A man won $22 million in the lottery and hid it from relatives and friends (9 photos + 1 video)

1 November 2023

What would you do if you won $22 million? Have you bought a new house or a new car? Throwing a big party for everyone you know? Quit your job and travel the world? A resident of Louisville, Kentucky, let's call him John, did none of the above. Instead, he decided to keep his winnings a secret from almost everyone he knew.

Why did he do this?

John called Dave Ramsey, financial advisor and host of The Ramsey Show, and told him the crazy story of his winnings and his thoughts on it.

— I won one of the lotteries held in several states, along with a group of work colleagues. I didn't tell anyone except my wife and brother. No one knows.

- How many?

— After taxes — about 22 million.

- Wow. Wow. How old are you?

— I’m about 50 years old.

- Fine. And you didn't tell anyone about it. Why?

- Well, after winning, the first thing I did was study this topic. And I learned about statistics like “one in five people lose their lottery winnings or go broke within ten years.” The stories of these people had one thing in common - if you tell too many people about your winnings, then too many people will appear at your door asking for one thing or another. They ask for handouts, expecting you to pay for everything.

“So my wife and I made a conscious decision to keep it a secret, and we continue to do so to this day.” Even our two teenage children don't know. I know it sounds weird, but we just don't want them to grow up and become waiters who wait for us to die so they can get our money.

- This is fantastic, man. I like it. I'm not against that.

“I want them to understand what they want to do in life, and start working, working hard.”

- Became someone.

“Then I’ll tell them.” I'm not going to hide it from them forever, but, for example... We didn't tell our parents anything. We had another incident about a month after we won the lottery. Hmm, incident. Not the right word, but okay. Anyway, my wife's great uncle passed away, he had no children, never married and left most of his inheritance to my wife and her siblings. So we were able to use that as a cover when we helped people. For example, “I paid for my mom’s roof repair.” I know it's very nice of me. And when she asks, "How can you afford it?" I just say, "Oh, it's Uncle Bob's money, Mom. He wanted us to do it."

- Uncle Bob's money is now at least doubled, which is great. Do you have a decent car?

“You’ll like me even more now, Dave.” My mortgage on my house was paid off before this win. My wife and I have no desire to move. Also, before winning the lottery, we paid cash for two Toyotas. And we still use them to this day. We don't want to change anything. Great cars.

- Fine. Are you still working?

- I'm still working.

- Do you hate your job?

- Isn't this a funny question?

- No, normal.

“Actually, that’s why I go there.” Because I like my job.

- Happy for you. I think it's worth continuing to work. Do you have an investment advisor?

- Yes. Yes. I have a whole team of them. As you can probably guess.

- That's right. I like what you do and it's no one else's business.

- That's right, that's what I hope.

“And I don't think you're acting like a hermit in a cave or a Unabomber or anything like that.” I think you are simply being smart because you understand that some people in your life may not be able to handle this difficult task.

- Yes. This is a very correct assumption on your part.

“And you’re doing them a favor by not burdening them, includingteenagers

"John" is a great example of what to do with a lottery win.

Financial management experts believe that if you win the lottery, you should try to continue living the same way as before acquiring wealth. This does not mean that you should not share it with anyone or that you need to keep the news strictly secret. You just need healthy boundaries around giving and asking on both sides. You can help on request, but you should not provide ongoing financial support. And, of course, if a large sum suddenly falls into your hands, you need a team of professionals who will help you manage your money correctly and invest it correctly. The main advice from professionals is to work on your relationship with money before buying a lottery ticket.

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