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FSA & HSA

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)

Employer-sponsored flexible spending accounts (FSAs) are benefit plan arrangements that allow employees to pay for certain health care or dependent care expenses on a pre-tax basis. There are two FSA options. A Health Care FSA is an alternate way of paying your share of your health care costs. In the same manner, a Dependent/Child Care FSA reimburses you for expenses for dependents and childcare which are necessary to allow you and your spouse to work.

When you create an FSA, you choose to have a specific amount of your annual salary withheld from your paycheck and deposited to your FSA. These withholdings are on a pre-tax basis. Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA's) are benefit options designed to increase your disposable income by reducing the amount of taxes you pay. An FSA enables you to use pretax dollars to pay for qualified health care expenses which are not reimbursed under any health care plan or insurance plan, while a Depenent Care FSA pays for your qualified dependentchild care expenses. A unique new feature is the use of a DEBIT CARD to facilitate the ease of using your FSA dollars. However, FSA funds are not interchangeable.

Flexible spending accounts offer significant tax advantages. Employees do not pay federal income, state income or FICA taxes on the salary they contribute to a FSA plan. Employers, in turn, do not pay matching FICA (7.65%) and FUTA taxes because employees' gross incomes are significantly reduced. A health care FSA, which allows employees to pay co-payments and deductibles with tax-free dollars, can go a long way to helping employees shoulder their share of the burden. FSAs are excellent tools for employees in savings significant tax dollars especially in this day of rising health care costs.

Health Savings Accounts (HSA)

A Health Savings Account (HSA) helps you save money on health care, by making you a part of the medical services decision process. HSAs are designed to help you manage medical expenses and reduce the continuing rising of health care expenses. Equally as important, the money you save remains part of your retirement account, even if you leave your present employer. You can also save the money in your account and grow your account through investment earnings. Funds in the account can grow tax-free through investment earnings, just like an IRA in short, if you don't use all the money in your HSA for medical expenses, it can accumulate as tax-free savings for your retirement. One final benefit, HSAs can pay for many more procedures than were ever allowed before by government sponsored programs. Health Savings Accounts help you save money on unavoidable expenses and build investment savings for your retirement.

Account funds are used to cover medical expenses before the plan deductible has been met. Unspent account balances accumulate and acccrue interst from year-to-year. Unlike amounts in Flexible Spending Accounts that are forfeited if not used by the end of the year, unused funds remain available for use in later years. Once the health plan's annual deductible has been met, coverage resembles conventional insurance, typically in the form of a preferred provider organization (PPO) with little-to-no cost sharing for in-network services, and limits on total out-of-pocket costs.

Contact Information:

Landmark Insurance Associates, Inc.

5388 East Mountain Street
Stone Mountain, GA 30083

Tel: 770-498-6969
Fax: 770-498-1969