The New Hampshire’s Powerball winner, who sued the state lottery so as to stay anonymous to avoid unnecessary attention, just won the case. The winner, known only as Jane Doe, scooped America’s 8th biggest lottery Jackpot of CA$725 million in the 6th of January 2018.
After winning such a large amount, unlike most winners, she decided to challenge the New Hampshire’s lottery laws that state that a winner’s hometown, prize, name and surname must be publicised.
Details on the Anonymity Case
According to the court filings submitted, after discovering that she won, Jane Doe signed the back of the ticket as she believed it’s a pre-requisite for every winner to do so. However, after she had a word with a lawyer, she learnt that she could have used the name of a trustee instead to avoid the invasion of her privacy. In such a case, the designated trustee would have then claimed the lottery prize on Jane’s behalf.
Jane believes that publicising her name could have led to a substantial invasion of her privacy. She added that most previous winners had been victims of scams, threats, violence, and harassment and that is exactly what she doesn’t want in her life.
Judge Charles Temple of the Superior Court in New Hampshire ruled the case in favour of Jane Doe. This means that she gets to keep her privacy together with her winnings. In his final verdict of the case, the judge mentioned Jane met her burden of proving that her interests in remaining anonymous outweigh the public’s interests of having her personal details revealed.
Jane Doe plans to give a huge amount of her winnings to charity. She has already started making donations to Girls Inc. This is an organisation that focuses on empowering women. She has also given to 3 organisations that are part of ‘End 68 Hours of Hunger’. These are organisations that focus on providing food for the underprivileged school children over the weekend as they will not be having any access to the school meals.
The New Hampshire state lottery reported to the media that they were shocked that the Judge ruled in favour of the winner. However, the lottery officials mentioned that though they do not have an idea of who it was, the winner definitely has good intentions. Instead of receiving her winnings in small instalments, Jane Doe decided to collect a huge lump sum of CAD$463 million.