The N.C. Education Lottery is taking some steps to help ensure player and staff safety during the coronavirus outbreak, encouraging winners to take advantage of the option to mail in claims to collect prizes.
While all prizes won, both big and small, will be paid, by mailing in claims many winners do not have to travel or visit lottery claim centers.
New social distancing guidelines are now in place at all six Claim Centers that limit visitors inside those lobbies to no more than 10 at a time. Additional measures have been implemented to ensure lobbies are cleaned regularly throughout the day.
“We’re taking steps to protect our players and our staff and will continue to make adjustments as merited,” said Mark Michalko, executive director of the N.C. Education Lottery. “As we make adjustments, we will strive to find safe ways to provide the level of customer service that the public and lottery players expect.”
Here’s key information to assist with collecting prizes:
• Claim forms can be downloaded from the lottery’s website, www.nclottery.com and clicking the “Win” section or by visiting www.nclottery.com/ClaimPrizes.
• Claim deadlines also allow players some time to collect their prizes. Players have 180 days after a drawing to collect a prize and 90 days after the end of a scratch-off game to claim a prize.
• Claims for prizes over $100,000 must be presented in-person at lottery headquarters in Raleigh. Players who win those big prizes should call Customer Services ahead of time to review the requirements for claiming large prizes and to provide the date and time when they plan to make their claim.
• The toll-free Customer Services line is 1-877-962-7529. It is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. till 5 p.m.
Online and smartphone options can also help with some lottery games and drawings.
Lottery players have the option of buying tickets for Powerball, Mega Million, Lucky for Life, and Carolina Cash 5 through Online Play on the lottery’s website and with the lottery’s smartphone app, the NC Lottery Official Mobile App, available for iPhone and Android devices. And the lottery’s Lucke-Rewards program allowed players to set up accounts online to scan their tickets to obtain points that can be used for weekly and monthly drawings.
Most lottery employees are telecommuting or working remotely to meet their responsibilities. Some remain at lottery offices to accomplish those operations which must be done in person and to conduct the daily drawings. But new social distancing practices are in place wherever employees work.
All lottery drawings are being held as scheduled.