HR Fast Facts: Can Employees Make Changes to Their FSA Contributions?

Employees can make changes to their flexible spending account (FSA) contributions in only 3 cases.

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When Can Employees Enroll in Their Company's FSA Plan?

After initial health plan enrollment, employees and employers can make changes to their flexible spending account (FSA) contributions in only 3 cases: before the plan year begins, before a new hire’s effective date, and in the case of a qualifying life event.

FSA contribution changes due to a QLE must reflect the nature of the event. Here are some examples of acceptable and unacceptable changes.

Acceptable changes

  • If an employee’s dependent turns 26, it would be acceptable for the employee to decrease their FSA contribution to reflect the loss of a dependent.
  • If an employee adopt a baby, they may want to increase their elections to accommodate the new medical expenses and/or day care costs for the new family addition.
  • If an employee gets married, they may want to increase their elections to accommodate the new medical expenses for their spouse.
  • If an employee’s spouse loses their job (and therefore loses coverage), it would be acceptable for the enrollee to increase their FSA contribution (or sign up for the first time).

Unacceptable changes

  • An employee wants to reduce their Child & Elderly Care FSA contributions after the birth of a child. Though birth is a QLE, the reduction is not consistent with the QLE.
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