Feb. 17 (UPI) -- A New Hampshire judge on Friday ruled that money from a $559.7 million Powerball jackpot can go into a temporary trust but a ruling was not yet made on whether the winner's name will be disclosed.
"Jane Doe," a woman who purchased the winning lottery ticket last month in Merrimack, N.H., wishes to keep her identity a secret. Her attorney, Steven Gordon, has asked for the money to be moved while waiting for a decision about her anonymity because she is losing an estimated $14,000 in interest each day.
By Jane Doe signing the ticket with her name and hometown, Gordon said she lost her right to anonymity, which could have been avoided if she had first assigned the ticket over to a trust.
New Hampshire Lottery commission rules state once the funds are moved into a trust, the winner will have access to the prize money.
By state law and as part of the claim process, the woman's identification and Social Security number will be provided to the New Hampshire Lottery Commission for a record search to determine if any outstanding money is owed to the government or in a legal matter such as child support.
New Hampshire Assistant Attorney General Jon Conforti said the state will work with Jane Doe to make the transition easier, but taxpayers need to know the commission is running the games with integrity, fairness and transparency.
Jane Doe's attorney said his client fears if her name is revealed she could face harassment, annoyance and possibly threats or violence.