Oksana Zaharov was regretting her decision to purchase a lottery ticket until she realised that it had been the luckiest decision of her life. The mother of two from New Jersey was shopping in Manhattan when she picked up a $1 scratch-off lottery ticket at a supermarket. When the lady asked for the ticket, she was accidentally given a $10 ‘Set For Life’ ticket. Little did she know that the goof-up would turn out to be a life changing moment, as the 46-year-old woman went on to win a whopping amount of $5,000,000 (almost Rs 31.8 crore).
Disappointed with the “wrong” ticket, Zaharov didn’t scratch the ticket and used it as a bookmark for a couple of weeks. According to the New York Lottery, Zaharov was skeptical once she finally scratched the ticket. “I never win anything. I was sure the ticket was fake. It wasn’t sure until I brought it into the office that I knew it was for real”, she said.
Zaharov wants to take her family on a vacation to Bahamas, and give her children a loan-free college education in future with the money won. According to New York Lottery, the top prize on the Set For Life ticket guarantees a minimum payout of $5,000,000 to be paid over 20 years. Zaharov will receive her $5,000,000 in 19 annual payments of $260,000 or Rs 1.65 cr (net $172,068) and one additional payment of $60,000 or Rs 3.8 cr (net $39,708). After that, she will continue to receive an annual net payment of $172,068 or Rs 1.09 cr for the rest of her life.