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What's an HSA?

A Health Savings Account (HSA) helps you save money to pay for future health care expenses and save on your tax bill, too. Your employer may offer a payroll option that lets you fund your account with pre-tax dollars or, you can contribute to your HSA from your own bank account (up to the annual maximum allowed) and qualify for a deduction on your tax return. For example, if you make $35,000 and contribute $2,000, your taxable income is reduced to $33,000. Plus, you won’t pay any taxes on the interest you earn from your HSA or the money you use to pay for health care expenses.

How can I use the money?

The Internal Revenue Code determines how HSA funds can be used.  Approved expenses include medical, dental and vision products, or services performed by medical professionals to diagnose, treat or prevent diseases for you and your family. To read the list of approved expenses, search for Publication 502 at www.irs.gov.

Read the IRS's list of approved expenses

Are there things I can’t use the money for?

Things that are good for your general health, such as vitamins or vacations, are not considered qualified medical expenses.  You also can’t use your HSA to pay for general expenses such as cosmetic surgery, over-the-counter medications (unless your doctor gives you a prescription), or expenses for which you’ve already been reimbursed.

How do I pay health expenses from my HSA?

  1. You can use the Visa® debit card that comes with your HSA at most pharmacies and doctors’ offices—typically anywhere Visa is accepted –  giving you direct access to your HSA funds.
  2. You can pay your provider directly from the website – saving you time and the inconvenience of sending a check.
  3. You can customize your account so claims are paid automatically – eliminating the need to enter each claim separately.
  4. You can pay yourself back from your HSA if you’ve paid for eligible services out of your own pocket – giving you control over how, and when, to use your HSA.

Help me pay a claim.

Can I get more than one debit card?

You can have up to four debit cards on your account. Your first debit card will be mailed to you automatically. If you’d like additional debit cards, you can request up to three more for you and your family at no additional charge.

I’m 65. Can I use the money for other things?

Yes!  You can use your HSA as usual to pay for eligible health care expenses or supplementary health insurance, it’s still tax-free.  Or, you can use the account for extra retirement income once you reach age 65.  The IRS.Gov website has additional details on any taxes on the amount you withdraw.


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