After four months, B.C. lotto still investigating veracity of claim on record-tying $50M prize
Keith Fraser, Postmedia News
Friday, Jul. 17, 2015
Last year’s $50-million B.C. Lottery jackpot is still up for grabs.
Four months after an as yet to be identified person came forward to claim the Lotto Max prize, the B.C. Lottery Corp. is still in the process of verifying the bona fides of the claimant.
“For whatever reason, it’s taking longer than some of the other claims have in the past,” said the Lottery Corp.’s Ali Couch.
The claimant came forward in March, several days before the one-year deadline expired to make a claim for the March 16, 2014, winning ticket that was purchased in Langley.
The claimant’s ticket has been verified as authentic, but the process continues to verify the rightful owner.
In April, The Province, citing an anonymous source, reported that the claimant doesn’t want to be identified, has contacted a lawyer and is prepared to fight for anonymity in the courts.
But Couch said Thursday she was unaware of whether any legal
action has been taken to date.
The Lottery Corp’s policy stipulates that anyone who buys a ticket must allow their name and photo to be used before they can collect a prize.
Couch said she didn’t know how much longer it’s going to take for lottery officials to complete their verification process.
At the time the claimant came forward, lottery officials said that to that point, about $900,000 in interest had already been forfeited by the delay.
The $50 million is tied for the largest lottery prize ever won in B.C.; another Lotto Max jackpot of that amount, in October 2010, was handed out to Kurt and Claude Blanchette-Ebert of Vancouver.
In December, a Coquitlam drugstore employee sued a co-worker claiming that the co-worker in charge of a workplace lottery pool was in fraudulent possession of the winning ticket for the Lotto Max jackpot.
But in a response to the civil claimed filed in B.C. Supreme Court, the co-worker said it was all a big mistake and he didn’t have the $50-million ticket. That case has not yet gone to court.