"Investment News warns that winning the lottery carries odds of 7-million-to-1, making it much more likely for you to be struck by lightning.
But a fortunate few do win, and they're greater in number than you might you think. Lotteries handed out more than $21 billion in winnings last year. Yet every time a state lottery agency has a big payday, it's tantamount to clearing an untrained pilot for takeoff.
As financial advisers know all too well, people who come into sudden wealth often face wrenching psychological changes. Far from good fortune, the results can be ruinous.
Nearly one-third of all lottery winners eventually seek some sort of bankruptcy relief."
Source: Preaching Today and Dana Beatty, Schaumburg, Illinois; source: "Taking Sides: Time for Lotteries to Help Winners," Investment News (5-6-02)