Lost and Damaged Tickets
If you’ve lost a EuroMillions ticket, there is no proof that you are a winner even if your numbers come up for that particular draw. You need to be in possession of a valid entry to be eligible to receive a prize.
For damaged EuroMillions tickets, you may be able to pick up any awards you are due if the information on that ticket can still be read and processed.
All the lottery operators have their own policies and ways that you can appeal if you think you can prove you have won, but wherever you play it is vital to keep your tickets safe if you buy them from a retailer.
Tickets are regarded as bearer instruments, so whoever is in possession of one is considered to be the owner. Find out below what happens if you lose your EuroMillions ticket in each of the participating countries.
Keeping Numbers Safe
If you purchase a EuroMillions ticket in-store, it is your responsibility to make sure it does not get mislaid or destroyed. Keep it in a safe place that you will remember for later, and also sign the back of it. This will help to show that it is yours - it stops anyone else from being able to claim with it and gives you a better chance of being reunited with the ticket if you lose it.
To avoid any chance of your ticket getting misplaced, damaged or stolen, you may also want to consider playing online. There is a digital record of your numbers in your online account so they cannot go missing, while you will also be notified if you win a prize.
If your EuroMillions ticket has gone missing and you think you might be a winner, you need to submit an appeal to the National Lottery within 30 days of the relevant draw. For an investigation to be carried out, you must provide sufficient information. The same applies to tickets that have been so damaged that they cannot be scanned. Here are the details you will need to provide:
- The date and time where you bought the ticket. Be as precise as possible
- The name of the store and location where you purchased the ticket
- The numbers you played, or whether it was a Lucky Dip
- How many lines of numbers you played – list all the numbers that were selected if you can
- The date you believe a prize was won
- How the ticket got lost, damaged or stolen
You can submit your appeal by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or posting it to the National Lottery's Player Services Department at PO Box 287, Watford, WD18 9TT.
If the National Lottery is satisfied that you are a winner, you may still be paid out the prize you would have been due.
If you have a ticket that looks fine but the barcode can’t be scanned, you should ask the employee at the retailer and they may be able to give you advice based on any error messages that are appearing.
Entries can become slightly blemished in many ways, but the most common problems are tickets that get torn or suffer water damage.
In July 2019, Scottish couple Fred and Lesley Higgins were paid a jackpot worth £57 million even after their ticket had been ripped in two. It was the store employee who had mistakenly torn it when he initially thought it was not a winner, only for a message to appear moments later to say the player should contact the National Lottery. An investigation was carried out, with CCTV footage from the store reviewed, and the Higgins’ were given the amount in full.
What happens if I find a lottery ticket and it wins?
If you have found a lottery ticket that has won or goes on to win, you may be able to receive the prize if it does not already have someone else’s name and address on it. However, you should send the ticket by post to the National Lottery so they can check whether anyone else has reported it as lost or stolen first.
You will not be able to receive a prize without a valid ticket, but you can contact the Irish National Lottery if you have a complaint or find a ticket that does not belong to you.
You’ll need to write to the lottery’s Customer Care Team, at Abbey Street Lower, Dublin 1, D01 Y1X2. You should also contact the lottery as soon as possible if your ticket gets lost, so they can advise you on the appropriate course of action.
If you have a damaged ticket that you think is a winner but is not getting processed by a scanner, you should post it in for validation. It may be that you still get to receive the full prize amount that you would have been due, while the lottery could also decide to refund you the price of your ticket or provide a replacement for a future draw.
If you lose a EuroMillions ticket in Switzerland, you will not be eligible to receive any prize money it might have been worth. If you have a damaged ticket, you should send it in by post to your relevant lottery operator if you think it is a winner and you are refused a payout.
You should file an objection that includes your name and address, the location of the point of sale where you played, the numbers you played, date of the draw, plus any more information you think may be helpful.
If you’re located in one of the German-speaking cantons or Ticino, you can contact Swisslos at Lange Gasse 20, 4002 Basel. If you’re playing in one of the French-speaking cantons, you’ll need to post any documentation to Loterie Romande at Avenue de Provence 14, Box 6744, 1002 Lausanne.
Luxembourgian rules state that winnings are only payable to players who have an intact ticket. It must be whole, not torn, and all the relevant information must still be present for verification. It is therefore impossible to pick up a prize if you lose your EuroMillions ticket.
If the state of your ticket has deteriorated but there are still elements that could identify it as a winning entry, you can send it in for validation to Player Relations department, located at 18 rue Léon Laval, L-3372 Leudelange. You’ll need to post in your damaged ticket within 60 days of the draw date while it is still valid, and you may still be paid out if it is found to be a genuine winning entry.
If your EuroMillions ticket has gone missing and there is no evidence you ever bought it, you won’t be able to receive any prize you would have been due. Damaged tickets may still be eligible if the information on them can be processed.
You can file a complaint online or by emailing email@example.com if you think you are entitled to a prize. You can also post a letter or damaged ticket to Nationale Loterij, Rue Belliard 25-33, 1040 Brussels. You may also wish to consider signing up for the National Lottery Club and getting a membership card so that your purchase details are stored online.
The French National Lottery, Française des Jeux (FDJ), will investigate complaints over tickets that can’t get paid out at a point of sale because they are damaged. You’ll need to send your entry to FDJ Customer Service, TSA 36 707, 95 905 Cergy-Pontoise, Cedex 9. Include all your contact details and as much information as you can about the ticket and what has happened to it. If it can be verified as a winner, your money will be paid to you.
There’s a 60-day payment deadline so be sure to send in your appeal as quickly as you can after a draw. If your ticket has disappeared, you will not be eligible for a payout.
You must present a valid ticket at an authorised retailer or claim centre in order to receive a EuroMillions prize. It is your only proof that you have played and National Lottery operator Österreichische Lotterien is not obligated to pay any awards to anyone who is not in possession of a ticket.
It may be possible to collect a prize with a damaged ticket if it can still be processed by the scanner. If you believe you are a winner but are unable to receive your payout, you should contact the National Lottery directly. You can post claim forms or damaged tickets to Österreichische Lotterien at Rennweg 44, 1038 Vienna. There is a four-week deadline to make complaints about a draw.
You need to be in possession of a valid EuroMillions ticket to be able to collect a prize, so if your entry has gone missing there is no obligation on the part of Spanish lottery operator Loterías y Apuestas del Estado (SELAE) to pay you the money you may have been due.
However, there is still a chance you could receive a payout with a damaged ticket. If it cannot be processed at the sales outlet you go to, you can submit an appeal online or by posting your query to SELAE Customer Service Department, calle Poeta Joan Maragall 53, 28020 Madrid. SELAE aims to settle all disputes within one month of receiving them.
You have the right to complain if you do not receive a prize that you think you are entitled to, although without a valid ticket there is no proof that you have won. If your payout has been denied for any other reason, such as a damaged ticket, you should contact national lottery operator Jogos Santa Casa directly.
You can email your complaint or post it to either the Lisbon or Porto claim office. The Lisbon office is located at Avenida da Liberdade no. 194, 1269-275, while the other address is Delegação do Porto, Rua de Aleixo da Mota no. 86, 4150-044.
You should include as much information as possible, including the date of the draw, where you purchased your ticket, the numbers you played and the reason for your complaint.