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January 17, 2019

CHICAGO – For the ninth consecutive year, more than 50 Illinois Lottery players claimed prizes of $1 million or more

Fifty-five players claimed an Illinois Lottery prize of at least $1 million in 2018, including one prize of $22.5 million.

In all, the Illinois Lottery paid $1.8 billion in prizes to players in 2018. The largest prize claimed – $22.5 million – was a Lotto jackpot won December 1, 2018. The winning ticket for that prize was sold at a Shell gas station in Prospect Heights.

“We are thrilled to celebrate our 2018 winners — big and small — and look forward to awarding more prizes in 2019, while doing our part to raise money for education, capital projects and other special causes in Illinois,” Illinois Lottery Acting Director Harold Mays said.

Lottery players aren’t the only winners. Illinois Lottery retailers also benefit, receiving a one percent bonus of the prize payout for the sale of winning tickets of $1,000 or more, a one percent bonus for paying players’ in-store prizes of up to $600, and five percent commission on all lottery ticket sales. In all, retailers across Illinois were paid $165 million in bonuses and commission in Fiscal Year 2018, which ran from July 1, 2017, through June 30, 2018.

The State of Illinois wins, too. With annual ticket sales of nearly $3 billion, the Illinois Lottery contributes 25 cents of every dollar spent on games back to the state for public schools, capital projects and other special causes. In Fiscal Year 2018, Illinois received $732 million in proceeds from Lottery sales. For more information, visit


About Illinois Lottery

Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery has contributed over $20 billion (since 1985) to the state’s Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars to the Capital Projects Fund and to special causes like Illinois Veterans services, the fight against breast cancer, MS research, Special Olympics and assistance for people living with HIV/AIDS. In addition to playing in-store, the Illinois Lottery offers online and mobile play for all draw-based Illinois Lottery games at Players must be at least 18 years old.