A passive trust is type of trust which has a very limited purpose. It is not “active” in that it usually has only one purpose, to essentially act as an escrow agent, and is very short lived.

This process works for Mega Million winners as well but only if the ticket is purchased in Ohio. This is a great benefit because most other states do not let you claim Mega Millions on an anonymous basis.

If you have won and need more information please give me a call and I can answer your questions.

I recently made a trip to the Ohio Lottery Commission in Cleveland to anonymously claim the winnings for yet another million dollar winner. I always enjoy these trips.

In discussing the anonymous claim process with the lottery officials it appears there are not many attorneys who know how to handle this type of matter. One of the most important pieces to a successful claim is a document called a “passive trust”. A passive trust is type of trust which has a very limited purpose. It is not “active” in that it usually has only one purpose, to essentially act as an escrow agent, and is very short lived. Once the purpose of the passive trust is completed, the trust then terminates. The passive needs to be very specific in its terms and purpose. General trust language will not suffice. There are not many attorneys who draft passive trusts. As part of my Ohio Lottery claim process I have drafted passive trusts for each one. This passive trust needs to be reviewed and approved by the Ohio Lottery Commission before they will advance the process for the anonymous claim.

After all the paperwork is approved by the Ohio Lottery I then personally deliver the winning ticket, and the signed passive trust, to the Ohio Lottery Commission in Cleveland. This is the only office in Ohio where the anonymous claims are processed. It cannot be done locally or even the Columbus office. After our meeting the check is sent to me as the trustee of the passive trust. The money is then deposited into a bank account dedicated for the passive trust. Once all the banking hurdles are cleared the lottery proceeds are transferred to a secondary custodial trust. It is from the custodial trust, which is not public information, the winnings can then be transferred to the actual winner.

This process works for Mega Million winners as well but only if the ticket is purchased in Ohio. This is a great benefit because most other states do not let you claim Mega Millions on an anonymous basis.

If you have won and need more information please give me a call and I can answer your questions.