The thirteenth year was a charm for one lucky North Carolina man who used the same lottery numbers for more than a decade until he finally won it all on Friday.
William Goins won the $323,783 Cash 5 jackpot last week by selecting the same set of numbers he’s used for 13 years, he explained in a news released from the North Carolina Education Lottery
“They’re my lucky numbers,” Goins said. “They just came to me one day while I was filling out the play slip and I’ve been using them ever since.”
The handyman bought the winning ticket at the Tobacco Road Outlet in Southport on Friday evening, but it wasn’t until the next afternoon that he discovered he hit the six-figure jackpot.
“I just kept looking back and forth between the numbers on my phone and the numbers on my ticket,” he recalled. “I didn’t believe it. I thought I was seeing things.”
Goins claimed the money on Monday, pocketing some $229,078 after required state and federal tax withholdings. He said he planned to hold on to most of the money but will treat himself to a new motor for his fishing boat — especially since he plans on heading to the water more often after winning the prize.
“I love fishing,” he told the North Carolina Education Lottery. “Who knows, after winning this, I might make fishing my new full-time hobby.”
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The news of Goins’ lucky win comes the same week as a Missouri bartender wound up with a $50,000 lottery ticket left by a customer.
Of course, winning a large amount of money can be life-changing for anyone, but the moment can prove to be troublesome for many.
“You assume money makes you happy or takes care of all your problems. But money doesn’t do that,” financial planner Jim Shagawat told NBC News in 2018. “And it can cause friction with family and friends.”
To avoid these obstacles, the winner should first secure the ticket and retain the services of a financial planner, according to the Associated Press. The winner can step forward for up to 180 days or for up to a year after the drawing, based on the state’s rules.
Jason Kurland, a New York attorney who specializes in lottery winners told NBC News, “The biggest mistake I see is people who try to do this on their own right from the get-go. Those are the ones who put themselves out in the open, who can’t limit their exposure, and are now an easy target for people, whether it’s a bogus charity coming to you or someone with an investment that’s a [supposed] no-lose situation.”