State lotteries have become common in the United States. Governments administer state-run lotteries to raise money for schools, roads, capital projects, and simply to raise general revenue. Because these are state-run enterprises and due to the money involved, lotteries are tightly controlled by statute. Here’s a quick summary of Vermont’s state lotteries laws.
Vermont Lottery and Tri-State Lottery
There are two major lotteries in the Green Mountain State. Vermont has its own lottery and is part of the Tri-State Lottery with Maine and New Hampshire. Each one is separately established and regulated by Vermont statute – meaning that they operate under slightly different but related laws. The Tri-State Lottery has more restrictions on paying out prizes to someone other than the winner (such as when ticket is assigned to another person) and licensed ticket sellers face some additional requirements. For the most part, however, the two are similarly operated.
Many consumer protections come from the lottery laws. A minimum of 50% of revenue is reserved for prizes in both lotteries. Sales agents must be licensed, tickets cannot be sold for more than the price printed on the ticket, and members of the lottery commission and their household cannot win prizes. Tickets must be claimed within one year or the money reverts back to the lottery fund.
The lotteries are subject to state-mandated annual audits. There’s also a provision in Vermont law for terminating its lottery should revenue dip below a certain level. Finally, once operating costs are subtracted, all proceeds go to fund state and local education in the state.
|Code Section||General provisions (tit. 31, §§ 651-667); Tri-state lotto compact (tit. 13, §§ 671-678).|
|Distribution of Lottery Revenue||50% of gross sales revenue goes to prizes. Once operating costs are accounted for, remaining revenue goes to fund state and local public education.|
|Additional Purpose of Lottery||-|
|Lottery Prize Subject to Garnishment||-|
|Time Limit to Claim Prize||One year. Unclaimed prizes revert back to the state lottery fund.|
|Prohibited Related Activities||State lottery is expressly exempt from Vermont’s gaming laws; Advertising must state odds of winning to the extent practicable; Tickets cannot be sold for more than the printed price; Tickets cannot be sold to minors but can be given as gifts to minors; licenses are required to sell lottery tickets and licensees cannot be convicted felons; Lottery commission members, employees, and household members cannot receive prizes.; lottery is audited annually.|
Related Resources for State Lotteries Laws
State lotteries are state administered with the public in mind and protection is built into the process. You can find most information on the Vermont Lottery’s webpage. When problems do arise however, they can be complex and require legal training. If you have a question about gaming law, consider speaking with a local gaming lawyer.
Contact a qualified attorney.