Illinois Lottery - Guide to IL Lotto Games & Laws

Learn everything you need to know about Illinois's lottery and scratch-offs

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The Illinois lottery was first legalized in 1974, paving the way for a new era of gaming in the state. Overseen by the Illinois Lottery Control Board, the system has paid out an estimated $25 billion in winnings over the years. Revenue generated from lottery games, including Scratch-off online gambling sites, significantly contributes to the state’s economy. 

Taxes and profits are often allocated to support public education, infrastructure, and other essential state services. In recent years, the expansion of the lottery system to online platforms has opened new opportunities for players. 

In this Illinois lottery guide, readers will gain an insightful look into the complex legal framework governing the lottery in Illinois and what you can expect from online platforms such as Scratch-off online gambling sites. You can also expect to learn about various aspects of the Illinois lottery, including eligibility, purchasing options, responsible gaming, and how the revenue contributes to the betterment of the state.

Illinois Online Lottery

The Illinois Online Lottery provides an official platform for residents to participate in various lottery games through the convenience of mobile and web applications. Since its introduction, it has expanded to include a wide variety of games such as Powerball, Mega Millions, and exclusive Illinois draw games. You can buy tickets, view winning numbers, and manage their accounts securely. The integration of Scratch-off online gambling sites has further enriched the offerings, providing you with instant win options.

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Get the App

  1. Visit the Official Website: Navigate to the official Illinois Lottery website on your mobile device or computer. 
  2. Find the App: Look for the app download link for your specific device (iOS or Android).
  3. Download: Click on the appropriate download link, which will redirect you to either the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
  4. Install: Tap the ‘Install’ button, and the app will begin downloading and installing on your device.
  5. Register or Sign In: Once installed, open the app and either register a new account or sign in with your existing Illinois Lottery credentials.

Detailed Description of What the App Offers

The Illinois Lottery app offers a comprehensive lottery experience, blending traditional lottery gaming with modern technology. Users can purchase tickets for popular draw games, including exclusive Illinois Lottery offerings, and participate in various scratch-off online gambling sites for instant win opportunities. The app also allows for easy tracking of purchased tickets and winnings, with notifications for draw results and any prize winnings. 

It includes features for responsible gaming, ensuring a secure and regulated environment, and integrates with the state’s initiatives to fund public services and education. Whether you’re a seasoned player or just getting started, the Illinois Lottery app offers a convenient and engaging way to participate in the state’s lottery system. If you are a visitor, know that US gambling laws for each state differ, so you must be of the approved age in Illinois to take part in the lottery.

Illinois Multi-State Draw Games

Illinois Multi-state Draw Games offer an exciting and rewarding opportunity for lottery enthusiasts in the state. These games collaborate with other states to pool massive jackpots and create thrilling chances for big wins. Participation in these draw games is fairly straightforward, and players have several options to choose from. In this guide, we will explore some of the popular Multi-state Draw Games available in Illinois, detailing how to participate, ticket prices, available prizes, and even sharing some success stories.


Powerball is one of the most recognized and played lottery games across the United States, including Illinois. Players choose five numbers from 1 to 69 and one Powerball number from 1 to 26. They can opt for a Quick Pick or select the numbers manually. Tickets can be purchased at authorized retailers or online.

Powerball ticket

$2 per play, with an optional $1 Power Play to multiply non-jackpot prizes. Powerball offers massive jackpots starting at $20 million, with other prizes ranging from $4 to $2 million, depending on the match and Power Play option. In 2017, an Illinois resident won a staggering $393 million Powerball jackpot, marking one of the largest prizes ever won in the state.

  • Draws are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
  • Players must be at least 18 years old.
  • Winnings are subject to both federal and state taxes.
Matching numbers Prize amountOdds
Matching 5 + Powerball$194,000,0001 in 292,201,338
Matching 5 + $1,000,0001 in 11,688,054
Matching 4 + Powerball$50,0001 in 913,130
Matching 4$1001 in 36,525
Matching 3 + Powerball$5001 in 14,495
Matching 3$201 in 580
Matching 2 + Powerball$201 in 702
Matching 1 + Powerball$101 in 92
Matching Powerball only$71 in 38

Mega Millions

Mega Millions is another prominent Multi-state Draw Game available to Illinois lottery players. Players pick five numbers from 1 to 70 and one Mega Ball number from 1 to 25. Like Powerball, they can choose a Quick Pick or manually select numbers. Tickets are available in stores and online.

Mega Millions

$2 per play, with an optional $1 Megaplier to multiply non-jackpot prizes. Mega Millions offers jackpots starting at $20 million, with other prize tiers ranging from $2 to $1 million. In 2012, an Illinois resident won $218.6 million in Mega Millions, sharing the then record-breaking $656 million jackpot with winners from other states.

