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California Woman Wins Lottery by Accident

Luck was on her side in a very unexpected way.

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When LaQuedra Edwards put $40 into a lottery scratchers machine at a Tarzana, Calif. Vons Supermarket last November, luck was on her side in an unexpected way.

Edwards didn't get to choose her ticket that day; a stranger bumped into her, causing her to accidentally select a $30 200X Scratchers ticket by mistake — and win a $10 million prize.

Edwards recalled the serendipitous encounter, saying, "some rude person" bumped into her, "didn't say a thing and just walked out the door." Annoyed that she wouldn't be able to buy her go-to set of lower-priced tickets, Edwards went back to her car — and got the surprise of a lifetime.

Related: North Carolina Man Wins Lottery Twice After Accidentally Buying 2 Identical Tickets

Scratching off the ticket revealed she'd just won millions. "I didn't really believe it at first, but I got on the 405 freeway and kept looking down at (the ticket), and I almost crashed my car," Edwards said. "I pulled over, looked at it again and again, scanned it with my (California Lottery mobile) app, and I just kept thinking this can't be right."

Edwards plans to use her winnings to buy a house and start a non-profit organization, and the Vons location that sold the lucky ticket will receive a $50,000 bonus.

How much will Edwards walk away with after taxes? Although California is a relatively high tax state, there's an exception for lottery winners (those who bought their tickets in the state, at least.) But those winnings will generally be subject to the highest federal tax rate — 37% — and, when lumped in with overall annual income, may incur local and state taxes.

Related: The Harder You Work, the Luckier You Get

Edwards may not be a full $10 million richer, but it's safe to say her winnings are worth more than the apology she didn't get in front of the lotto machine that day.

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