Flex Your Spending Muscle  FSA Eligible
 
Products that have this symbol are health-related items that are most likely to be eligible for reimbursement using Health Savings Accounts, FSAs, or Flex Benefits. In many cases these benefits do not roll over and are gone if you do not use them by the end of the year. Stock up now on these items using your remaining FSA or Flex Benefits.
 
A flexible spending account is a benefit many U.S. employers offer. The account allows you to pay for eligible medical, dental, and vision expenses with before-tax money.
 
If you expect to have medical, dental, and vision expenses in the year ahead that wonít be covered by your health insurance, itís a smart idea to pay for them out of a flex spending account if your employer offers one.
 
What Expenses Are Eligible?
Medical, prescription, dental, and vision costs are all eligible for a flex spending account. Anything that the IRS considers a deductible medical expense is eligible if itís not reimbursed by your health insurance. Some examples of eligible expenses include acupuncture treatments, crutches, braces, laser eye surgery, fertility treatments, deductibles, co-pays, and fees that are more than the amount covered by your insurance. Even some everyday over-the-counter things, such as contact lens solutions, are eligible. 
                      
 
How It Saves You Money
A flex spending account saves you taxes because your taxable income is reduced by the amount you put into the account. It also gives you more spendable income for medical, dental, and vision expenses since it allows you to pay for them with pre-tax money.
 
Decide How Much You Want to Contribute
If your employer offers a flex spending account, you may enroll once per year during the open enrollment period. Before you sign up, youíll need to decide how much you want to contribute to the account over the course of the year. Itís really important to be conservative when making your estimate because this is a ďuse it or lose itĒ account. If you havenít used all the funds in the account by the end of the year, you donít get the money back.
 
To estimate how much to contribute to the account, make a list of the out-of-pocket medical, dental, and vision expenses you expect for yourself and your dependents for the upcoming year. Again, make a conservative estimate so you donít risk losing any of the money you put into the account.
 
How It Works
Throughout the year, contributions will be deducted from your paychecks and put into your flex spending account. The full amount that youíll contribute in the year ahead is actually available to you for eligible expenses from the get-go. You donít need to wait for money to accumulate in the account before you use it.
 
When you pay for out-of-pocket medical, dental, or vision expenses, you simply submit your receipts to the plan administrator with a claim form to get reimbursed. When the calendar year is over, you have up to three months to submit expenses for it.
 
So if you expect to have eligible out-of-pocket expenses next year, remember to sign up for a flex spending account if your employer offers one. Youíll save on taxes!