Q. How long do players have to claim prizes?
A. We give players 180 days to claim prizes, and on Jackpot game tickets, that 180 day clock starts the date of the drawing. For Scratch tickets, players often have more time to claim prizes, because the 180 day clock doesn’t start until our director officially ends the game.
Q. What happens if someone doesn’t claim a prize in time and the ticket expires?
A. Colorado has thousands of unclaimed prizes every year. Most of those are smaller prizes like $1 or $2. If we have a larger prize that is about to expire, we will try to alert the media and post on our social media pages to hopefully find the rightful winner. We do also have a link on our website for Unclaimed Prizes so players can see if there have been any unredeemed winning Jackpot tickets in their area, or maybe at the retailer they frequent. Unfortunately, there is no way for us to know where unclaimed Scratch tickets were sold. We encourage players not to wait and to check their tickets soon after purchase.
Q. What happens to unclaimed prize money?
A. Unclaimed prize money goes into the fund for our proceeds beneficiaries.
Q. Why do Lottery proceeds go to the outdoors and not schools?
A. The voters of Colorado made that decision in 1992 along with the creation of the Great Outdoors Colorado trust fund, which is our primary beneficiary, receiving 50% of our proceeds. That being said, schools in Colorado still benefit from the Lottery as any spillover dollars after the GOCO cap is met are distributed to Building Excellent Schools Today, a trust fund through the Dept. of Education. BEST funds capital construction on public schools.
Q. How many times has Colorado won Powerball?
A. Three times. The first was in 2007 with a $20 million jackpot won by a private trust in Westminster. The second in 2014 with a $90 million jackpot won by Claude “Al” G. in Rifle. The third was a $133.2 million jackpot won in 2017 by Judy F. from Clifton.
Q. How many times has Colorado won Mega Millions?
A. Colorado has not yet had a Mega Millions jackpot winner, but our fingers are crossed with every drawing.
Q. Has any Colorado player won the top prize in Lucky for Life?
A. Yes! Richard O. from Florence was Colorado's first top-prize winner in the Lucky for Life game in 2021. In 2022, Teresa M. of Aurora was the second player to win the Lucky for Life top-prize.