As you get toward the end of your plan year, it's important to think about what to do with any remaining funds in your flexible spending account (FSA). Most of the funds you set aside in your FSA may need to be spent before the end of the plan year because you may lose what you don't spend. Unfortunately, unlike a health savings account (HSA), you don't get to keep your FSA money as long as you want.
Your employer may allow up to $500 of your FSA funds to rollover to the next year. Check with your employer to confirm whether or not your plan includes the ability to do that.
Below are some helpful tips to ensure you’re spending your FSA wisely:
What can you spend your FSA dollars on?
Use your FSA to pay for tax qualified out-of-pocket expenses that your health plan doesn’t cover. Your FSA can pay for medical, vision or dental expenses such as:
- Flu shots
- Prescription sunglasses
- Sunscreen (30 SPF or higher)
- Dental care
- And much more! Visit the Eligible Expenses page for a searchable list of IRS-approved expenses that are covered by your FSA.
An FSA is unique, as you can use FSA funds on personal medical expenses and any medical dependent’s expenses. For example, if your 23-year-old daughter is home from college, you could buy her flu shot with your FSA funds. Remember, this dependent does not need to be covered by your health plan.
Need a refresher on what is an FSA and how it works? Visit the Learning Center’s Introduction to FSAs. The information features details on using your account and managing your account.
Know your FSA balance
You can check your current balance by signing into www.carefirst.com/myaccount, logging into the CareFirst mobile app, or by calling customer service. Understanding exactly how much you have in your FSA will help you avoid any surprises when paying for health care related expenses.
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