They say nothing in life is more important than family, but as it turns out, all bets are off when it comes to the lottery.
On July 11, one woman and her nephew from Margaree Forks, Nova Scotia won the the Chase the Ace lottery, winning the grand prize of $1,222,639.00, or $611,319.50 each.
However, Barb Reddick is now taking her nephew Tyrone MacInnis to court for his half of the prize, with claims that he doesn't deserve his share.
According to Reddick, she email transferred MacInnis $100 to pick up the tickets, and told him to put his name on the ticket for good luck, not to split the cash should she have won the jackpot.
"I put his name on the ticket for good luck because he's like a son to me — he was," she said. "He was lucky, but not for half a million dollars."
Instead, the 57-year-old alleges that she only offered to share the smaller consolation prize from
the 50/50 draw, which happens before the Chase the Ace draw takes place.
When the time came to collect the winnings, Reddick said she was stunned when MacInnis said he expected half of $1.2 million prize money.
"I would have given him $150,000," she said. "Listen, Tyrone was the son that I never had. Me and Tyrone — ask anybody — we’re very very close."
When Reddick went to collect the prize money the following day, she was gobsmacked that instead of getting one hefty cheque, her winnings with the 19-year-old were split into two.
The retired military supply tech furiously told reporters at the photo op that she'd be "getting my lawyer tomorrow," and that MacInnis wasn't entitled to any of it.
"Tyrone is getting nothing from me," she said. "It’s just for the principle. We were so close. He broke my heart. He broke it. … People go crazy when it comes to money."
"I’m taking him to court. It was my ticket," she angrily told reporters. "Now he’s trying to lie and say I said split."
Bernice Curley, the chairwoman of the Chase the Ace lottery fundraiser, said they drew up two
separate cheques to make splitting the money easier for the pair, and that Reddick's reaction "wasn't pretty."
"I can’t really explain it. I didn’t really expect anything like that to happen. I just came to deliver the cheques to the winners," Curley said. "I’m a little bit disappointed that this happened at the end."
How It Works
The Chase the Ace lottery is a popular fundraiser in the Maritime provinces. Every week people can purchase tickets, with the money split into three different sections.
First, 20% goes into that week's 50/50 draw, while 30% is put into the ever growing jackpot. The remaining 50% goes towards a charity, and in this case were for two fire halls to get new firetrucks and emergency response vehicles.
"For a place that says there's no money, there was money coming into Margaree over the last few weeks. I'm not sure where, but everyone just wants a shot at it [the jackpot]," Curley said.
The owner of the winning ticket for that week then gets to pick a card out of the stack of 52, in hopes to get the ace of spades. Should the individual pick the magic card, they'll win the jackpot. But if they don't, they still get to walk out with the 50/50 draw cash prize.
If you were Reddick, would you share the winnings with your nephew or want to keep it all to yourself? Tell us in the comments!
And as we now know, winning the lottery isn't always what it's cracked up to be! To learn about more controversial stories:
- Teen Winner Might Sue The Lottery After Jackpot "Ruined Her Life"
- Mastermind Who Rigged The Lottery For $2.4 Million May Keep Some Of His Winnings
- Clerk Tells Woman She Won The Lottery, But She's Not Allowed To Collect Her Prize