Hairstylists battle over $9.5 million lottery jackpot

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LAWRENCE – A $9.5 million lottery windfall is on the line—and hairstylists at a Lawrence hair salon hope they get the share they feel they’re entitled to.

But they’ll have to rely on the compassion of a co-worker.

The women work at Lou’s Creative Styles in Lawrence, where they’ve pooled their money to buy lottery tickets for a long time. So, when the Feb. 16 drawing proved a winner, they thought everyone had won a share of the jackpot.

Not so fast, said the woman who bought the ticket. According to her co-workers, the woman said she bought a lottery ticket with her own money while purchasing one for the group. She said while they didn’t win, she did.

The other hairstylists hired an attorney and asked a judge to stop the Indiana Lottery Commission from awarding the prize from the jackpot. The judge agreed to the temporary order, but the stylists want it extended as they try to negotiate with their co-worker.

During a hearing Wednesday, the women said they had a longstanding agreement regarding the office lottery pool. That one rule, they said, was crystal clear: the person designated to buy the group ticket for a given drawing could not buy a “personal” lottery ticket at the same location. The rule was intended to prevent situations like this from happening.

They had previously agreed that any ticket purchased with someone’s own money while buying a group ticket would be for the whole group.

The rule never came into play because the group never won a significant amount of money. They used any winnings to buy extra tickets for the next drawing.

While the other stylists said their co-worker may have indeed bought the winning ticket with her own money, they said she knew the rule and broke it.

A ruling on extending the payout ban is expected on Friday.

15 comments

    • Nancy

      Thats the way we always did it at work when lottery tics were bought…not hard to figure out a fair way to play the lottery with a group.

  • John

    If in fact that rule they speak of existed and she broke it then she needs to pay, however, a verbal agreement is only hearsay and should not be held up in court. Anyone making any such agreements or rules should have them in writing and signed by all parties agreeing to abide by them. I see no difference in this case from any other case where party A loans party B money and has no agreement for repaying said loan. You just do not make binding agreements verbally. So, this will be a win for the attorney's and a loss for someone. Not only will it be a financial loss, but it will cost the loss of friendship and create a hostile work environment should the person who bought the ticket continue working there.

    • ClanSmokeJaguar

      You REALLY think this woman will continue to work there with at least $5 million in her pocket?

      Seriously! lol

    • Teddy

      There are plenty of situations where a verbal agreement is as legally binding as a written one. If you don't believe me, go Google it.

      That said, John has a wise point. Why not take two minutes and draft up a WRITTEN contract. So many tax dollars wasted on idiotic lawsuits between half-brained twits and their "pinky-promise-swear-by-our-holy-friendship" deals.

  • ClanSmokeJaguar

    The women who didn't win the lottery will be SOL on this.

    It's their words against the winner and if nothing is in paper, good luck! Even more, it seems if this rule did exist, it wasn't honored in the past making it pretty much void.

    Instead of suing, they should ask the winner kindly for a piece of the pie.

    Furthermore, I've been the designated pool person before at jobs. I **ALWAYS** purchased tickets ahead of the drawing, letting people know there was a deadline to give me their $$$. I would purchase the pool tickets and my personal tickets, photocopying the pool tickets and leaving copies in my office for everyone to pick up. I did all of this just to avoid such boo-sheet.

  • Mike

    The lottery is a tax on poor people.

    Of course everyone’s greedy. That is why people buy lottery tickets.

    The holder of the ticket is the winner. Period.

    My prediction is that whomever gets the winnings will have spent it all within five years and be in bankruptcy.

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