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Does a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Cover Lasik?

Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) are particular financial savings accounts that may be arrange by way of your employer and offer you a variety of tax benefits. You possibly can put aside a few of your common earnings to an FSA together with contributions out of your employer (if it makes them). You should utilize FSAs to pay for certified care companies for youngsters below 12 and qualifying adults. Or they can be utilized to reimburse you for certified dental and medical bills. Should you’re contemplating LASIK surgical procedure to your eyes, it’s possible you’ll be questioning whether or not it qualifies as a medical expense.

Key Takeaways

  • Versatile spending accounts are provided by way of employers and canopy certified medical and dental bills.
  • Certified bills embody cost for companies, gear, premiums, and transportation prices.
  • LASIK is the preferred laser process within the U.S. and is one in every of a variety of eye surgical procedures coated below FSA plans.
  • You will need to make an appointment with an ophthalmologist to find out whether or not the process is medically crucial to ensure that it to qualify below your FSA.
  • Be sure to plan forward earlier than you determine to make use of your FSA to cowl the surgical procedure.

What Is a Certified Medical Expense?

A certified medical expense is any value paid towards the analysis, remedy, treatment, or prevention of illness. Prices embody cost for companies to docs, surgeons, dentists, and different medical specialists, in addition to these paid for gear, provides, and different merchandise. Health insurance premiums and transportation prices to get you to and from medical care are additionally deemed certified medical bills.

Should you’re contemplating laser eye surgical procedure and wish to use your FSA to pay for it, you are in luck. In accordance with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), it does qualify as a medical expense for an FSA so long as you make an appointment with an ophthalmologist to first decide whether or not the process is medically crucial.

This implies you need to use the distributions from an FSA to pay for qualifying LASIK procedures. Though LASIK just isn’t the one laser eye surgical procedure coated below an FSA, it’s the preferred laser process in the USA.

Particular guidelines apply to the rollover provision and the grace period for the 2021 tax yr. Underneath the Consolidated Appropriations Act, employers can permit all unused funds to be carried over from 2021 to 2022. Or, employers can prolong the grace interval to 12 months fairly than two and a half months. The impact of both resolution is similar—all unused funds will be carried over and used all through your entire yr. 

Benefits and Disadvantages of a Versatile Spending Account (FSA)

There are numerous professionals and cons of getting and utilizing an FSA to cowl your medical and dental bills. The next are the commonest advantages and disadvantages.

Benefits

  • You should utilize your FSA for different vision-related bills, reminiscent of glasses, contact lenses, eye exams, and optometrist visits.
  • FSA funds are taken out of your paycheck earlier than taxes, saving you cash on bills you’ll pay for anyway. It additionally reduces your taxable income on the finish of the yr.
  • FSAs are solely obtainable by way of employer-sponsored well being care plans, which signifies that employers may also contribute.

Disadvantages

  • FSA funds should be utilized by the tip of the calendar year or they’re forfeited again to your employer. The IRS permits employers to roll over unused worker contributions for a most of two and a half months after the tip of the plan yr to their present FSA.
  • Some employers might not even present a grace interval for his or her staff’ FSAs. That is as a result of it is completely as much as them whether or not to supply one and, in the event that they do, how lengthy it lasts.
Execs

  • You should utilize your FSA for any kind of vision-related bills

  • FSA funds prevent cash and scale back your taxable earnings as a result of they’re deducted earlier than taxes

  • Your employer may contribute to your plan

Plan Forward

LASIK just isn’t coated below medical insurance coverage, and imaginative and prescient insurance coverage might solely offer you a small low cost. This leaves your FSA as the one technique of paying for LASIK until you pay out-of-pocket or take out a medical mortgage.

LASIK procedures are thought of elective operations. An ophthalmologist can offer you an estimate of how a lot your process will value. FSA contributions are capped to a most of $2,750 for 2021 and $2,850 for 2022. By delaying the process, you may have fewer out-of-pocket expenses.

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