Powerball victor fights for privacy in NH

It isn't so much that she doesn't need it. "If you signed that lottery ticket, the Lottery and the ticket are very clear that if you won, you will be part of the Lottery's public-relations machine". But after the woman contacted a lawyer, she learned she could have protected her identity by instead writing the name of a trust. She says she was just following the instructions on the ticket and on the state lottery website. Be that as it may, a protestation documented a week ago in Hillsborough Superior Court in Nashua, N.H., says that was an "immense misstep".

In New Hampshire, the woman claimed she mistakenly signed her name on her winning Powerball ticket, making her identity public information. The trustee's name would then be the one to be released, and that could be anybody, including a friend or a lawyer, McCann says.

In any case, now that the woman has effectively marked the ticket, it has all the earmarks of being past the point where it is possible to have a trust gather the rewards.

"She is a longtime resident of New Hampshire and is an engaged community member", the woman's attorney, Steven Gordon, wrote in the court documents.

Charlie McIntyre, the state lottery's executive director, said in a statement that his agency understood winning such a large sum was a "life-changing occurrence". "While we respect this player's desire to remain anonymous, state statutes and lottery rules clearly dictate protocols".

According to Gordon, the victor plans to remain in New Hampshire and distribute her winnings carefully.

Because the woman had already signed the ticket, if she were to "white out" her details and replace them with that of the trust, her $712 million ticket would be made void.

Safa told CNNMoney that he understands why the jackpot victor would want to remain anonymous, since he himself has been inundated with "nonsense calls" of people asking for money and wanting to know the identity of the jackpot victor. William Shaheen wrote a blogpost January 8, two days after the drawing, that shines a spotlight on the difficulties the lawsuit might face. "If you like your life and you like your friends, choose anonymity".

  • Marlene Weaver