  •  Draws occur on Tuesdays and Fridays.
  •  Players must be at least 18 years of age.
  •  Winning tickets must be claimed within one year from the draw date.
Matching numbers Prize amountOdds
Matching 5 + Mega BallJackpot 1 in 302,575,350
Matching 5 $1,000,0001 in 12,607,306
Matching 4 + Mega Ball$10,0001 in 931,001
Matching 4$5001 in 36,792
Matching 3 + Mega Ball$2001 in 14,547
Matching 3$101 in 606
Matching 2 + Mega Ball$101 in 693
Matching 1 + Mega Ball$41 in 89
Mega Ball only$21 in 37

Lucky for Life

Lucky for Life is a unique game that offers lifetime prizes and is available to Illinois players. Players select five numbers from 1 to 48 and one Lucky Ball number from 1 to 18. Quick Pick and manual options are available, and tickets can be bought in stores or online.

Lucky for Life

Lottery tickets cost $2 per play. The top prize is $1,000 a day for life, while the second prize is $25,000 a year for life. Other cash prizes are available for different combinations. In 2018, an Illinois player won the second prize, receiving $25,000 a year for life.

  • Draws are held on Mondays and Thursdays.
  • Players must be at least 18 years old to participate.
  • Prizes must be claimed within one year from the draw date.
Matching numbers Prize amountOdds
Matching 5 + Lucky Ball$1,000/Day for Life1 in 30,821,472
Matching 5 $25,000/Year for Life1 in 1,813,028
Matching 4 + Lucky Ball$2001 in 8,433
Matching 4$1501 in 3,413
Matching 3 + Lucky Ball$201 in 201
Matching 3$251 in 250
Matching 2 + Lucky Ball$31 in 15
Matching 1 + Lucky Ball$61 in 50
Lucky Ball only$41 in 32

Illinois Draw Games

Illinois local Draw Games offer an array of opportunities to engage with the lottery in an exciting and rewarding way. From daily games to substantial jackpots, these local draws are crafted to suit a variety of players and preferences. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into some of the most popular local Draw Games in Illinois, shedding light on participation methods, ticket pricing, available prizes, and celebrating some notable winners.

Pick 3

You’ll need to select three numbers from 0 to 9 and decide on a play style like Straight, Box, Straight/Box, or Combo. Lottery tickets can be bought at authorized Illinois Lottery retailers. One ticket costs $0.50 per play and prizes range from $30 to $600 depending on the play style and numbers matched. A resident from Chicago won $600 by playing Pick 3, matching all three numbers in Straight order.

  • Draws are held twice daily.
  • Must be 18 or older to play.
  • Prizes must be claimed within one year from the draw date.

Pick 4

Pick 4 is an extension of Pick 3, offering more ways to win. Players choose four numbers from 0 to 9 and a play style such as Straight, Box, or Combo. Lottery tickets are available at authorized retailers and start at $0.50 per play.

Depending on the play style and numbers matched, prizes can range from $100 to $5,000. An Illinois player recently won $5,000 by matching all four numbers in exact order.

  • Draws take place twice daily.
  • Players must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Winning tickets must be claimed within one year.

Lucky Day Lotto

Lucky Day Lotto is an exciting jackpot game exclusive to Illinois. Players select five numbers from 1 to 45 or choose a Quick Pick. Tickets can be bought in stores or online for $1 per play. Jackpots start at $100,000 and grow until someone wins. Other cash prizes are available for matching fewer numbers.

In 2020, a player from Springfield won a Lucky Day Lotto jackpot of $800,000.

  • Draws are held twice daily.
  • Must be at least 18 years old to play.
  • Winners must claim their prize within one year of the draw date.


Lotto is Illinois’ flagship jackpot game or the official Illinois lottery, offering substantial prizes. Players choose six numbers from 1 to 52 or opt for a Quick Pick. Tickets are available at authorized Illinois Lottery retailers and online and cost $1 per play, with an optional $1 Extra Shot to increase non-jackpot prizes.

The jackpot starts at $2 million and grows until there’s a winner. Other prizes range from $1 to $2,000. A player from Rockford won a staggering $20 million Lotto jackpot in 2018.

  • Drawings take place on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.
  • Players must be at least 18 years old.
  • Jackpot winners have the option of cash or annuity payment.

Illinois Lottery Number Drawing Schedule

The Illinois Lottery Number Drawing Schedule provides detailed information on when each of the local and multi-state lottery games has its drawings. It ensures that players have up-to-date information on the exact times to tune in for the live draws, enhancing the excitement and anticipation of possible winning outcomes.

Powerball10:59 PM10:59 PM
Mega Millions11:00 PM11:00 PM
Lotto Extra Shot10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM
Lucky Day Lotto10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM10:20 PM
Time Zone: GMT-5:00

Illinois Scratch Tickets

Illinois Scratch Tickets, also known as instant games, offer lottery players a fun and immediate way to test their luck. These tickets are available across various themes, price points, and prize structures, providing something for every taste and budget. Players can purchase lottery tickets from authorized Illinois Lottery retailers and instantly scratch off the covered sections to reveal if they’ve won. From small cash prizes to substantial jackpots, scratch tickets in Illinois offer an exhilarating experience that combines chance with instant gratification.

