INDIANAPOLIS, IN --An Indianapolis lawyer is weighing in on the potential dark side of lotto pools ahead of an historic Powerball jackpot drawing on Wednesday. The current estimated amount for a win is $1.5 billion.
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WXIN interviewed attorney Scott Montross, who represented a group of hairdressers who sued a co-worker over a $9.5 million lottery win in 2013. The women claimed they all went in together on tickets. However, the woman who bought the tickets claimed she personally purchased the winning ticket. She claimed she bought the ticket at the same time and at the same location as the pool tickets.
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Montross' clients felt that was breaking a well-established and well understood rule.
Montross told WXIN, "They felt betrayed. They were disappointed. They were saddened. That someone that they had an arrangement with would depart from the path."
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The women wound up finding a resolution through mediation, but what they lost, Montross told WXIN, was maybe more important. He said, "I expect you to be fair and honest with people. And you have a right to expect people to be fair and honest with you."
To avoid this kind of situation, Montross advised that everyone should be on the same page about the rules and expectations and perhaps have a spokesperson or legal representation if the group wins.
Also, while you don't need to have an agreement in writing, Montross says it's helpful.
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Finally, Montross said the ticket buyer should send a picture of the tickets to the entire pool before the drawing so everyone has the numbers.
Powerball is played in 44 states as well as the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.
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