Don’t trust anyone with your ticket and claim your prize straight away: Here is the Spanish police’s official advice ahead of tomorrow’s ‘El Gordo’ Christmas lottery draw in Spain

FOR MANY Spaniards, Christmas doesn’t really begin until the sound of the children from Madrid’s San Ildefonso school can be heard singing the winning numbers and prizes at the ‘El Gordo lottery draw

The big day takes place tomorrow, December 22, with millions of euros up for grabs for the lucky winners. 

You can read all about how the lottery works here. 

But there are some things that Spain’s National Police want you to know before the numbers are called. Via social media, the force has released some sound advice to keep your tickets and potential winnings safe. 

THIS will be the winning number in Spain’s famous El Gordo lottery this year - according to AI
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Don’t give your ticket to anyone!

Keep it in a safe place, take a picture of it, and write down the number just in case you lose it. If your winning ticket gets damaged, you will have to send it to the Loterías y Apuestas del Estado state lottery company, who will determine whether it is still valid and whether the prize can be paid out. 

If you are sharing your ticket with a group, sign it and make a photocopy

Should you opt to share a ticket with someone, the police recommend that you make a photocopy of the ticket along with a form containing your name and ID number, all of the details of the ticket and the stake. If the ticket should win, the OCU consumer rights organisation recommends that the organiser share out the prize via a bank to avoid the payments looking like a donation, which is subject to taxation. 

If you lose your ticket, keep calm

The police recommend you immediately report the loss of a ticket to the authorities as well as the state lottery company. If you have made a note of all of the data from the ticket, any prize winnings can be frozen until it can be located. A judge will then have to decide who is the genuine owner of the ticket. 

When you win, be discrete, and don’t wait long to cash in

Winners of ‘El Gordo’ should be discrete, the National Police advise, to reduce the risk of someone stealing you ticket. You will then have until March 23 to cash in the ticket for its cash prize. Beyond that date, the Spanish taxman will keep the money. 

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