What is a Health Savings Account and How Do I Use It If I Want To?
Health Savings Accounts or HSA’s, are financial accounts that individuals and families can set up that set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualified medical expenses. Translated – it’s an easy way to save money to help pay for medical expenses. HSA’s have been around for years and are very slowly gaining in popularity. In most cases they are a mandatory option for medical insurance coverage. Chances are you may have one, or at least have the option to have one, and you may not even know it. We recommend that you contact your medical insurance and double check if you have one. Some HSA’s are even available through your financial institution. If you do have an HSA and have been putting money into one…a whole word of opportunity opens up for you.
Each year HSA’s change a bit, primarily how much you are allowed to put into one. According to HealthCare.gov
For 2019, if you have an HDHP, you can contribute up to $3,500 for self-only coverage and up to $7,000 for family coverage into an HSA. For 2020, if you have an HDHP, you can contribute up to $3,550 for self-only coverage and up to $7,100 for family coverage into an HSA. HSA funds roll over year to year if you don’t spend them. An HSA may earn interest or other earnings, which are not taxable
So if you’ve been putting money into an HSA in 2019 you are absolutely entitled to use those funds for medical expenses, either to help cover a high deductible or even to cover elected procedures, like LASIK or an upgrade in your Cataract Lenses. The official language from the IRS is as follows
“You can include in medical expenses the amount you pay for eye surgery to treat defective vision, such as laser eye surgery or radial keratotomy.”
Many people use their Health Savings Account as a way to save up funds for a desired surgery that is not covered by their insurance, again like LASIK. The only real problem with HSA’s is that they generally have a cap. This means once you have reached the limit of what you can contribute to your HAS, you must use the funds before you can add more. Quite often people will build up a bit of savings to help with an elective procedure, or to pay down the deductible costs of their medical insurance.
We strongly encourage you to find out the details of your HAS if you have one, and definitely look into starting one if you don’t. HSA’s are a fantastic way to have funds available if you chose to move forward with a non-covered procedure like LASIK, or upgrade to a higher class of Intraocular lens.
Pacific ClearVision is here to help you. While we are not insurance or tax professionals, we can help you figure out the right questions to ask to start. Give us a call at 541-343-5000 or click here to book your appointment today.