An unemployed Bronx man won a life-changing jackpot, but he doesn’t want to tell anyone about the good news.
But New York Gaming Commission says that’s not an option, and that the unidentified man will have to accept his $5 million mega check in front of cameras, the New York Post reported.
The 24-year-old man bought a $20 scratch-off in April, the New York Daily News reported.
But the state says winners of $1 million or more have to appear at a press conference announcing their windfall, and accept their giant check. Each ticket has the rules spelled out on the back, the Daily News reported.
The new multimillionaire from the Bronx tried to claim his winnings but was told that he had to be part of the press conference in his honor. But he told the New York Post that he doesn’t want his neighborhood to know how much cash he’s sitting on.
If the Gaming Commission doesn’t change its mind, then the man said he will sue to keep his identity secret, the Post reported.
Once he collects his winnings he wants to do something for his mother, who raised him as a single mother and who worked two jobs at fast food restaurants to pay the bills. He plans to buy a house for his mother and a second one for him and his brother to share. He also has a 4-year-old daughter for whom he will save some of his winnings. The man also says he’ll invest $1 million, the Post reported.
A lawyer who specializes in the lottery says the man’s case against the Game Commission may not be as easily won as it sounds.
“I think it is a heavy lift,” Jason Kurland told the Daily News. “But sometimes the lottery commission will work with you. If they determine his life is in jeopardy, they have the flexibility to revise their regulations. But it is very difficult.”
But it can happen.
Earlier this year, a judge in New Hampshire ruled that the winner of a $560 million Powerball jackpot could stay anonymous, ABC News reported.