Your Guide to the Mega Millions Lottery Rules

One of the most popular American lotteries, Mega Millions  has taken the world by storm quite a few times with its eye-popping jackpots. In this article, we are going to tell you all about the Mega Millions rules, as well as the impressive track record of this fantastic game.

Mega Millions Rules

What is the range of numbers for Mega Millions? This game works with two separate pools of numbers: a main one, where players need to choose 5 numbers from 1 to 70 and one for the additional number, drawn from 1 to 25. You need to match all 5 numbers and the Mega Ball in order to hit the jackpot, but Mega Millions offers a generous range of secondary prizes.

Can Indians Play Mega Millions?

Of course. We offer you the safest way to play online, while providing you with the means to optimize your game at the same time. Syndicates, systematic forms, multi-draws, and subscriptions are just some of the amazing benefits that come with playing Mega Millions on LottoSmile.

Mega Millions Jackpot

The Mega Millions top prize starts at $40 million, which is the largest initial jackpot in the world, matched solely by Powerball. Moreover, it grows by at least $5 million with every single rollover. With no jackpot cap and no limit whatsoever, the top prize of this lottery can reach mouth-watering amounts very quickly.

What is the largest Mega Millions jackpot ever? $1.53 billion! Impressive right? It is the second time that any lottery has ever passed the $1 billion threshold. The $1.53 billion pot came just shy of breaking the world record, but in the end, Powerball’s first place stayed untouched.

The US Powerball holds the record since January 2016, when its jackpot reached a whopping $1.58 billion. And if you’re wondering who held it before the Powerball, it was none other than the US Mega Millions. In 2012, it had the largest prize in world (at the time) worth $656 million. The battle between these two lottery titans continues and it is bound to bring new mouth-watering pots soon.

Top Mega Millions Jackpots to Date

Just to get a clear image of the sheer size of the Mega Millions lottery, we have gathered the absolute biggest jackpots in the history of the game. Looking at the table below, it is all too clear how this amazing lottery has gotten this popular. And can you believe that it is getting even bigger?

Rank Date Amount # of winners


October 23rd, 2018

$1.53 billion



March 30, 2012

$656 million



December 17, 2013

$648 million



July 24, 2018

$543 million



July 8, 2016

$536 million



March 30, 2018

$533 million



January 5, 2018

$451 million



January 1, 2019

$437 million



March 18, 2014

$414 million



August 11, 2017

$393 million


Mega Millions Jackpots by Year

If the table above was not enough for you to visualize how big of a role the Mega Millions has played in the development of the lottery market, then the following one will consolidate the idea. You can see not only the largest wins it has had every single year, but also the number of jackpot winners it has had throughout the years. So, watch and be amazed by the stellar track record of the Mega Millions lottery:

Year Jackpots Won Biggest Jackpot


1 so far

$437 million



$1.53 billion



$393 million



$536 million



$265 million



$414 million



$648 million



$656 million



$380 million



$266 million



$336 million



$275 million



$390 million



$270 million



$315 million



$294 million



$183 million



$165 million

Mega Millions Secondary Prizes

As appealing as the Mega Millions jackpot is, it is far from being the only reason why this American lottery is well worth playing. The 2nd category prize displays a fixed amount of $1 million. In order to scoop this prize, you have to match all the 5 main numbers of the draw.

How much do you win if you get 2 numbers in Mega Millions? Here is a common question regarding Mega Millions prizes. Just 2 numbers from the main range will not bring you any prize. In order to win something, you need to match 2 main numbers and the Mega Ball or 1 number and the Mega Ball. The only prizes you can win without the Mega Ball are those belonging to the 2nd, 4th and 6th category.

How much do you win if you have 1 number and the Mega Ball? This combination will earn you a $4 prize. You can also win a prize worth $2 by matching only the Mega Ball, but none of the main numbers.

Prize Category Match Prize Amount Winning Odds





2nd Prize


$1 million


3rd Prize




4th Prize




5th Prize




6th Prize




7th Prize




8th Prize




9th Prize




Your Odds of Winning the Mega Millions Prizes

The Mega Millions jackpot starts at $40 million and grows by a minimum of $5 million with every draw that the winning numbers are not matched. The players’ chances of scooping the jackpot are 1 in 302,575,350, which is close to the odds of winning the Powerball.

The odds of scooping the second prize are at 1 in 12,607,306. This means that you can become a millionaire with Mega Millions even without matching all the numbers.

Mega Million Prize Tier Odds of Winning

Jackpot – Minimum $40 million

1 in 302,575,350

2nd Tier - $1 million

1 in 12,607,306

What is the Megaplier Option?

