When Virginia’s lottery wins big, lottery officials worry about winners getting stuck in a bad situation
A Virginia lottery official said Monday that she’s concerned that winners who have been in a lottery jam for more than a year will not be able to make it to the next state’s lottery and will likely be stuck in the Virgin Islands.
“We know that a lot of folks have been out of work for a long time, and it’s time for the economy to pick up,” said Elizabeth Jardine, the lottery’s chief marketing officer.
“And a lot are not able to move on.
So we’re concerned about that.”
Jardine said she was notified by the state Department of Revenue that the lottery is having trouble matching winners with their names and addresses and that lottery officials have been scrambling to match them with the right addresses.
“The first thing that we do is we check the address and we try to match people who were able to complete the online process,” Jardee said.
“We don’t have enough information yet to know if people who weren’t able to go through the lottery and had not submitted a full social security number and were not able have their application approved.”
In addition, Jardie said that Virginia lottery officials are not yet sure how many people have been turned away because of a lack of social security numbers or addresses.
Jardee told ABC News that lottery operators have been overwhelmed with requests for information.
“This is not just a problem for Virginians,” she said.
“I think it’s a problem nationally.”
Jardson said she’s been unable to get information from the state lottery office about how many tickets have been sold in Virginia and whether people are in line to get in.
“You have a problem when there are people out there that don’t understand how to get to the lottery office,” Jardson told ABCNews.
“It’s not easy.
And we’re trying to work as hard as we can, but we can’t help but be frustrated with how quickly things are going.”
Virginia lottery officials say they have had more than 100,000 people signed up to win lottery tickets in 2017 and have made more than $10 million in sales since the lottery began in 2014.
Virginia is the latest state to be hit by a problem in the lottery system.
In 2017, California’s lottery had to shut down for the first time because of high demand.
California’s legislature, the state’s Board of Supervisors and the state of California all passed legislation that year that required the state to shut off the lottery until the state could fix the problems.