Lottery winners could avoid the limelight

Local News

ILLINOIS (WCIA) — Winning the lottery can be a dream come true, but some say the publicity which comes with it can be a nightmare. Now, there may be a way to avoid it.

Lawmakers want to give winners a chance to stay anonymous. It’s about giving people a little privacy while their lives are going through a huge financial transition.

Of course, there are some who enjoy their 15-minutes of fame, but others dread it, fearing it makes them targets for theft and a slew of people with their hands out.

The proposal would allow anyone who winds $250,000 or more, a chance to keep their names private. Winners would simply just fill out a request.

Reports show lottery winners are often victims of attacks, financial scams and even murder. Those who support the initiative say it will add a layer of protection.

Six other states already have taken the move. Delaware, Kansas, Maryland and Ohio all allow winners to remain anonymous.

Officials at the Illinois Lottery explain why the information is made public. They say they are neutral on the bill and they make the information public to follow the law.

The bill was just introduced. Lawmakers will discuss the issue when they return next week.

Democratic Senator Laura Murphy, from Des Plaines, is pushing the idea:

If winners want to be identified, that’s one thing. But, the government should not require people to expose themselves to great personal risk simply because they were lucky enough to hit the jackpot one day.

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