The Megaplier option is one of the best things about the game because it can provide a sizable increase to lower-tier prizes. It is also the most convenient of the American lottery multipliers. Moreover, this awesome feature is very easy to use!

 Mega Millions Megaplier

How does the Mega Millions Megaplier work? It’s easy. You add Megaplier on your ticket if you want to win larger prizes. Even 5 times larger! After the main numbers and the Megaball, the lottery officials draw the Megaplier, which can be 2, 3, 4, or 5. The Megaplier determines how many times the secondary prizes won on tickets with Megaplier will be increased. The Megaplier also increases the second prize worth $1 million.

What is the Megaplier 5x? It’s the maximum value for this multiplier. The Megaplier 5x will multiply any prize you won by 5. If you are lucky enough to match the 5 winning numbers, you will scoop $5 million. Note that this does not happen in the Powerball lottery, which only doubles the second prize regardless of the amount of the drawn multiplier.

What are the types of payouts in the Mega Millions?

The Mega Millions lottery offers two types of payouts for jackpot winners: lump sum and annuity. Anyone who matches the 5 winning numbers and the Mega Ball, can choose between getting the prize amount all at once or over a period of 25-30 years. There are pros and cons to both options.

If you are in the situation of making such a decision, you should know that the taxation laws are different for lump sum and annuity. For instance, if you scoop the $40 million Mega Millions jackpot, this is the amount you will get if you go for the 30 years’ annuity option. However, if you want to cash it as a lump sum, you will receive around $25 million.

Those who are lucky enough to match all the winning numbers and hit the Mega Millions jackpot have a year to claim their prize. Note that Mega Millions prizes can be redeemed only in the state where the winning tickets were purchased.

Can you remain anonymous if you win the Mega Millions?

Anonymity after winning the lottery is a hot topic in many countries. When talking about a multi-state American lottery like Mega Millions, the answer depends on the state the ticket was purchased in. There are six American states that allow lottery winners to keep their identity away from the public eye: Delaware, Kansas, North Dakota, Maryland, South Carolina, and Ohio. All the other states request winners to reveal a number of details regarding their identity.

Mega Millions History

Ever since it was released back in 1996 as The Big Game, this lottery has continued to expand further and further until it reached the very top of the lottery market. From the 6 participating states and one weekly draw of The Big Game, the Mega Millions got to 44 states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The name Mega Millions was adopted in May 2002. At the same time, the original Big Money Ball became the Mega Ball. The following year marked the addition of the Megaplier, and Texas joined the Mega Millions family. In 2010, an agreement with Powerball was reached and Mega Millions tickets were offered in the former Powerball states as well.

2017 brought along the start of a new era for the Mega Millions, as from this year on, we can expect even bigger prizes from this fantastic lottery. The question on everybody’s mind is “Will the Mega Millions jackpot reach the billion-dollar threshold?”. Well, in the new version of the game, the Mega Millions has every single chance to, so be prepared for greatness.

 Powerball vs. Mega Millions

Powerball vs. Mega Millions

The central reason why the Powerball lottery has always had an advantage on the Mega Millions was the fact that their minimum jackpot was $40 million, while the staring prize in the Mega Millions was of $15 million. But, as of October 28th, 2017, this is no longer the case. As per the new rules of the Mega Millions, the first prize starts out at a whopping $40 million.

This meant that after years and years, the Powerball vs. Mega Millions battle was finally starting from an even playing field as their jackpots were equal. This rule change was meant to make a sizable difference for the Mega Millions and add more milestones to its jackpot track record.

It didn’t take long for the change to trigger some massive jackpot events. In October 2018, the Mega Millions had its ground-breaking $1.53 billion jackpot. While Powerball’s $1.58 billion pot remains the holder of the world record, the Mega Millions is always breathing down its neck with outstanding jackpot opponents.

Do Indians Have to Pay Taxes on Mega Millions Prizes?

When you play Mega Millions from India on LottoSmile, any prize you win will be taxed in accordance with the local tax laws of the American state they were purchased in. Frist, a federal tax of 30% will be withheld from all lottery prizes larger than $599.50. This law applies to all non-resident lottery winners. Then, a state tax will also be deducted, but the quota depends on the state’s taxation laws.

After the taxes to the US have been paid, Mega Millions prizes are taxed further according to the local tax laws of the winner’s country. You should check with the India tax authorities to find out the amount due on your international lottery gains.

So, have you put in your Mega Millions ticket yet? Are you ready for the race for the jackpot starting at $40 million? Experience the new Mega Millions on a secure platform that can give your game a sizable boost and bring you closer to becoming a Mega Millions winner. All it takes to change your life is matching thee five main numbers and the Mega Ball! Good luck!

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