from a
personal checking account. As an added convenience, you will automatically earn Lucke-Rewards points on your subscription purchase and no
additional ticket entry is required.
- What is the Players' Club Mobile App?
Once you're registered, download the mobile app to enhance your players' club experience! When you're logged into the mobile app you have full
access to your account, including Lucke-Rewards and Subscription Services, and many additional features, such as:
• Ability to scan your lottery tickets directly to the Lucke-Rewards ticket entry page using your mobile device’s camera. You no longer have to manually enter the 25 digit code!
• Customizable winning number and jackpot notifications for your favorite draw games — Powerball®, Mega Millions®, Lucky for Life®, Carolina Cash 5, Carolina Pick 3, and Carolina Pick 4.
• Purchase your tickets with Subscription Services.
• Easily find a lottery retailer near you.
Play at the Pump
- What is Play at the Pump and how does it work?
- Play at the Pump is a new convenient and fast way to play the Carolina Cash 5, Powerball and Mega Millions jackpot games. And it’s simple! Just swipe your debit card at the pump and drive away with your numbers for the next jackpot drawing. Right now Play at the Pump is available at a limited number of retailers, but more locations will be added over the next few months so look for it at your favorite fuel location soon.
For additional information on the North Carolina Education Lottery’s Play at the Pump program please visit www.ncelonthego.com/faq.