Almost $1 billion up for grabs in Mega Millions, Powerball jackpots

The winner of the Mega Millions prize could also opt for $281million payout as a lump-sum payment

Manager Jeff Green said almost all of the players getting lotto tickets are from Utah, since gambling is illegal in the Beehive State.

Two competing American lotteries - Powerball and Mega Millions - have a combined jackpot of over $1bn (£737m) after going months without a jackpot victor.

The jackpots refer to the annuity options for both games, in which payments are made over 29 years. The victor would take home a one-time, cash option of $347.9 million before taxes, should he or she choose a lump sum payment instead of receiving the prize in installments. Why did officials have to go making it tougher to win the Mega Millions jackpot-and up the tickets from $1 to $2 (the same as Powerball). Players choose five numbers from 1 to 69 and one Powerball number from 1 to 26. Mega Millions tickets are offered in the same locations excluding Puerto Rico.

"We drove all the way here to win the big jackpot", Hurtado said. "They've never both been this high at the same time".

No one has hit either jackpot since October, allowing the totals to balloon. The odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot is one in 302.5 million.

The Powerball draw, which takes place on Saturday, has its fifth-largest jackpot, standing at $570m (£420m).

"The largest Powerball prize ever awarded in Kentucky was $128 million several years ago to a couple out of Georgetown".

Follow the drawing, MLive will publish an update in the morning that includes whether or not anyone won the jackpot. The biggest Mega Millions jackpot was in 2012, when three winners split $656 million.

"People don't even realize there are secondary prizes", said Jacobson.

Jimmy Kied has never sold a jackpot winning ticket at Gabe Mart on Jones Franklin Road in Raleigh, but the store has sold several tickets that won smaller prizes, he said.

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