1.5B Mega Millions 10-18 Payout

What was the total payout from the $1.5B Mega Millions prize from October 24, 2018?

The Mega Millions unclaimed top prize winner had 180 days from the winning draw date to claim the state’s largest jackpot winning ticket, which for that lucky winner it was a very good thing it was 180 days!

It wasn't until March 2019 when they finally came forward!

Yikes, that's cutting it too close to 180 days! One doesn't want to lose, or misplace a winning ticket with such a huge $1.5B payout!

In this article we'll also see what the Annuity Payout Calculator reveals about the Mega Millions winnings and the payout results! 😎

We'll make a payout comparison with two options to choose from:

The Mega Millions annuity payout results vs the lump sum option! Let's get started!

What were the 10-18 Mega Millions 1.5B winning numbers?
"The October 24, 2018 ticket matched all six numbers drawn:
5 - 28 - 62 - 65 - 70 – Megaball 5.
What MAJOR decision did the Mega Millions winner need to make? 
One of the first decisions the winner must make is a choice between the cash option of approximately $878 million or the annuity, the full jackpot amount paid out in yearly payments over 29 years.
When the winner finally came forward, this was their payout choice:
The winner elected to remain anonymous and has chosen the cash option of a one-time payment of $877,784,124. This is the largest jackpot payout to a single winner in United States history."
In my opinion, this fact; "The winner elected to remain anonymous..." is the best decision one could make when winning a large amount of money! And, the fact that they also chose to seek an attorney to represent them as they chose to remain anonymous was another very wise choice!

If you purchase Mega Millions or other lottery tickets:

Remember to always immediately sign your lottery tickets, even if you don't yet know if you won. Why?

Tickets are bearer instruments, meaning if you lose a ticket before you sign it, you no longer have valid ownership of the ticket.

The Mega Millions Payout Results - Lump Sum or Annuity?

Ever wonder what the payout would be if you won $1.5 billion? More about that in a bit, as we'll demonstrate the calculations.

Although, I'm sure we would agree, that the lump sum payout vs the annuity payout is a win, either way! However, if a person doesn't have good money management a huge lump sum could foolishly be blown.

If I had won, I would have made the same choice as the winner - to take a lump sum. Taking a lesser amount upfront to take control of the winnings in my book is the best choice, but that's me. What would you have chose?

Why would a Mega Millions $1.5B winner want to take a lump sum payout, rather than monthly payments from an annuity?

Let's look at some of the benefits of taking the lump sum lottery winnings compared to receiving it as an annuity:

In my opinion, these are the reasons as to why a lump sum would be best:
  • Although there is nothing wrong with an annuity as the $1.5B payout instrument, once the choice is made to enter into the annuity contract, you don't have full control over the annuitized payments.

  • By taking a lump sum payout (less than $1.5B upfront), it allows the winner to take full control of the Mega Millions with how they wish to invest it, and gaining greater growth. Ultimately, from the growth -gaining far more than the original $1.5B payout, and in a short time!

  • The opportunity for greater diversification of the investment provides not only greater growth potential, but also less risk through diversification.

  • With that large amount of money the winner could certainly leverage the winnings at a higher risk than what the lottery commissions annuity would have offered. We'll show you one way to do that.

  • With good management of the investment placed into areas such as the stock market, real estate, businesses, etc., the growth from those choices would soon exceed the original total $1.5 billion. Far more than what the lottery commission's annuity would have paid out.

  • The Mega Millions lottery commissions annuity payments would have been based on a conservative rate. Coming from a fixed annuity, the growth would have most likely been around 3% at most. That's not enough to even outpace inflation, averaging around 3% for over 40 years. May not seem to matter much when one wins $1.5B, like the lucky winner 10-18,  but if you have heirs why not secure their future too?

  • By taking a lump sum payout, the winner could still invest a portion of the monies into an annuity, but would have greater choices as to the type of annuity - offering greater growth potential.

  • Two types of annuities that would offer greater growth potential than a fixed annuity are: An indexed annuity, and a variable annuity. I mention that because it could be one method to far exceed to original $1.5B payout.

  • Taking the lump sum payout also provides more to give as charitable contributions, allowing the additional benefit of tax breaks!
Taking control is important, but for some taking the Mega Millions lottery commissions annuity may be a better choice.

It's of course an individual choice, and with $1.5B mega millions, the winner should always seek professional advice before they make any choices! Get the facts, the scoop and then proceed!

The winner of the Mega Millions October 2018 lottery made a very wise choice by first seeking professional legal counsel.

From there they would have most likely also then chosen professional Financial Advisors and professional CPA's to assist them with money management.

