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5 Ways to Help Employees Use Year-End FSA Balances

by John Stebbins on Dec 17, 2018 5:29:41 PM

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) can be a valuable way for employees to set aside pre-tax dollars to pay for certain out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. But unlike Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), the unused funds generally don’t roll over from year to year unless your plan’s design allows for a carryover of up to $500.

To help your workers utilize the funds before the “use it or lose it” deadline of March 15, 2019, be sure to remind them about an FSA’s eligible expenses – which include some items that health plans may not cover like vision and dental. (You can get a list of eligible FSAs here.) Then educate them about ways to maximize the benefits of these accounts before they expire. For example, to help employees take full advantage of their FSA, make them aware of the following savings opportunities:

  • Stock Up on Supplies: If employees use blood sugar testing supplies, for example, they can purchase large quantities this year.
  • Baby Planning: For those workers who may be thinking about starting a family in 2019, items like pregnancy tests and breast pumps can all be bought with FSA funds now.
  • Schedule Specialty Services: If they need it, employees should try to squeeze in another acupuncture or chiropractic visit before the end of the year since both can be paid for with an FSA.
  • Stay Sun Safe: FSAs can be used to cover the costs of prescription sunglasses and sunscreen that’s at least 30 SPF.
  • It’s all in the Family: Remind employees that FSA funds can be used for medical dependents as well so schedule any eligible treatment for family members who may need it.

To learn more about FSAs and how they can be used to help your workers offset the costs of health and related expenses, contact Complete Payroll Solutions’ benefits group at 877.253.9020.


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