The lawyer for a Chatham woman, in the middle of a battle over millions of dollars in lottery winnings, says they are waiting for the completion of an OLG investigation.

Steve Pickard represents Denise Robertson. She claims her live-in boyfriend, Maurice Thibeault, told her a Lotto 6/49 ticket was not a winner before moving out of their home.

But Thibeault, a 46-year-old father of three, allegedly tried to claim the $6.1-million winning ticket from the Sept. 20 draw five days after moving out of the home.

Robertson apparently caught wind of the situation when she found out, through mutual friends, that he had quit his job.

“I think given the facts that we have, she is entitled to half” says Pickard who adds they have filed an emergency court injunction to prevent Thiebeault from getting his hands on the disputed millions.

The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) has frozen the funds until the matter is resolved.

CTV Legal Analyst Boris Bytensky said the fact that they are not legally married will eliminate some of the division of property rules that would otherwise apply. If the matter goes to court, he said, the fate of the money could be decided by circumstantial evidence, or whoever wins over the judge with their testimony.

“The key to the wife’s claim will be that . . . they had this plan to buy tickets together and share the winnings. Really that is going to be the nub of the case,” Bytensky told CTV News Channel on Thursday.

The couple is said to have been living together for over two years, and was known to regularly buy lottery tickets.

Bytensky said the woman’s best hope for claiming a portion of the money could hinge on emails and texts.

“There may be emails that they have exchanged, or text messages, that they have exchanged in terms of ‘did you buy the lottery tickets this week’ or ‘did you remember to pick up our tickets.’ That kind of communication sometimes is very revealing,” he said. “If there isn’t something along those lines, then really it is going to come down to one person’s word against another.”

Bytensky added these types of matters are regularly settled outside of a court room, even though they are often far more complicated than other lottery disputes.

He said, unlike office lottery pools for example, where participants typically outline formal rules to divide up winnings, such formalities are less common among romantic couples.

“I’m not really sure there is much you can do to protect yourself,” Bytensky said. “It’s not unprecedented. I’m sure it will happen again.”

In an email to CTV News, officials with OLG say they cannot provide a defined timeline for when the prize claim review process will be completed.