Right now it does.
Recently the IRS issued Notice 3013-71, which allows employees with Medical Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA’s) to carryover up to $500 from one FSA plan year to the next. Previously, all monies in an FSA were ‘use or lose’ – That is, nobody was allowed to carryover FSA account balances from one year to the following plan year. Any money not claimed from your FSA account balance at the end of the plan year gets vaporized.
Thankfully, this ruling takes effect automatically in Private Sector Medical FSA’s that do not already have a ‘carryover’ provision (currently some private plans have a grace period of up to 85 days).
For Federal Employees, the problem is that OPM has to change the FSAFEDS regulations in order to implement the IRS’ newly-allowable $500/1-year FSA carryover. Currently FSAFEDS operates Medical Flex Spending Accounts in ‘Use or Lose’ mode.
Until Congress and OPM take action, Private Sector FSAs are a better deal- That is, they are much more ‘Flexible’- than Federal Employee FSAs.
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[2014 Update: According to TriCare’s website, Veterans are eligible for ObamaCare if they choose not to enroll/pay-in to Tricare. See updated post on Veterans and ObamaCare for more info].
This is a follow-up to my original post which noted the fact that
Retired Veterans (and Feds) are ineligible for Obamacare. Too bad, because in some financial circumstances, ObamaCare may provide better coverage per dollar than TriCare or FEHB.
There’s some horrible mis-information about the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) on the internet(s).
I’ve even seen a GovExec article telling Feds that they can opt out of FEHB and go on an ObamaCare exchange (they can’t – see the application form for ObamaCare).
In short, I would not trust any ObamaCare info posted on a webpage that does not end with .mil or .gov.
Here’s a summary of TriCare/ObamaCare mis-information that I’d like to squash right now:
Happy Open Season, Feds!
It’s that time of year again where 95 percent of you do nothing and keep your existing health plan (for good reasons, see below).
For the minority of you who are considering switching plans, FEHB offers you the 3rd party tool PlanSmartChoice.com, which allows you to plug-in some assumptions about your family size and frequency of medical claims. If you’ve used PlanSmartChoice before, it retains the info you input from last year, which is nice. Here’s what it looks like for me: Continue reading
Switching Health Plans due to a ‘Life Changing Event’, change in Employment, or FEHB Open Season? Here’s some land mines to avoid as they apply to High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) and their linked Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Continue reading