Lucky For Life

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Lucky for Life (which began in Connecticut in 2009 as Lucky4Life) is a US$2 game played in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island; it is called "New England's Game." Its drawings remain in Connecticut; the game is drawn Mondays and Thursdays at 10:38 pm Eastern Time.[1] The Connecticut-only version began on March 29, 2009; the regional game began on March 11, 2012, and was changed again on September 17, 2013. Its first drawing was September 19.

Lucky For Life is one of three lottery games available throughout New England. (The 2009 Mega Millions/Powerball cross-selling agreement allowed American lotteries, which could each offer either "national" game before January 31, 2010, to add the other on that date. Five of the six lotteries immediately added "the other" game; Maine joined Mega Millions on May 9, 2010.)

First- and second prize payouts[edit]

Unlike other American lottery games, Lucky for Life offers two annuitized prize levels; both are advertised as "lifetime" prizes. Unlike in the previous versions, first-prize winners can choose cash in lieu of the lifetime annuity; second prize winners also are offered a cash option. First-prize winners (if the cash option is not chosen) receive, or share, the equivalent of "$1,000 a day for life" (the timing of the payments is according to the rules where the ticket was sold), with a 20-year guarantee; if the winner dies, payments continue to the winner's heir(s).[2] (The Connecticut-only game's top prize was "$2,000-per-week-for-life". First prize is split among multiple winners.

Second prize is now $25,000 per year for life (cash prize of $10,000 in the Connecticut version, and $25,000 in the previous regional game), as the game's double matrix added 3 white balls and 22 green "Lucky Balls"; players now choose 5 of 43 white balls, and a "Lucky Ball" from a second set of 43 numbers. The first drawing (September 19, 2013) in which second prize is a choice of cash or lifetime annuity had two such winners, both sold in Maine.

Winning and probability[edit]

A player wins a prize according to the following chart:

Matches Prize Approximate
of winning on a $2 bet
White balls
Lucky Ball
5 1 $1,000/day or cash option† 1 in 41,391,714 (43C5×43)
5 0 $25,000/yr or cash option†† 1:985,517 (43C5×43/42)
4 1 $3,000††† 1:217,851
4 0 $150 1:5,187
3 1 $100 1:5,888
2 1 $20 1:491
3 0 $10 1:140
1 1 $5 1:112
0 1 $4 1:82
2 0 $2 1:12

†First-prize cash option is $5,750,000. ††Second-prize cash option is $390,000. The cash option amounts are decided by a unanimous vote by the six lotteries; these amounts are posted at least 30 days before the change(s) occur. †††Second- and third prizes have liability limits as well.

The overall odds of winning are 1:8.6.