£41 million challenge: how can British lottery winners protect their jackpot?

24th January 2012

Millions dream of how a massive lottery win could change their life and allow them to buy anything they want. So Gareth and Catherine Bull, the British winner s of the Euro Millions lottery jackpot on Friday 20 January, will be the envy of the nation after scooping a mammoth £41 million. But they will face an unusual problem, according to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Winning so much cash should make life easier but the FSCS says Mr and Mrs Bull face an unexpected conundrum - how to keep their money safe while working out what to do with it.

The FSCS protects up to £85,000 of savings deposited in an authorised commercial bank, building society or credit union. Or it will cover up to £170,000 for joint accounts per authorised institution. That means that the lucky winners will need nearly 240 joint-accounts, in separately authorised institutions, to remain within the limit.

Mark Neale, Chief Executive of the FSCS, said: “In these tough times, it is vital to keep your money safe. And winning £41 million means Mr and Mrs Bull face a problem many would love to have.

“The FSCS protects your money in banks, building societies and credit unions authorised by the Financial Services Authority. People with large amounts of cash should remember to always try to keep within the £85,000 FSCS deposit limit, or £170,000 for joint accounts. To ensure their jackpot is safe, Mr and Mrs Bull should consider spreading their money around.”

The FSCS, which is free to consumers, has helped 4.5 million people and paid more than £26 billion in compensation since 2001.