Now for the fun part: It's time to dig into the numbers!

Mega Millions $1.5B Payout Calculator Examples:

Let's take a look at how much the payout would have been had the winner decided to take the annuity option, vs the potential of the lump sum!

In order to calculate the payout for the 10-18 $1.5B prize, I decided to make use of an online calculator, rather than using my old financial calculator.

I wanted you to see the numbers within the calculator screenshots, and also provide you with the site to visit so you can do your own calculations with the variables you wish to implement. Much funner that way!

The calculator site I chose to use is also an awesome resource for any type of calculator you would need access to, and worked great for the mega calculation!

And, upon my request they approved for me to make use of screenshots of their calculators - thank you Henry over at Calculator.net! 😃

When you see the numbers for the Mega Millions Payout, it's a shocker to say the least! For starters - just the thought of winning $1.5 billion dollars is enough to make one faint! Can you imagine the shock the winner had!?

Annuity Payout Calculator Results for $1.5 Billion Mega Millions

We will demonstrate two calculations as follows:

  1. The first calculation: Will illustrate the annual income from the full $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot - had they decided to take the annual payments from the lottery annuity. But remember, they chose to take a lesser amount in order to receive a lump sum.

  2. The second calculation: Will illustrate the income potential from the lump sum payout of $877,784,124.00 - wow, that's a big number!

Before we see what the calculator reveals, I want to clarify a few points:

  • For the annuity option, the South Carolina Education Lottery stated the winnings are paid out YEARLY over a period of 29 years.

  • However, they do not reveal what the annuity rate of return will be, and therefore we have to take that possible variable into play.

  • I chose to use a 3% rate of return for the annuity interest, which is a realistic figure to use.

  • Inflation is also figured in at 3% due to the fact that inflation has averaged that amount for over 40 years on an average. With the exception of possibly hyper-inflated years, based on past track history 3% is very realistic to use.


While working on the payout amounts I was realizing how growth on the money the prize winner missed out on, by waiting so late to claim the 10-18 lottery! Lol - well worth the wait though.

The first calculation:

$1.5 billion dollar Mega Millions 10-18 jackpot invested in a fixed annuity over a period of 29 years, with annual payouts:
$1.5 B Mega Millions Payout Results for 10-18

Note: It's 29 years rather than 30 years because the winner would have started out with a single upfront lump sum check for the first annual payment of more than $78 million big ones!

The grand totals to view! Shocking, indeed! 😎

A whopping *$78 million + per year (More about the red * in a bit)!

Can you dig it? Oh, well no sorry, you can't dig up that treasure as it belongs to someone else, and I can tell you it wasn't me! 🙈 🙃

Such a problem to have: To manage $78 million a year!

Should you decide to take a break and head on over to do the calculation on your own, you can use the same Annuity Payout Calculator at Calculator.net.

Oh my goodness, those numbers were so large they made my head spin! *Did you catch the huge error I made?

Let's see if you caught this error:

The 'Starting Principal' for the calculation above should have been the $1.5 billion minus the 1st year payment the winner would have been paid upon claiming their prize (that is if they had taken the annuity option, rather than the lump sum option as they chose).

Ugh, when I realized the error I made, I decided to just leave it the way I have it since I would have to redo all of the images of the calculator and results!

Hopefully you don't mind the error too much, and now you know I freely admit my mistakes. 🙈

I think leaving the error makes this more interesting as it turns this article into a puzzle - lol. 🙃 Just kidding - okay, I'll compromise. Instead of making you wait to redo all my nice images with corrections, I've provided a written explanation with the corrected amounts below.

The $1.5 Mega Millions October 2018 corrected prize payout:

For those of you would prefer a written explanation, rather than an image:

1st Step -
Divide the 10-18 $1.5B Mega Millions prize by 30 years to figure out how much the winner would have received for the 1st lump sum payout upon claiming their prize, which equals $50 million big ones!

2nd Step -
Now we figure the remaining payout amount as the investment into the annuity, which is $1,450,000,000.

3rd Step - Using the Annuity Payout Calculator
Interest calculated on the 10-18 Mega Millions $1,450,000,000 balance at 3% interest annually, and at a 3% inflation rate (yes, I know it's a wash, but I'll still mention it so you know I didn't overlook the essentials).

*The corrected amount would therefore be a payout of:
$75,566,273.10 annually! (Yes, including 10 cents - lol)

After 29 years, $75,566,273.10 is equivalent to $32,066,273.10 in purchase power.

Total interest earned: $741,421,920.03.

If you wish to make a run over to Calculator.net you can play with the numbers on your own, but before you do stick around and find out what the comparison is as we move into the close of our article.

