$1 Million Lottery Winner Still Uses Food Stamps

Amanda Clayton millionaire food stampsWinning the lottery can be world-rocking, and it certainly was for Amanda Clayton, who scored $1 million in Michigan's state lottery last September, or a little over $500,000, she says, after taxes. But there are downsides too: Like jealous friends who are looking for ways to bring you down, as in tipping off a local TV station that you're still collecting food stamps.

Detroit's WDIV-TV followed 24-year-old Clayton, who bought a new house and a car with her winnings, into a grocery store, where she paid with a Bridge Card, issued to Michigan residents in need of food assistance. Clayton reportedly gets $200 a month from the state.

The reporter confronted Clayton, and asked her if she thought it was ethically right.

"Well, I thought they would cut me off but since they didn't, I thought maybe it was OK because I'm not working," she replied. When asked if she thought she deserved that money, she said, "I kind of do." She has bills to pay, and two houses.

"I mean, it's hard," she adds. "I'm struggling."

Clayton is the second Michigan lottery winner in less than a year to be caught charging groceries to a Bridge Card. Leroy Fick took home $850,000 after taxes from his $2 million jackpot, bought himself a new home and an Audi convertible, and called up Michigan's Department of Human Services to see if his Bridge Card was now void. It wasn't.

"He feels like he's paid into the system," Fick's lawyer said, since his client had just put over $1 million in the state's coffers.

Michigan lawmakers have spent the last year desperately trying to close this loophole. Since last October, an applicant was ineligible for food assistance if they had liquid assets of over $5,000 and a second vehicle worth more than $15,000 -- but then retracted the car stipulation. Other states, like Nebraska and Louisiana, have taken the opposite approach in the economic downturn, and eliminated asset tests, so that scores of the newly unemployed wouldn't be forced to spend their modest savings.

But few have sympathy for the food stamp recipient who was recently handed a six figure check. It's unclear whether they're worth all the energy though. As The New York Times put it in December, "as it turns out, millionaires on food stamps are about as rare as petunias in January." Perhaps Michigan is just having some freak weather.

Next: N.J. Construction Workers Sue Colleague For Share Of $38.5 Million Lottery Prize

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Tennessee if your caught its either pay back what you stolen Federal Time regardless of the amount. Then you are banned for life never to be able to apply for Food Stamps again. The whole system is overloaded with peoplewho aren't even born here in the USA, but the moment they land they head straight for the WELFARE OFFICE to get stamps,housing,and a check. live here TAX FREE given a new home, full line of credit and vehicle then go back for a moment come back do it all over again. They are given free Health Care. New rule to get Health Care: "you have to be Pregnant,an Immigrant,or have a TERMINAL ILLNESS!!!

March 14 2013 at 6:33 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I guess I should point out that the article subject, Amanda Clayton, was charged with welfare fraud. She died last October.

February 09 2013 at 5:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mary ann

this girl has since passed away .....

February 09 2013 at 5:56 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Annie Moore

I work every day and I can hardly buy food after paying my bills. I wouldn't dare go apply for food assistance because I know the answer... YOU MAKE TOO MUCH!!!

February 09 2013 at 4:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think that she/he should have to pay it ALL back ... I am on SSDI and am in the process of having my home foreclosed on, yet, because of a drug related arrest almost 20 years ago, I can't get FOOD STAMPS, and I am literally not able to buy food.

February 07 2013 at 11:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Constance's comment
Say NO to libs!

Which state won't give food stamps to convicted drug offenders? I never heard of such a thing.

February 09 2013 at 5:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

these people make me SICK


February 07 2013 at 10:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to wajguy's comment
Say NO to libs!

If they put these slobs in jail, the taxpayers would be paying for a lot more than their groceries.

February 09 2013 at 5:07 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Karma caught up with this young lady in the form of death. She is dead!

February 09 2013 at 10:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

why do people still use the term food stamps there is no such thing and has not been in many years the government changed that over to a card which all government aid is issued on, the EBT card

February 07 2013 at 10:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to blackopsg3's comment
Say NO to libs!

Yeah, the card that's accepted everywhere, like bars, liquor stores, casinos, smoke shops, etc. etc.

February 09 2013 at 5:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

most people will try to beat the system because all our lives the system has been beating us so it is based on an eye for an eye, but i do feel that if you are poor enough to need assistance from your state then you have no right spending your money on lottery tickets, so i feel the right to stop assistance should end the country is in enough trouble why support a free loader

February 07 2013 at 8:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My late husband and I signed up for food stamps 10 years ago just for 3 months, we were only getting $600.00 a month from Navt retirement and fighting for his VA benifits, ( he was a disabled veteran ) we to get back to the story , we got the food stamps a large amount of $ 10,00 a month. not even enough to but 1 gal of milk 2 loaf of breat and 1 pound of bologna. Yes she is wrong dhe should go to the welfare office and turn in her card, I would if I was in her shoe's.

March 08 2012 at 12:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My mom died at 95 last November with a total monthly income from my Dad;s social security of $1800 a month.....She lived with my sister because she could not pay rent, heat, phone, AARP, electric on that money so I tiied to get her food stamps....I was told NO SHE MAKES TOO MUCH......??? I guess I should have moved her from NY to MIchigan.....What a country....only in America can you flaunt it in the face of government and still get away with THIEFT.....

March 08 2012 at 9:15 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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