The First 5 Things You Should Do If (WHEN!) You Win The Lottery

Lottery TicketWhen local Westchester resident Kevin Buchanan, a construction work from Yonkers, bought a $20 scratch off ticket on Christmas morning he wasn’t expecting to win $5 million dollars! Deciding to take the lump sum payment, Buchanan ended up taking home $3.2 million dollars. Merry Christmas to him!

Buchanan has been very down to earth about his big win: he has decided to pay some bills, buy a home and splurge on a Cadillac Escalade. Early retirement? Not for this family man, he’ll keep on working.

The first 5 things you should do when you win the lottery:

1.      Take a deep breath and do not rush to make ANY decisions regarding this new found money. There must be many thoughts going through your head, many of which will be imprudent and financially unwise. Yes you should have some fun now with a portion of your winnings, but don’t rush to make huge life changing decisions with the bulk of winnings without a well thought-out plan.

2.      Meet with a CPA to understand tax ramifications of taking a lump sum now or a payout from the lottery over time. Get some advice on future planning, including estate planning so your family is provided for.

3.      Meet with an attorney to make sure your will is up to date and provides for your family according to your wishes.

4.      Find a trusted financial advisor. Your attorney and CPA may be good sources of referrals. Interview three different advisors before selecting one. This is important as you want your new found money to work for you.

5.      Realize how fortunate you are to be in this position. Find some causes close to your heart that you can make a difference for.

We at Herman & Co, CPA wish Kevin and his family the best and are proud to see he is making the smart choices and not fleeing these winter storms to hole up on some tropical beach….yet.

Contact Paul Herman at (914) 400-0300 for a free 30 minute no obligation consultation about your individual or business needs.

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Any U.S. tax advice contained in the body of this website is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by the recipient for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code or applicable state or local tax law provisions.