What to Do About Tax Issues
When you win a large lottery prize in the UK, you will have the chance to speak to experienced advisors who have guided other lucky players through what to do with their newfound wealth. They will be able to point you in the direction of financial experts and will recommend the most appropriate banks for you to open an account with based on your own circumstances.
With regards to the issue of IHT, it is a good idea to think carefully about the timing of any gifts you plan to make, and then keep a record of any payments. Your financial advisor will also speak to you about the tax on your interest and discuss possible investments to give you the maximum benefit. It may be a complicated topic, but any advice you receive will be tailored to your own personal situation and one very positive aspect is that your prize will not be subject to the same sort of tax laws as it would be in other countries.
Taxes in Other EuroMillions Countries
If you win a EuroMillions prize in Austria, Belgium, France, Ireland or Luxembourg, you will not be taxed on your winnings, just like in the UK. However, winners will be taxed in Portugal, Spain and Switzerland.
In Portugal, any prize worth more €5,000 is taxed at a rate of 20 percent, while there is a levy of 35 percent in Switzerland on any winnings over CHF1 million. Spanish prizes of more than €40,000 are subject to tax at 20 percent.
You can only claim a EuroMillions prize in the country where you bought your ticket, so you will have to accept the local rules on tax even if you are not a resident of the country.
December 2002: Site Launch
Back in the prehistoric days of the internet, before Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube, Euro-Millions.com was launched. At the time, there was approximately 1/50th of the amount of websites in existence that there currently are today. We began offering information to users on how they could win millions of Euros in European lottery games.
February 2004: EuroMillions Launches in France, Spain and the UK
More than a year after Euro-Millions.com went live, the EuroMillions lottery was launched in France, Spain and the United Kingdom. Euro-Millions.com was able to provide results for the exciting new pan-European lottery for the (then) weekly draw and has been doing so ever since.
Fun fact: In the first ever EuroMillions draw, 8.2% of prizes were won in the UK, 15.8% were won in Spain and a whopping 76% were won in France!
May 2008: The First Redesign
With increasing interest in EuroMillions across the continent, we released the first redesign of Euro-Millions.com. The new design brought about an improved user experience, better navigation and more valuable information for you, the user.
December 2008: Multilingual Versions of Euro-Millions.com Launched
As Euro-Millions.com begins to attract users from around the world, French, German, Spanish, Chinese and Russian language versions of the site are launched. This allowed us to begin offering the same valuable information to multiple new audiences.
July 2012: A Record-Breaking Month
Our busiest month to-date continues to be July 2012, thanks to a promotional ‘100 UK Millionaires’ Raffle draw in the UK. The draw on 27th July also marked the opening of the 2012 London Olympics, which the UK National Lottery celebrated by turning 100 EuroMillions players into overnight millionaires. On that weekend alone, more than 10.3 million page views were racked up on Euro-Millions.com!
September 2013: The Second Redesign
As an increasing number of site users are visiting us on mobile devices, our biggest redesign to date was launched on 23rd September 2013. The new layout was optimised with the mobile user in mind, bringing a modern design and improved navigation, making the site easier to access for all users.
October 2015: Login Area and Free Lottery Launched
Due to popular demand, a login area of Euro-Millions.com was launched, allowing users to enter and save tickets into the Checker. This was great news for those running syndicates, who were able to easily manage tickets and members of their syndicates.
The Free Lottery was also launched on the site, offering Daily and Weekly draw prizes for those who match the winning combination.
December 2018: New Languages Added
With Arabic, Dutch and Thai sections added to the site, Euro-Millions.com is now available in 13 languages! They are: English, French, German, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Dutch, Russian, Polish, Chinese, Thai and Arabic.
January 2020: A New Euro-Millions.com App
A new updated version of the app was launched after lots of hard work behind the scenes, bringing you fresh features to improve your experience. You are now able to scan your tickets (UK only) and see within a matter of seconds if you’ve won a prize. The old design has been thrown out and a completely fresh, modern layout has been implemented.
As EuroMillions is a pan-European lottery, the time at which the draw takes place will differ due to the numerous time zones across the continent. Draws are held in Paris at 21:00 (CET), meaning that players in some of the participating countries face an earlier deadline by which to enter.
Here is a list of the different deadlines for buying EuroMillions tickets:
|Ireland, Portugal, UK||19:30 (Tuesday & Friday)|
|Austria, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, Spain, Switzerland||20:30 (Tuesday & Friday)|
Please note, if you are playing through a lottery concierge service the cut off time for entry will usually be a couple of hours before the actual draw deadline.
