Wisconsin's unclaimed lottery winnings exceed $57 million

MADISON— Wisconsin lottery officials say more than $2 million was left on the table by people who had winning tickets but failed to collect their cash in fiscal year 2015.

Post-Crescent Media reports that more than $57 million has gone unclaimed since 1997. Each year, the amount typically fell between $2 million and $4 million.

But those unclaimed winnings aren't lost. They go toward property tax relief in Wisconsin, showing up as a gaming credit on property tax bills.

Lottery officials have said they believe many of the winning lotto game tickets were accidentally thrown in the trash or tucked into pockets and forgotten. They said some players may toss their tickets because they didn't win the jackpot and weren't interested in redeeming smaller cash prizes.