Skip to main content
CareFirst Learning Site

Making Manual HSA Contributions and Their Tax Benefits

Both payroll and manual contributions made to your HSA throughout the tax year offer the same tax benefits. Here's what you need to know to maximize your those benefits, and instructions for making a manual contribution to your account.

One of the biggest reasons to take advantage of health savings accounts (HSAs) is the tax benefits. HSAs feature a triple tax benefit that consists of:

  • Reduce taxable income - HSA contributions through payroll are made pre-tax, which lowers tax liability on paychecks. Manual contributions are tax deductible when filing taxes each year.
  • Tax-free earnings - Interest growth earned on HSA funds is never taxed.
  • Tax-free distributions - HSA funds are not taxed when used for eligible expenses. 

If you have an HSA through your job, you may choose to make HSA contributions automatically through your paychecks. It's a great way to ensure your HSA receives regular funding. However, if you don't reach the HSA annual max contribution through your payroll contributions, it may be beneficial to make manual contributions to your HSA to get a larger tax break - or simply to enjoy a larger account balance. You'll still receive all the same tax benefits from a manual contribution as you would from payroll contributions.

CareFirst will help make sure you have the documentation you need to report all of your contributions, both automatic payroll and manual contributions. We will send you Form 5498-SA each year, which reports all of your HSA contributions throughout the tax year. You can also use your tax year statement on the Member Portal to ensure the reporting is accurate. Since the tax year extends into April each year instead of ending on December 31st, CareFirst will send you a revised 5498-SA by May 31st if you make any contributions that need to be reflected on the form.

When you have collected your documentation, you will need to fill out Form 8889 and attach it to Form 1040. Form 8889 reports all of your HSA contributions and withdrawals to the IRS to ensure you receive your appropriate tax benefits. If you choose to use tax preparation services, many will fill this form out for you, if you can provide your contribution and withdrawal information for the year. 

For more on tax forms, see HSAs and Filing Your Taxes

HSA contribution limits 

The table below displays the current HSA contribution limits. Current contribution information can be found on the U.S. Department of Treasury website at

Tax Year Individual Coverage Limits Family Coverage Limits
2021  $3,600  $7,200 
2022 $3,650 $7,300

Once age 55, members can contribute an additional $1,000 towards their HSA (either individual and family coverage). 

Can I still make HSA contributions for the last tax year?

The IRS is allowing HSA holders to make HSA contributions for the 2020 tax year until May 17, 2021. Account holders can also make withdrawals or excess contributions up to this deadline.

Three states affected by severe winter storms, Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, were granted an additional extension. Members filing in these states now have until June 15, 2021 to make HSA contributions and excess contribution withdrawals for the 2020 tax year.

Typically, the contribution deadline for HSA contributions is April 15, but that is not in effect this year.

To make a contribution for 2021, you can log in at and click Make a Deposit to transfer funds directly from their bank account. Or, you can send a check with a contribution form to Further.

How much have I already contributed for the current year?

Log in to see your most recent statement. Your statement should include how much you've contributed for 2021.

How to make a manual contribution

One-time deposits can be made from your personal bank account into your HSA account. You can make online contributions anytime by authorizing withdrawals from your savings or checking account or mailing your contributions to CareFirst. 

Make a one-time deposit on

  1. Sign in at and select your spending account profile.
  2. Choose Make a Deposit from the I Want To... menu. 
  3. Click Make a One-Time Deposit.
  4. Enter the amount you want to transfer and click Next.
  5. Select the bank account you want to transfer the money from.
  6. Enter the date that the transfer will be posted.
  7. Enter the tax year for the transfer.
  8. Agree to the terms and conditions for making a deposit.
  9. Click Make Deposit.  

Schedule a recurring monthly deposit

You can set up reoccurring deposits from your personal bank account. You can choose both the amount and the date that deposits are added to your HSA each month. 

Schedule a recurring monthly deposit on

  1. Sign in at and select your spending account profile.
  2. Choose Make a Deposit from the I Want To... menu. 
  3. Click Set up a Recurring Deposit.
  4. Enter the amount you want to transfer and click Next.
  5. Select the bank account you want to transfer the money from.
  6. Choose which day of the month you'd like the deposit to be initiated.
  7. Agree to the terms and conditions for making a deposit.
  8. Click Make Deposit.