I’m a financial expert – my 9 tips if you win the Mega Millions $1billion jackpot this week & why you need to act fast

EVERYONE dreams of winning big when it comes to the lottery, but what should you do if you’re incredibly lucky enough to win the Mega Millions?

With a huge jackpot of $1billion, a financial advisor is sharing his tip on what to do next.

A financial advisor shared his tips on what to do immediately after winning the lottery

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A financial advisor shared his tips on what to do immediately after winning the lotteryCredit: AFP

Robert Pagliarini of Pacifica Wealth Advisors revealed his nine pieces of advice that could help potential lotto winners make smart decisions with their new wealth.

REMEMBER TO BREATHE

First and foremost, Pagliarini says you have to make sure you’re relaxed.

Winning the lottery is such an amazing feat, but it comes with very important, and quick, decisions and you don’t want your emotions to get the best of you.

“The last thing you want is your judgment clouded,” Pagliarini told the Boston Herald.

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DOCUMENT THE WINNING TICKET

“Take a photo of the ticket. Take a selfie with the ticket,” Pagliarini said.

“Sign it personally and keep it safe. Those are the things you got to do in the first ten minutes after winning.”

This is an important thing to get out of the way as quickly as possible if you want to claim that prize.

There have been several horror stories of people winning the lottery only to lose the ticket immediately after.

GET A LAWYER

“You’ll need an attorney to help you navigate these important decisions.”

This is another simple step as there are many decisions that have to be made after winning the lottery.

An attorney will have the knowledge to help you make these decisions.

KEEP IT A SECRET

Right after winning, it’s best to limit the number of people who know about your success.

“Only tell one family member that you won,” said Pagliarini.

He suggests not spreading the news on social media or within your own group of friends or family.

“So many emotions and anxiety will happen and you just want to keep it as simple as possible,” he said.

“Telling more people will only increase the anxiety, so you want to keep things very, very secretive, and keep things calm and simple.”

STAY ANONYMOUS

Some states allow lottery winners to remain anonymous when they claim their prize.

Others, such as Massachusetts also have loopholes to shield winners from revealing their identities.

“Definitely take advantage of that if you can,” he said.

LUMP SUM OR ANNUITY

According to Pagliarini, this one one of the most critical decisions throughout the entire process.

“You want a lawyer, tax advisor and financial advisor helping you determine what would be the better option for you.”

Pagliarini says that 99 percent of the time, lottery winners choose the lump sum but for others, an annuity – an immediate payment followed by 29 annual payments over the next 30 years – could be a better idea.

“It can be better for some people to spread out the dollars over 30 years because, with the lump sum, people can run out,” said Pagliarini.

“There’s no do-over with the lump sum. With the annuity, you can get a new chance every year.”

DON’T WAIT

If you’ve won the lottery, don’t take your time when it comes to cashing in the ticket.

“Do it as soon as possible after you get your team together and have figured out if you will do the lump sum or annuity.”

It may take a bit of time to get all of your affairs in order first, but Pagliarini says he errs on cashing in sooner rather than later.

TAKE A BREATH (AGAIN)

Once everything is settled, you can really relax said Pagliarini.

“Everything is stress up to that point. Now that you’ve actually collected the proceeds and it’s in a bank or investment firm, now you can relax.”

This is the time, according to Pagliarini, when you can figure out how you want your new earnings to improve your life.

MAKE A BUDGET

Last, but not least, create your annual budget.

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“The biggest fear almost everyone has is they’re going to blow it,” said Pagliarini.

“They’re going to run through the money and lose it all. Your advisor should help you figure out how much you can withdraw each year without burning through the principal.”

Make sure to document your winning ticket as soon as possible before cashing it in

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Make sure to document your winning ticket as soon as possible before cashing it inCredit: AFP

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