History of The Game
My Million was first introduced on Tuesday 4th February 2014 to offer French players an extra chance of winning a prize when they played EuroMillions. The introduction of the game saw the price of a French EuroMillions ticket rise from €2 to €2.50.
To date there have been My Million numbers issued.
In September 2016, French players received another chance to win a guaranteed €1 million in special EuroMillions draws as the European Millionaire Maker game was introduced as part of changes to EuroMillions. My Million will continue to be offered to ticket holders in France alongside the new raffle.
Examples of Lottery Scams
As more and more people are becoming wise to lottery scams, fraudsters are getting increasingly creative. Here are just some examples of lottery scams you may receive:
Second Chance Lottery/Raffle
Usually based around a rollover draw, the scammer will claim you have won a prize in a ‘second chance’ EuroMillions draw. EuroMillions does not hold such ‘second chance’ draws. Unclaimed prizes are always either returned to the prize pool to pay winners in future draws or transferred to the good causes supported by the lottery.
Lottery Winner Trusts
Some scammers are using the names of known charitable lottery winners to try and extract personal information from the intended victim by claiming that the legitimate jackpot winner is looking to donate funds to people who are less fortunate or in need.
Anti Terrorism Agency
The victim receives a letter telling them there is a cheque waiting to be sent to them as soon as they pay a fee to an agency that ensures international money transfers over a certain value do not contain funds associated with terrorism.
To see an example of a scam letter received, visit the Example EuroMillions Scam page.
UK Tax Implications
While there is no tax on lottery winnings in the UK, there are a number of important considerations to keep in mind if you are lucky enough to bank a substantial amount such as a EuroMillions jackpot.
Inheritance tax (IHT) is paid when a UK resident dies and their estate is worth more than £325,000. Everything above that threshold will be taxed at 40 percent. If you win a large EuroMillions prize and your estate exceeds the £325,000 valuation, you should be aware of the rules regarding IHT and how it will affect your heirs.
It is very common for big winners to want to share their jackpot in some way, but if you want to make a gift without paying tax you must meet one of the following criteria:
- Give the gift more than seven years before you die.
- Give the gift to your husband, wife, or civil partner.
- Give less than your annual allowance of £3,000.
The seven-year rule is in place to stop people from giving money away just before they die so that they can avoid IHT. As long as you live for at least seven years after making your gift, you can give as much as you want to whoever you want without it being liable for IHT.
If you were to die within seven years, the recipient would have to pay IHT based on a sliding scale. The rate of tax is the full 40% if there are less than three years between you giving your gift and dying, and then it goes down to 32% in years three to four, 24% in years four to five, 16% in years five to six and 8% if there are between six and seven years between your gift and your death.
Any gifts made to your spouse or civil partner are exempt from IHT, so it would not matter if you died within seven years. You can also give gifts to any registered charity without being liable for tax, along with some national organisations, such as the National Trust, universities or museums.
You can also take advantage of the £3,000 ‘gift allowance’ each year without incurring IHT. If you give away more than this amount and pass away within seven years, the recipient would have to pay tax. It is possible to carry over your leftover allowance from one tax year to the next, but only up to a maximum of £6,000.
Other Tax-free Gifts
You can also give smaller gifts of up to £250 to as many people as you want without them being subject to IHT, although this would not include anyone who has already received gifts totalling the whole £3,000 annual exemption.
Wedding gifts can also be exempt from IHT, but only if they are made before the wedding and there has to be proof that the marriage does go ahead. You can make wedding gifts of up to £5,000 to a child, £2,500 to a grandchild or great-grandchild or £1,000 to anyone else. You can also make gifts to help pay the living costs of an ex-spouse, an elderly dependent or a child.
Lottery rules in the UK stipulate that only one person can be paid a prize, so when playing in a syndicate it is essential to have a formal agreement in place to show to tax authorities. This will prove the money was not just a gift and that everyone is entitled to their share. Anyone playing in an informal syndicate should be aware that they may have to pay inheritance tax on the full amount if the syndicate leader dies within seven years of the prize money being shared.
Tax on Interest
Most people can earn some interest from their savings without paying tax, but this might not be the case if you win a large enough EuroMillions prize. While there is no tax on the initial sum paid into your account, it may be that the win starts to produce an income through interest. This will then be taxed as part of your normal income tax.