Splitting a Lottery Jackpot with Your Spouse

If you’re married and win a billion-dollar jackpot, do you have to share it with your spouse? Asking for a friend. I’m Amy E. Feldman.

A lottery winner in China claimed his thirty-million-dollar lottery jackpot dressed in a mascot costume so his wife wouldn’t find out. Not sure of the thought process there. Either he’s gonna have to keep living like he’s been in which case, why bother playing? Or she’ll probably get suspicious when that new Maserati shows up.

If you win the lottery when you’re married, can you cut your spouse out? Sorry to tell you, but absent a prenup, or in some states non-commingled pre-marital funds or an inheritance, everything acquired during the marriage, bought with money earned during the marriage, is marital property and must be split. That said, distribution only happens if you split. When you’re married, you can decide how money is spent. So maybe your first purchase after you win is a mascot costume after all.

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