Lotto Jackpot Rolldowns
A jackpot rolldown occurs in a draw in which the top prize must be won but nobody matches all six numbers. When that happens, the prize money is split between other winners. Find out exactly how 'Must Be Won' draws and jackpot rolldowns work and how they benefit Lotto players.
Must Be Won Draws
Camelot introduced updates to Lotto in November 2018, including changes to the prize structure and how the jackpot is capped. Where previously the jackpot could roll over until it hit £22 million, it can now only roll over for a maximum of five consecutive draws before a 'Must Be Won' draw is held. In a Must Be Won draw, the jackpot is guaranteed to be given away, even if no tickets meet the usual winning criteria of matching all six numbers.
- Draw 1 – The jackpot starts at £3.8 million on a Saturday or £2 million on a Wednesday. If nobody wins, the jackpot rolls over.
- Draw 2 – There is a double rollover if no one matches all six main numbers.
- Draw 3 – If there are no ‘Match 6’ winners, it is a triple rollover.
- Draw 4 – There is a quadruple rollover if there are still no players in the ‘Match 6’ prize division.
- Draw 5 - The jackpot rolls over for a fifth time if there are no Match 6 winners
- Draw 6 – The jackpot must be won.
If anyone matches all six main numbers in the Must Be Won draw, they win the jackpot as normal. If, however, no tickets match all six numbers, the prize money does will be distributed to other winners through a rolldown.
How the Rolldown Works
The rolldown only comes into effect if no player matches all six main numbers in the Must Be Won draw. In this scenario the top prize - which will usually be worth around £11 million or £12 million by this point - will be shared between every other winner from the Match 3 tier to the Match 5 + Bonus tier.
If you win a cash prize when a rolldown occurs, you are therefore guaranteed to receive a larger amount than the standard fixed award. A certain percentage of the jackpot prize money will be allocated to each category from Match 3 to Match 5 + Bonus. The table below shows the percentage that will be distributed to winners in each tier, as well as the estimated values for each category.
|Numbers Matched||Fixed Prize in a Regular Draw||Percentage of Jackpot Fund Allocated||Estimated Prize in a Rolldown Draw|
|5 + Bonus Ball||£1 million||3%||£1.2 million|
History of the Rolldown and Jackpot Cap
Must Be Won draws have existed in Lotto since the game was launched in 1994, but the jackpot did not previously roll down in the same way. The money for the top prize instead spilled down just to the next tier in which there were winners.
The jackpot cap was £22 million before the new rules were announced. The top prize could then roll one more time after it had reached this mark, before it had to be won in the following draw. If no one matched all six main numbers, the money would be split between ticket holders in the next winning tier.
In the draw on 27th December 2017, for example, a player won £24.5 million by matching just five main numbers plus the Bonus Ball. This was because the jackpot had to be won, and there were no Match 6 winners. Had it not been for this participant, the money would have been split between everyone in the Match 5 tier.
Camelot stated that the most recent rule changes introduced in November 2018 were designed to create more millionaires in every draw.