Moving right along, let's now do our comparison calculation!

Just to refresh, now we are going to demonstrate the PURELY HYPOTHETICAL calculation of just one possibility to what the winner of a lump sum payout might have done. Let's get rolling...

The second calculation for the 10-18 payout:

The winner of the Mega Millions $1.5B jackpot decided to take the lump sum, and according to the South Carolina Education Lottery, the lump sum jackpot would have been: $877,784,124.00!

Note, we will of course have to consider huge variables for this calculation as it will be totally hypothetical.

The variables:

  • We don't know how the owner will decide to invest the lump sum, nor how much of it will be spent, vs invested.
  • We don't know how many years a particular amount will be invested.
  • Because the winner chose to remain anonymous, we also don't know their age, if they have children etc, to even make a guess at the number of years. Again, too many variables.
Therefore, the number of years I decided to use for this calculation will be 29 years. Why 29 years?

Twenty nine years was the annuity payout period, had they taken that option for the full $1.5 billion jackpot; (the number of years from our first calculation).

Again, this is purely hypothetical!

With that much money they have many choices with how to invest, play, and how much to gift or give to charitable organizations!

In that there are soooo many possibilities with what one could do with that much money, if we chose to do multiple variables, well - I would never be able to leave my desk!

I would have to continue on into eternity typing and presenting the possibilities in this article! 🙃

Due to the fact that it was also the largest jackpot payout to a single winner in United States history, this article would end up being the longest written article ever on the internet!

That is - should I continue to add calculations and variables attempting to guess what they would have done with their Mega Millions winnings! 🙃

Obviously, I wouldn't want to put you to sleep either, so let's move on!

$877,784,124.00 Minus Play Money for Fun -
With Remainder Invested:

Decisions, decisions! How much should we figure they would use for play, and how much to invest?
The 10-18 $1.5 B Mega Millions Payout

Let's pretend they decided to set aside $100,000,000.00+ for play.

The remaining amount I'm just going to round down for investing a total of:


Phew, that's a big number! Did I get my zero's right - lol.

I then chose to figure an 8% interest rate. Assuming if a person invested their money into the stock market, an 8% averaged rate of return over a large number of years is possible. That is, if there wasn't any large losses.

Again, this is purely a hypothetical, and by all means not investment or savings advice.

If the Mega Millions Jackpot winner kept the $770,000,000.00 invested at only an 8% return on their money, and if they didn't withdraw any, we now come to the last of our calculations for the $1.5 billion dollar Mega Millions jackpot!

But first, I wanted to give you the opportunity to head on over to Calculator.net and do the calculation of the lottery winnings on your own, if you wish. There are a variety of ways you can calculate the winnings, but because I most often used my financial calculator to solve for future value, I chose to make use of their Future Value Calculator for the Mega Millions.

Now finally, for our last calculation!

What's the last calculation?

I would like to demonstrate from our hypothetical the schedule from the interest earnings from our 2nd calculation! Now this is interesting to take a sneak peak at the results.

The grand question is:

How many years would it take for the $770+ million lump sum to reach and exceed, the original total $1.5 billion dollar jackpot?

The answer is.... drum roll please.... only 9 years!

Future Value Calculation at Calculator.net
It certainly proves why it's great to take control of the lottery winnings!

Take the hit on the initial amount you won by taking the lesser lump sum.

Then grow it to an amount that will exponentially exceed what a person would have had if they had instead chose to take the lottery annuity!

Remember, in this hypothetical we were figuring they took a nice chunk to spend initially, but we didn't address taxes! Say what? Yes, taxes!

I'm not going to ruin our fun by talking about taxes - lol.

That's for another day, another topic, but taxes aren't anyone's favorite topic unless they work for IRS, so let's just skip taxes on the growth etc.

Avoiding Lottery Scams:

If you choose to play the lottery, play wisely! There are lottery scams a person can get caught up in. Some of those come via a phishing email, or a fraudulent phone call informing you that you won a lottery.

There are also the Nigerian scams where they inform you they won the lottery and need someone to help them accept the winnings - lol.

Keep your head on straight and ignore their bait! Recognize it for what it really is - a losing opportunity scam!

Should you chose to do additional reading from the links below, you can also read more about avoiding lottery scams.

Have fun, and good luck to you - to be the lucky winner of a winning ticket!

Related Reading and References:
(These links will take you off our site).

Where the 10-18 $1.5 billion dollar lottery was won:
South Carolina Education Lottery

Information about how the 10-18 winners won the Mega Millions:
$1.5B Mega Millions Jackpot Claimed by Winner