Is it possible to beat the Lottery?

Learn about the American couple who tried to beat the lottery
Learn about the American couple who tried to beat the lottery

There are no guarantees to winning the lottery as it is all down to chance. However, Jerry and Marge Selbee of Michigan, USA, found a few loopholes to explore many years ago.

In this article we’re going to learn about the American couple who tried to beat the lottery and whether they were successful or not. So, let’s see if it really possible to beat the lottery.

The loophole to a rolldown

Mr and Mrs Selbee, sold their business and decided to retire in 2003, but were soon effectively working 10 hours a day again to capitalise on something Mr Selbee discovered.

Mr Selbee had realised that a new lottery in Michigan had a feature called a “rolldown”. This  was different from the rollovers of most other popular lotto’s. If this Michigan jackpot reached $5 million (£4.2 million) and nobody guessed the six numbers correctly to win it, the money would roll down to winners in the lower tiers who had matched five, four or three numbers.

That's exactly where Mr Selbee, who incidentally has a bachelor's degree in mathematics, saw his opportunity.

"If I played $1,100, mathematically I'd have one four-number winner - that's 1,000 bucks.  I divided 1,100 by six instead of 57 because I did a mental quick dirty and I came up with 18. So I knew I'd have either 18 or 19 three-number winners - that's 50 bucks each," he told CBS.

He explained that, "At 18, I got $1,000 for a four-number winner, and I got 18 three-number winners worth $50 each - that's 900 bucks. So I got $1,100 invested and I've got a $1,900 return. At the end of it all, after years, we played $515,000 and we got back $853,000."

That Michigan lottery, rather understandably, was shut down in 2005. However, to their luck, the Selbees then found a similar lottery in Massachusetts, called Cash Winfall.

"Our first play was $80,000 with 40,000 tickets, and our last play was $712,000 with 366,000 tickets. We did spend 11 to 14 nights at the motel in South Deerfield and it was something we looked forward to," added Mr Selbee.

He further added, "It was something different and it was profitable, and it was able to help our family and help our friends out with a little financial boost."

Almost needless to say, the Massachusetts state treasurer eventually closed Cash Winfall as well. Whether there was or was not legitimate validity in the Selbees' approach, it likely prompted interest in US lotteries from elsewhere around the world.

Increase your chances of winning the lottery with Lottoland legally

So, although the American couple found a loophole to winning the lottery, authorities are extremely aware of schemes like Mr and Mrs Selbee’s and now enforce vigilant checks on lottery winners to ensure that every win is legal and legitimate.

In order to improve your chances of winning a lottery pick from one of the many lotteries at Lottoland to bet on, with similar formats or better odds of winning than the UK Lotto like the Irish Lottery which often has bigger jackpots but with a much better chance of winning. When betting on the lottery with Lottoland, you are not participating in the official lottery, but instead are betting on the outcome of the results of the lottery.

To have an even better chance of winning try betting on the Polish Lottery, Austrian Lotto or Mini Lotto. If you match the official winning numbers you’ll win the same prize as if you had purchased a ticket in the official lotto.