The 411 on FSA Reimbursements

Flexible spending accounts are a popular option for employer health insurance. Here’s what to know about FSA reimbursements.

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If you or your employees have an FSA, it’s important to brush up on FSA reimbursements. If you’re wondering what FSA reimbursements are, how your health provider handles these queries and what you should do for submitting claims, here’s what you need to know.

How do FSA reimbursements work?

Having an FSA means that you’ll at some point be asking for reimbursements on medical expenses incurred. But how exactly do these reimbursements work?

There are multiple ways a person can be reimbursed for their FSA expenses. It all depends on what type of FSA you have, and which special regulations have been outlined with your provider.

Also, keep in mind that when it comes to your dependents, you can only claim reimbursements for children that are under 13 (check out more on dependent care FSAs). Additionally, some health care insurance providers give their clients a specific credit card that’s reserved only for tracking healthcare expenses.

The two main ways to submit a claim are automatic and manual. Both types of claims require that you accompany your claim with the proper proof and documentation, however, so that’s a standard which all FSA holders need to follow.

Automatic Claims Submission

One main way that you can receive reimbursement is through an automatic claims submission. As long as you don’t have a limited use FSA, and your medical expenses were incurred at a pharmacy or provider in your network, your claim will be processed automatically.

Manual Claims Submission

Claims and expenses incurred outside the network are responsible for completing a healthcare FSA form manually. Specifically, people in this situation will be responsible for submitting a claim form alongside a completed form.

Dependent Care FSA Reimbursement

Similarly to the manual claims submission, you’ll need to submit documentation directly if you’re claiming for a dependent. Simply keep all of your information for the dependent, who must be under age 13, and email or fax it to your provider.

How long do you have to submit a claim to FSA?

Most FSA reimbursement claims are required to be submitted within 90 days that the expense was incurred. While this is a general standard, there are many special situations and regulations which might determine something different. That’s why you should always check with your employer to be sure when you can submit an FSA claim — that way you know you don’t miss any opportunities to get paid back.

What is the Deadline for FSA Reimbursement?

As discussed above, you typically have 90 days to submit your FSA reimbursement. However, some plans might also include a grace period, in which you’d have additional time to submit your claim. You might have as much as two and a half months following through the end of your plan to do so. Carryovers are another situation with might apply. If you have leftover, unused funds in your account at the end of the year, a carryover allows you to bring up to $500 of those initial funds into the next year.

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