A LUCKY player has stumbled into a life-changing fortune after an impatient man cut in front of him when he was trying to buy a ticket.
The lucky 43-year-old said he’s planning on buying a family home with the earnings[/caption]
“It was the end of a long day, and I was tired,” the 43-year-old Delray Beach resident said.
“I stopped at Publix and was about to buy a ticket at the machine when a man cut right in front of me.”
He decided to change his tactics and go to the counter for a scratch-off rather than waiting for his turn – and he’s glad he did.
After claiming the prize, Espinoza said his good fortune is hard to comprehend.
“I can’t believe I won a million dollars,” he said, according to WFLA.
The lucky winner chose to take a one-time lump-sum payment of $820,000.
He and his wife plan to purchase a family home with the earnings.
The record-breaking prize was purchased in Altadena, but no one has claimed the cash.
The drawing was announced on November 8, with winning numbers 10, 33, 41, 47, and 56, and 10 as the Powerball.
The lineup was confirmed after an issue with security protocols delayed the initial announcement.
November’s draw was the world’s largest lottery prize, with the winner able to take home either a lump sum payment of $997.6million before taxes or an annuitized prize.
“The California Lottery does not announce or publicly acknowledge when someone comes forward to claim a prize,” Carolyn Becker, a California Lottery spokesperson, said in a statement to PEOPLE.
“That’s because our big winners and their prize claim packets go through a rigorous vetting process by our security and law enforcement team.
“That process can take weeks, or – depending on the circumstances – sometimes months, and we don’t declare anyone a winner until that review period is complete.
“This process is designed to ensure the legitimacy of the win,” she added.
Becker continued: “Also keep in mind that jackpot winners for both Powerball and Mega Millions have up to a year to come forward.
“And this particular win only happened about two-and-a-half months ago in early November.”
Experts say there are ways of increasing our chances of winning the lottery we’ve all dreamt of doing before.
And if you’re feeling lucky, the top five most common winning numbers were revealed, which have been drawn more times in the past seven years than any other.