A Flexible Spending Account (FSA) allows you to pay for eligible out-of-pocket medical and/or dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars (a savings of 15-40% depending on your tax bracket). Health care expenses can quickly add up; and dependent day care or elder care expenses can be even more expensive. An FSA lets you pay these expenses with pre-tax dollars.This means that the money you set aside is not taxed.
Each year that you would like to participate in the FSAs, you must re-enroll and elect the amount you want to contribute to either or both of the FSAs.
Your contributions will be deducted from your monthly paychecks and deposited into your FSA account(s). For 2021, you may contribute up to $2,750 to the Health Care FSA and $5,000 ($2,500 if you are married and file your taxes separately) to the Dependent Care FSA.
How do I get reimbursed for eligible expenses?
Both accounts are administered by P&A Group and the funds are not interchangeable (cannot be transferred from one FSA to another). When you have eligible medical, dental or vision expenses, you may pay for them using your P&A Group-issued debit card, you can authorize them to pay the provider on your behalf or you can pay via another method and request reimbursement. If requested, you can document the expense by sending a copy of your Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from UMR, Kaiser, Delta Dental or VSP to P&A Group.
For eligible dependent care expenses (day care, summer camp, etc.), you must pay your provider and then request reimbursement by submitting a receipt to P&A Group as documentation. You are unable to use the FSA debit card to pay for dependent care expenses. Be sure your receipt includes the following information: the date(s) of service, the expense amount and the name, address and tax identification number of the provider. Under the plan’s grace period, you can typically incur eligible expenses and be reimbursed through your FSA for 2 1/2 months following the end of the calendar year for which you are enrolled. However, under the recently-passed Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, the district made a temporary change to its FSA plan rules which extended the 2021 Grace Period deadline from March 31, 2022 to Dec 31, 2022. The Grace Period for 2022 Flex Spending Account enrollments will revert to the pre-COVID deadlines. Claims must be submitted by the Grace Period deadline or remaining funds will be forfeited. For additional questions on how to process claims, contact P&A Group at 800.688.2611.
What happens if I leave my job during the year?
If you leave the district during the calendar year, you may continue to submit requests for reimbursements as follows:
Health Care FSA: You may continue to submit reimbursement requests for eligible expenses incurred prior to termination. Coverage will end on your final date of employment unless you elect to continue participation on an after-tax basis through COBRA.
Dependent Care FSA: Coverage will end on your final date of employment but you may submit requests for eligible expenses incurred through the end of the calendar year (up to the balance in your account).
Health Care FSA
Eligible expenses for the Health Care FSA include medical, dental, and vision expenses not covered by health care plans, including (but not limited to):
- Copays and deductibles
- Hearing aids and exams
- Physical therapy
- Alcohol/drug rehabilitation
- Ambulance/special transport
- Vision exams, frames/lenses
- Dental exams, x-rays, fillings, caps, crowns and braces
- Mental health care expenses
You do not need to be enrolled in a district health plan to participate in the Health Care FSA.
Dependent Care FSA
Eligible expenses include daycare expenses that allow you and your spouse to work or attend school on a full-time basis. Eligible dependents include children under the age of 13, dependents who are mentally or physically incapable of caring for themselves or day care expenses for an elderly parent who lives with you and is dependent on you for more than half of their financial support. If you are divorced and are a non-custodial parent, seek financial advice as to whether or not you can take advantage of a Dependent Care FSA.
NOTE: The dependent care tax credit may provide a greater tax break than the dependent care FSA for some employees; however, families with an income greater than $25,000 generally benefit by using the dependent care FSA.