Only six states that participate in Powerball allow individuals to remain anonymous after winning a jackpot. However, there are steps that lottery winners can take to keep their identity as close to a secret as possible. The first option may be to use a trust, as it may be possible to keep hidden the identity of the person or group that owns assets inside of that entity.
In such a scenario, an individual would create an LLC or another separate entity affiliated with that person. The name of this entity is what would be people or other entities would see when searching for the winner of a given jackpot. For those who want an even greater level of anonymity, it may be possible to create a trust within a trust.
First, a claiming trust is created to receive the lottery winnings. While the trust technically owns the ticket, the trust is also affiliated with the person claiming the winnings as he or she is the grantor, trustee and beneficiary. In other words, the winner is also the same person who will transfer the funds into a bridge trust. An alternate strategy may be to create an irrevocable trust and name another person as trustee so that the winner cannot be traced back to the trust.
Trusts may be powerful tools that help an individual keep ownership of assets out of the public record. It may also be possible to use a trust as part of complicated estate planning strategies as they can provide assets for use one or more generations into the future. Those who are interested in creating a trust may wish to talk to an attorney about how to tailor it to their unique needs.