Huge €8m Lotto jackpot remains unpaid as deadline almost up

Matt Lyons shop in Sligo, where the winning ticket was sold
Matt Lyons shop in Sligo, where the winning ticket was sold

The National Lottery still hasn't handed out an €8.24million jackpot, just hours before the deadline is due to expire.

A person came forward to claim the prize from the March 5 draw but lotto operator Premier Lotteries Ireland still hasn't paid out.

The 90-day deadline for payment is due to expire tomorrow but neither the lottery or the claimant have revealed why the payment hasn't been made.

Earlier this week a spokesperson for the National Lottery told the Irish Mail: "The National Lottery at all times works to ensure due process in our claims procedure, in accordance with our statutory and regulatory obligations.

"As has always been the case the National Lottery never comments on the specifics of individual claims to protect the privacy of the claimant.

"In line with our normal policy, we will update once this prize money has been collected."

As of this evening there was no "update" from the Lottery providers.

The problem is believed to revolve around the operator's rules on ticket validation.

The winning ticket must be intact and can't be "mutilated, altered, illegible, incomplete or tampered with in any manner," according to the lotto.

Athlone-based lawyer Tony McLynn told RTE News a number of weeks ago: "Everybody’s happy now.

"The matter has been resolved, and the PLI [Premier Lotteries Ireland], the licence operator, has confirmed that appropriate interest along with the principal will be paid in due course.

"So it's a good outcome, everybody's happy."

He added that the winnings hadn't been transferred but that "the logistics of that just have to be sorted out but that's in hand".

Tony added about the cause of the delay: "There was a matter of clarification sought and that was resolved."

The Lotto haven't commented on any of the lawyer's statements.

Speaking on behalf of his client, Tony McGlynn said despite the "excitement" of the win the delay of the €8.24million payment had been difficult to accept.

He added: "It has been [stressful].

"You take it in the context of the excitement of winning and the expectation they're going to have their money fairly quickly and then for whatever reason there's a delay and they had concerns themselves from their point of view as to why there was a delay and maybe questioning the bona fides of the operator."

The 'winning ticket' was sold by Matt Lyons in his shop in Sligo town on the day of the draw.

The winning numbers were 2, 8, 16, 24, 33, 42 with a bonus number of 47.

Normally under Lottery rules, a winner has 90 days to collect their prize.

This would give any winner of the March 5 draw until June 3, which is tomorrow, to claim the money.

It isn't clear if that rule would apply to a claim made before the 90 day deadline but it does mean that no other claims could be brought forward after this Friday.

When previously asked if the rules applied in this specific scenario, the National Lottery operators wouldn't comment if the normal 90-day period rule would apply.

However, the rules state that any prize not claimed within 90 days is subject to Lotto rules and will be forfeited.