No Mega Jackpot win? Unclaimed prizes still available - CBS 5 - KPHO

No Mega Jackpot win? Unclaimed prizes still available

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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

Let's be real - odds are you didn't win the Mega Millions Jackpot. But all is not lost. You may still be a winner of a much smaller prize. Not everyone is picking up their chunk of change.

Since the previous drawing there is one Mega Millions ticket floating around out there that won $250,000. It was issued back in December. Four other $10,000 Mega Millions winning tickets are still out there too.

The unclaimed tickets don't stop there. At least five Power Ball tickets have also gone unclaimed with a cash pay out of $290,000.

"Unbelievable! People are insane if they have that much money they don't know that's theirs," said Lea DeSanti as she picked the numbers for her Mega Millions ticket.

"They should step up and claim that money," said Francisco Pedraza, who bought his ticket Friday afternoon.

Rachette Jackson says she would cash out her ticket right away if she found out she won any size prize. "I wish it was my ticket because I'd be claiming it right now," she said.

But the clock is ticking for those winners to step up.

"After 180 days, the winner can no longer redeem the prize," said the Arizona Lottery's Karen Bach.

She says people here in the state are pretty good about picking up their lottery winnings. But it's tough luck for those who miss the deadline.

"The money that would have originally gone to the player then reverts to an unclaimed prize fund," said Bach.

Benjamin Rosas used to forget to check his tickets all the time.

"I would find old tickets and I'd be like, 'You know, I got to stay on top of this because it'd be terrible if one of them were a winner,'" said Rosas.

Rosas stopped by he lottery office to check the 15 tickets he bought last month.

"Approximately 2 percent of all prizes here in Arizona go unclaimed," said Bach. She said about $12 million went back into the pot last year and paid for special services because of unclaimed prizes.

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