Powerball winner Pedro Quezada riches will be cut down by $29,000 in past-due child support, and thousands more per year could be claimed
The $338 million jackpot winner has five children and they could all claim back pay in child support, but Quezada has said he would be gracious with doling out his winnings so the need to file claims may not be necessary for those kids.
He's a big papi — and now it could cost him.
Rags-to-riches Powerball winner Pedro Quezada has five kids who could all cash in now that he’s a multimillionaire.
The former bodega owner — who scored $338 million with New Jersey’s largest jackpot win — already owes $29,000 in unpaid child support to an unnamed woman, state officials said Thursday.
It will be taken off the top of his Powerball payout before he gets a dime, along with 9% annual interest that has accrued on the 2009 charge.
Even though he’s now worth an estimated $152 million after taxes, his past-due child support payments won’t go up retroactively, said legal expert Bryan Salamone. But any future payments would almost certainly jump.
Courts normally use a formula to give children about 20% of about half of their parent’s annual earnings, up to $300,000. But in Quezada’s case, they’ll likely just take 20% from the top cap of $300,000, Salamone said.
"Given how much he’s got now, he’s looking at paying about $60,000 a year, for each kid who files a claim," said Salamone, a family lawyer who’s helped two lottery winners negotiate child payments.
Quezada says he’s been married to his current wife, Ines Sanchez, for the past nine years.
His oldest son, Casiano, 23, and youngest daughter, 5, were in Passaic with him when he claimed his millions.
But three others — a 15-year-old boy, and girls aged 10 and 17 — were in a different state.
“Hello to Christopher, Diana and Joanna,” Quezada shouted into the cameras inside the Eagle Liquor store where he validated his winning ticket.
“They’re in North Carolina,” he told reporters.
New Jersey has no record of a divorce for Quezada — but does show a child custody claim from a woman who shared at least one child with him but never legally married him.
New Jersey child support ends at 18 — but his oldest could go back and file for back support, said Salamone, if his mother opens a claim on his behalf.
Even his 5-year-old could file a claim if Quezada and her mother are not legally married, Salamone said.
None of the Quezada kids are likely to get super-sized payouts similar to those sometimes seen among the extremely wealthy, Salamone said, because they hadn’t previously been living high on the hog.
“It depends on the lifestyle of the kids — if they’ve grown up going to equestrian camps and insanely expensive private schools and summer camps, then the courts will go big and give them awards that allow them to keep that quality of life,” Salamone said.
Of course, Quezada’s progeny may not have to file any claims at all — the big-hearted immigrant may decide to play Daddy Warbucks and be generous of his own accord.