Joining a Powerball office pool? What you need to know

With a jaw-dropping $1.4 billion and growing up for grabs, there are few New Yorkers not running out and purchasing one or more tickets to Wednesday’s Powerball drawing. Many will be forming pools with their friends and co-workers to bulk-up their purchasing power in an effort to help sway, albeit it to a Lilliputian degree, the astronomical odds of winning in their favor. But before you jump into a Powerball pool, there are important issues you need to consider.

The New York Lottery advises the following:

Elect a group leader who will be responsible for collecting and accounting for the money in the group
Keep an accurate list of all participants—make note of those who opt out—and distribute the list to all whose name appears on the list to avoid any confusion later on
Agree on who will buy the ticket(s) and where and when the ticket(s) will be purchased
The buyer should provide a copy of the ticket to everyone in the group within a specified period of time prior to the drawing
Consider limiting the number of people in the office pool to 10 or less (see below)

In the case of a group winner, the New York Lottery can issue individual checks to up to 10 individuals. Groups of 11 players or more that win have several options:

Consider forming a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) and listing each person in the group as a member. The Lottery will pay the prize to the LLC under the LLC’s tax ID number. The group leader would be responsible for making the disbursement to each LLC member.
Consider forming a Trust and listing each member as a beneficiary. In this scenario, the Lottery would make the prize directly available to the Trust utilizing the Trust’s tax identification number. The Trust would then make the disbursements to the group.
Groups also have the option of electing up to 10 individuals within the group to receive the prize, making those individuals 100 percent responsible for all tax implications associated with the prize. They would also be responsible for disbursing all funds to the rest of the group.


Established in 1852, St. Michael’s Cemetery is one of the oldest religious, nonprofit cemeteries in the New York City, situated in the borough of Queens and open to people of all faiths. It is owned and operated by St. Michael’s Church, an Episcopal congregation located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. For more information of all the great services St. Michael’s offers and events it hosts, go to www.stmichaelscemetery.com. Or call 718-278-3240.