Guaranteed starting jackpot amounts and minimum rollover increases to be eliminated starting the draw of April 8th 2020! Future Powerball jackpot rests and increases will be calculated based on game sales and interest rate and announced by the Product Group prior to each draw.
Powerball Product Group announced on March 20th 2020 a series of changes to the Powerball jackpot rules, as reaction to the unprecedented crisis of the coronavirus outbreak. The top prize was supposed to be reset to $20 million and the increase between draws to be of at least $2 million. Previously, the US Powerball rules included a starting jackpot of $40 million and a rollover increase of at least $10 million.
On April 2nd, the Powerball Product Group made a second announcement, eliminating both the guaranteed amount of the starting jackpot and the minimum increase in case of rollover.
The corona virus pandemic has affected the entire world. More and more countries are imposing restrictions, recommending or forcing people to stay at home in order to contain the spread of the virus and limit the negative impact of this pandemic. The crisis is touching all aspects of life, including the lotteries. In the US, many lottery offices are closed until further notice. Claim centers in most states operate with reduced hours or upon appointment.
However, the biweekly draws of the two multi-state lotteries have continued so far as scheduled. For the Powerball lottery, the Multi-State Lottery Association confirmed the situation will stay this way, only that a few rules regarding the jackpot are changing as follows:
- There is no guaranteed starting amount;
- There is no minimum rollover jump;
These changes will come into effect starting with the draw of April 8th. There is no mention, however, in the official statement, as to how long these temporary changes will be in place
Why has the Powerball lottery made these decisions? The answer is pretty obvious: on one hand, ticket sales are a lot lower, while on the other hand, the lottery officials want to continue to support the good causes, especially in these difficult times. As the lottery is a way of raising funds for different state projects and causes, this decision comes to ensure that there is sufficient funding to states whilst the coronavirus pandemic continues.
Powerball players in many U.S. lottery jurisdictions are under shelter-in-place orders or recommendations from their governors or mayors, which have affected normal consumer behaviors. Just like other enterprises around the world that are making adjustments, we are making proactive changes to continue to offer the world’s premier lottery product. We would like to offer support to our loyal players during this unprecedented time. We are committed to being America’s favorite jackpot game.Gregory Mineo, Powerball Product Group Chairman and Maine Lottery Director.