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HSA vs FSA

Wondering how an HSA is different from a Health Care Flexible Spending account (FSA)? Here’s how:

Health Savings Account Flexible Spending Account
When to Use You can use the HSA to pay for eligible medical, dental, and vision expenses under the Bronze, Bronze Plus, or Silver coverage levels. You can use the Health Care FSA to pay for eligible medical, dental, and vision expenses under any coverage level.
Contributions You can contribute to your account before taxes. For 2021, the annual limits set by the IRS are $3,600 for individual coverage, and $7,200 for family coverage. If you’re age 55 or older (or will turn age 55 during the plan year), you can also contribute an additional $1,000 catch-up contribution. You can contribute to your account before taxes, up to the $2,750 annual limit.
Rollovers Unused dollars roll over from year to year. The funds are always yours to keep, even if you leave the company or retire. You can only roll over up to $500 from year to year.
Earning Interest The money in your HSA earns interest. The money in your FSA does not earn interest.
Debit Cards Yes, a debit card is available. Yes, a debit card is available.
Investment Option You can open an investment account when your balance reaches $1,000. You cannot invest your FSA balance.

Which Account Should I Use

If you enroll in the Bronze, Bronze Plus, or Silver coverage level, you can use an HSA, a Health Care FSA, or both an HSA and Health Care FSA. If you contribute to an:

  • HSA or Health Care FSA, you can use your account to pay for qualified medical, dental, and vision expenses.
  • HSA and Health Care FSA, your Health Care FSA will be “limited use” and can only be used to pay for qualified dental and vision expenses. However, once you meet the medical plan deductible, then it can be used toward qualified medical expenses as well. Your HSA can be used for qualified medical, dental, and vision expenses.

If you enroll in the Gold or Platinum coverage level, you can use the Health Care FSA to pay for qualified medical, dental, and vision expenses.


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