Pre-tax account balance availability varies with the account type. Some accounts provide you with the funds in advance even though your contributions are spread over the year. Other accounts only allow you to use what you have contributed to date. The following is an overview of how the various accounts work relative to account balances and contributions.
Health FSA/Limited Purpose FSA
The full election amount is available on your effective date for any Health FSA/Limited Purpose FSA. This means that you have access to your entire election amount (the full balance) before having contributed to the account even though you have not made all the required contributions yet. Over the course of the plan year, you will make incremental contributions toward your total election amount. At the end of the plan year, you will have contributed your full election amount. In summary, you may use the funds in advance, so long as you continue to make payments to the account throughout the year.
Contributions may not be modified in the middle of the plan year unless there is a qualifying life event. To see if your life event qualifies, please refer to the Summary Plan Description or contact your benefits team. Your Summary Plan Description can be accessed on the Vita Flex Consumer Portal at www.vitaflex.net.
Dependent Care FSA
Dependent Care accounts are reimbursement only accounts. This means that you need to have contributed the funds to the account and paid your dependent care provider before you are able to get reimbursed from your Dependent Care account.
If you submit a claim in excess of your current balance, and it is an eligible expense, your claim will roll forward. The excess claim that has been approved (but cannot be reimbursed yet) will be retained in the claims system. Continued reimbursements will be automatically processed. You will continue to receive reimbursements as you make additional contributions to the account.
Contributions may not be modified in the middle of the plan year unless there is a qualifying life event or a significant change in the cost of your dependent care services.
Health Savings Accounts are Cash Balance accounts. This means that you are only able to spend (or receive reimbursement for) funds that you have contributed to the account.
You may direct any portion of the accumulated funds in your HSA to be deposited in an investment account. There is a wide selection of diverse mutual funds into which you may direct your investment funds. To invest your HSA funds, you must have a minimum balance of $2,000 in your account. For more information on HSA plan options, please see the Vita Flex HSA Quick Start Guide.
You may modify your contributions at any time throughout the plan year, subject to the maximum annual contribution limits set by the IRS.
Commute accounts are Cash Balance accounts. This means that you are only able to spend money that you have deposited into the account. The monthly maximum (imposed by the IRS) applies to your pre-tax contributions and pre-tax spending limits. This means that you may not spend more than the monthly IRS limit in any given calendar month regardless of the balance on your account. This limit is imposed independently to parking and transit. If your balance exceeds these monthly limits, it is advised that you reduce your contributions until the balance is within the monthly limit.
You may modify your contributions at any time throughout the plan year, with the restriction that you may only contribute up to the annual pre-tax limit.