Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)
Frequently Asked Questions
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1. What is a flexible spending account (FSA)?
An FSA is a type of savings account designed to help you pay for eligible out-of-pocket expenses on a pre-tax basis. Ruan offers a health care FSA and a dependent care FSA.
2. What is the difference between a health care FSA and a dependent care FSA?
Health care FSAs are designed to pay for out-of-pocket medical, dental, vision and prescription drug expenses for you and your family. A dependent care FSA is used to pay for the actual care of the dependent, such as day care or elder care, while you or your spouse work or attend school.
3. Who is eligible for an FSA?
Team members eligible for Ruan's benefits program may elect an FSA. You do not have to be enrolled in a company medical plan to participate in a health care FSA. Note that team members enrolled in the Choice Savings medical plan will be automatically enrolled into a flex account.
4. How does an FSA work?
Prior to your effective date, you estimate your out-of-pocket expenses for the plan year. You then make an annual pledge. Each pay cycle, a part of your paycheck will be deducted pre-tax for your flex account. When you have an eligible expense, you access the account to pay your portion of the bill. A health care FSA allows you to be reimbursed up to your annual pledge, even though you may not have paid in the full amount yet. Dependent care accounts are reimbursed only up to your year-to-date contributions.
5. Are there limits on how much I can place into my FSA?
Yes. For a health care FSA, there is a minimum pledge of $100 and maximum of $2,700 for team member contributions. Any company contribution is in addition to this maximum. A dependent care FSA minimum is $100 with a maximum of $5,000 (or $2,500 if married but filing taxes separately).
6. What kinds of expenses can be reimbursed from a health care FSA?
Qualified health care FSA expenses include deductibles, co-pays and co-insurance for out-of-pocket medical, prescription, dental and vision costs, just to name a few. Please refer to your Employee Benefits Guide, or for a complete listing of approved expenses and pre-tax savings examples, please visit www.wageworks.com or ask your tax advisor.
7. How do I get reimbursed from my FSA account?
Heath care FSAs offer several options including a flex debit card, Automatic Health Plan Claim (AHPC) reimbursement, online claims submission, EZ Receipts mobile app or a paper claim form.
For a dependent care account, you must submit a claim form to get reimbursed.
8. What is Automatic Health Plan Claim (AHPC) reimbursement?
After your Ruan medical or dental claim has been processed and your out-of-pocket cost calculated, the information is transmitted to Wage Works. Wage Works uses this data to initiate payment directly to you from your health care FSA account. No additional paperwork is required. To sign up for AHPC reimbursements, login to www.wageworks.com, click "Program Options" and select "Automatic Health Plan Claims."
Note you will still need to use your debit card or file a claim for out-of-pocket vision expenses.
9. What happens if I have a large expense before I've saved enough in my FSA?
With a health care FSA, you may receive your full annual pledged amount immediately upon your effective date, provided you have incurred an eligible expense. A dependent care FSA only reimburses up to your current year-to-date contributions; however, additional reimbursements may be made as you deposit more funds into your account.
10. Can I use my health care FSA to pay for non-medical expenses?
No. Per the IRS, you may only use FSA funds to pay for qualified expenses.
11. Can I have both a heath care FSA and a health savings account (HSA)?
No. You may only have one or the other, but not both, under the Ruan program.
12. What happens to leftover FSA money at the end of the year?
FSA accounts have a two-and-a-half month grace period following the end of the plan year (through March 15) to help participants use up any remaining funds. You then have 45 days to file for reimbursement. After the grace period, any unused funds will be forfeited; therefore, you should estimate your annual pledge carefully and conservatively.
13. What happens to my FSA if I leave the company or lose my medical plan?
If you terminate employment or are no longer eligible for company benefits and do not qualify for COBRA continuation of your flex plan, your account will be closed. You will still have the opportunity to file for reimbursement on qualified expenses incurred prior to your cancellation date. Unused funds will be forfeited.
14. Can I rollover my health care FSA into another medical savings account?
No. IRS regulations do not permit FSA rollovers.
15. Who is considered an eligible dependent under a dependent care FSA?
You may use your dependent care FSA to pay for the care of a dependent that is:
- Age 13 or older who is physically or mentally incapable of self care
- Your spouse, parent or in-law who is incapable of self care and spends at least eight hours a day in your home
16. What types of expenses can be reimbursed under a dependent care FSA?
Nursery school, pre-school, licensed daycare centers, care for disabled dependents at your home or approved government center, or care provided by an individual (provided you can furnish a taxpayer identification number for that person). For examples, please refer to your Employee Benefits Guide or visit www.wageworks.com.
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