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A Little Less Than A Month Left For Unclaimed $10,000 Lottery Prize In Le Mars

Expiration Deadline For Unclaimed Prize In Hot Lotto Game Is Oct. 31

Hot Lotto

DES MOINES, Iowa - There's a little less than a month to go until the expiration date for an unclaimed $10,000 lottery prize won in Le Mars, and the Iowa Lottery is reminding players to double-check their tickets.

"We don't want to see our prizes go unclaimed, so wherever you keep your tickets, get them out and check them," Iowa Lottery CEO Terry Rich said Friday.

The unclaimed prize was won nearly a year ago in the Hot Lotto® game by someone who bought a ticket at Casey's, 101 Fifth Ave. SW in Le Mars. The lucky ticket matched the first five numbers but missed the Hot Ball in the drawing on Oct. 31, 2012, to win a $10,000 prize. The winning numbers that night were: 17-26-27-30-37 and Hot Ball 17.

The winner or winners have until the close of business at 4 p.m. on Oct. 31 to claim the prize at a lottery office. The Iowa Lottery has offices in Council Bluffs, Storm Lake, Mason City, Des Moines and Cedar Rapids.

Hot Lotto is played in Iowa, 14 other states and the District of Columbia. The game was revamped in May, and it now has an all-cash jackpot with withholding taxes paid, meaning that if the advertised jackpot is $2 million, the winner will receive a one-time, lump-sum payment for that full amount.

In addition to the change in the jackpot, several other prize levels in the game were also increased. The eight non-jackpot prize levels in the redesigned game range from $2 (unchanged) for matching the Hot Ball alone up to $30,000 (formerly $10,000) for matching the first five numbers but missing the Hot Ball. All nonjackpot prizes still triple with the additional $1 Sizzler option, meaning a player would win $90,000 for matching the first five numbers with the Sizzler option added.

Hot Lotto players now choose five numbers from a pool of 47 and another number, called the Hot Ball, from a pool of 19. The Hot Lotto jackpot starts at $1 million and grows until someone wins it. Tickets in the game cost $1. Hot Lotto drawings are held at about 9:40 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays, just before the Powerball drawings.

Players in Iowa have up to 365 days from the date of the drawing to claim prizes in Powerball®, Mega Millions® and Hot Lotto®. Players have up to 90 days from the date of the drawing to claim prizes in Iowa's $100,000 Cash Game and the Iowa Lottery's Pick 3 and Pick 4 games. If the expiration date falls on a weekend or holiday when the lottery's offices are closed, the winner has until the close of business on the next business day to turn in the ticket.

Prizes in instant-scratch and pull-tab games must be claimed within 90 days of the end of the game. Scratch-game prizes can be claimed at any Iowa Lottery retail location where the games are sold, while prizes in pull-tab games must be claimed at the location where the tickets were purchased.

Prize money left unclaimed after redemption deadlines goes into the lottery's prize pools for future games and promotions. During fiscal year 2013, nearly $1.4 million in prizes expired without being claimed in Iowa lotto games.