COVID-19 continues to impact the world of Indiana gambling.
The Hoosier Lottery is the latest part of the industry to make some necessary changes.
The lottery joins casinos throughout the state, which have already shut down, and online sportsbooks, which have far fewer options right now with sports around the country grinding to a halt. COVID-19 has forced all three to mix things up.
The Hoosier Lottery’s changes kicked in as a result of the new executive orders from Gov. Eric Holcomb.
Holcomb ordered the shutdown of all non-essential businesses and government offices on March 23. With the lottery’s normal offices closed, lottery winners have to jump through a few extra hoops to claim their prizes.
The new process for claiming Hoosier Lottery prizes
Now that the rules have shifted, claiming a Hoosier Lottery prize is now a bit more complicated.
Lottery winners now have to claim prizes worth $600-$99,999 through the mail.
Since the Hoosier Lottery requires some confirmation to claim prizes, the new process involves filling out a form on its website.
To claim your winnings, you need the Hoosier Lottery’s winner claim form, IRS Form 5754, a copy of a government-issued photo ID, and a copy of the front and back of your winning ticket.
However, things have also changed for winners of huge jackpots.
The Hoosier Lottery has a hotline set up at 800-955-6886 to use for setting up appointments. Big time winners of $100,000 or more will have to call and schedule a time to redeem their prize.
Lottery winners now have up to 240 days to claim their winnings, which is a jump from the normal 180-day deadline.
How the changes compare to the Hoosier Lottery’s normal process
Usually, redeeming a Hoosier Lottery prize is a bit easier than it is right now.
The Hoosier Lottery has payment offices in Indianapolis, Evansville, and Mishawaka. Typically, winners can walk into any of those offices to redeem prizes worth $600 or more.
Winners still normally have to fill out some forms and bring along a government-issued ID, but the process is at least a little bit quicker since you don’t have to rely on the mail. Additionally, smaller prizes can be claimed directly from Hoosier Lottery retailers.
However, individual businesses can use their own discretion on the size of the direct payouts they want to give. Some will only cash-out prizes up to $25.
At least for now, the already-planned lottery drawings will not be delayed or canceled.
The next major lottery drawings will be the Mega Millions on March 27. The Powerball and Hoosier Lotto PLUS drawings will follow on March 28.