Help Employees Maximize HSAs’ Value in Three Steps
Approximately 22 million Americans have selected a health savings account (HSA) coupled with a high-deductible health plan according to America’s Health Insurance Plans. And the rise in these consumer-directed options shows no signs of slowing down as employers continue to seek ways to slow premium growth. But not all employees are entirely clear on how to use an HSAs to realize the plans’ full value.
Three Steps to Help Employees Maximize HSA Value
Here are three things you can do as an employer to help employees make the most of these savings vehicles.
Boost Participation Through Communication: When offering an HSA, be sure to clearly communicate how the plan works. Describe the details of participation, how to use the plan to offset high out-of-pocket costs, and the fact that HSAs are not just for short-term savings but can be part of a longer-term investment strategy as well. And keep up communication throughout the year—not just at open enrollment.
Tell the Triple-Tax Benefit: Remind participants that HSAs offer three times the tax advantages. Specifically, the contributions are tax deductible (or pretax, if made through payroll deductions), savings grow tax free, and owners can withdraw funds tax free for qualifying medical expenses, which include everything from regular doctor’s office visits to prescriptions, dental treatments and acupuncture.
Remind about Retirement Savings: HSAs offer a big benefit over FSAs and HRAs since the contributions roll over from year to year. And they’re portable, meaning owners can keep their accounts even when they retire. So even if employees don’t use the accounts for medical expenses now, they should be encouraged to contribute the max so they can use the money in the future, making them part of a worker’s overall retirement savings strategy.
Help your workforce embrace the HSA, for their benefit and yours. Learn more about HSAs in our employer FAQ, or contact our team to get answers to specific benefits questions.