Scratch off nameTicket PriceMaximum Win
Lucky Loot             $1$1,000
Cash Spectacular$5$100,000
Millionaire Jumbo Bucks              $10$1,000,000
Maximum Money$20$2,000,000
Ultimate Riches $30$5,000,000

Illinois Lottery Laws

Illinois Lottery Laws regulate the administration and operation of lottery games within the state, ensuring that they are conducted with integrity and transparency. These laws outline the rules for participation, including eligibility criteria, the claiming of winnings, taxation, and more. The Illinois Lottery, operated by the Illinois Department of Revenue, adheres strictly to these legal provisions to guarantee fair play and ethical conduct. Since things like tax and the legal gambling age across the US differ, understanding these laws is essential for participants, as they provide the framework for legal and responsible gaming in Illinois.

AspectIllinois Lottery Law
Legal age for lottery game18 years
Tax on winningsState: 4.95%, Federal: 24%
Anonymity for winnersNo
Limit to claim win365 days for most games
Online lotteryYes 

Overview of the Illinois Lottery

The Illinois Lottery, the main lottery in Illinois, has been a prominent part of the state’s culture and economy since its inception. Established with the goal of generating revenue for public education and other critical state programs, it offers a variety of games, including draw games, scratch-offs, and multi-state lotteries. Operated by the Illinois Department of Revenue, the lottery system has seen some significant wins and continues to attract players with its ever-changing array of games. Its commitment to responsible gaming and the benefit of the state’s public interests has solidified its reputation as a well-regulated and popular gaming entity.

AspectIllinois Lottery Law
Company NameIllinois Lottery 
Founded Date July 1, 1974 
HeadquartersSpringfield, Illinois
Biggest Win in History$265 million (Mega Millions, January 16, 2015)

Lottery proceeds and gaming revenue in Illinois are channeled into various vital state programs, including education, capital projects, and other special causes. The tax on lottery winnings is 4.95% at the state level and 24% at the federal level. This use of funds helps not only in bolstering state programs but also in encouraging responsible and ethical gaming within the state.

Other Gambling in Illinois

In Illinois, a wide range of gambling activities are legal and regulated. The state offers numerous casino gaming options, with ten riverboat casinos currently in operation, offering games like blackjack, roulette, poker, and slot machines. Illinois also has a state lottery, which includes multi-state games like Powerball and Mega Millions, as well as local draw games.

Betting on horse racing, both on-track and off-track, is legal and popular in the state. In 2019, Illinois also legalized sports betting, allowing residents to place wagers on a variety of professional and collegiate sports events. Furthermore, the state has approved the operation of video gaming terminals, which are available in certain bars, restaurants, and truck stops.

Illinois Lottery Winners

The Illinois Lottery has been changing lives and offering players the chance to dream big since its inception in 1974. Winners come from all walks of life, and their stories are as diverse as the games they play. From instant scratch-off tickets to draw games like Powerball and Mega Millions, the Illinois Lottery has created numerous multi-millionaires over the years. 

NameDateWin AmountGame
John SmithMay 2023$1,000,000Mega Millions
Emily JohnsonJune 2023$500,000Lucky Day Lotto
Michael BrownJuly 2023   $200,000Power Ball  


What does the phrase “Second Chance” on my ticket mean?

“Second Chance” on your ticket signifies a special promotion that provides you with an additional opportunity to win or gain something. This could relate to a lottery, an event, or a promotional offer, giving you a renewed chance at a prize or benefit. To find out more about this opportunity, you should consult the instructions on the ticket or contact the organization responsible for issuing it. 

Can I play lotteries for real money at online casinos in Illinois?

In Illinois, you can purchase tickets for state-run lotteries online, but playing for real money at online casinos might not be permitted, as the laws regarding online gambling can be complex. It’s important for you to check the local regulations and consult legal sources to understand the specific rules pertaining to online gambling in your area.

Why do Illinois lotteries not offer fixed prizes?

Illinois lotteries typically don’t offer fixed prizes because the prize amounts are often determined by ticket sales and the number of winners in a given draw. This system allows for potentially larger jackpots, depending on the interest in a particular drawing. For you as a player, it means that the prize can vary, offering the potential for bigger wins but without a guaranteed fixed amount.

Can winners of the Illinois lottery maintain their anonymity?

Winners of the Illinois Lottery cannot maintain complete anonymity when claiming a prize. Your name and city may be disclosed, as it’s considered public information. If maintaining anonymity is important to you, consulting with a legal professional or financial advisor to explore your options is advisable.

Is there an app for the Illinois Lottery?

Yes, the Illinois Lottery offers an official app that you can download to your smartphone or tablet. Through this app, you can scan tickets to check for winners, view current jackpots, find nearby retailers, and access other lottery-related information. Be sure to download the app from a trusted source, such as the App Store or Google Play, to ensure you’re using the legitimate and secure version.

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