With the expansion of the OneBridge Benefits proprietary platform into Flexible Spending Accounts, it’s important to understand the specific purposes and benefits of each of these account types.
First and foremost, all of these Flexible Spending Accounts allow participants to contribute tax-free dollars into OneBridge-administered accounts and use them for qualified health- and dependent care-related expenses; essentially reducing their taxable income and increasing their take-home pay.
Additionally, when being administered on the OneBridge platform, all of these accounts offer the same convenient way to access your FSA funds, including using the Smart OneBridge Visa® Benefits Card for eligible expenses at qualified merchants.
Health Flexible Spending Accounts cover general-purpose health expenses. Everything from co-pays, deductibles and acupuncture to imaging scans, orthodontia and laser eye surgery can be paid for using the OneBridge Benefits-administered Health FSA. You can see the full list of qualified Health FSA expenses here.
The maximum annual election currently allowed by the IRS for a Health FSA in 2019 is $2,700 per individual. However, some employers may set a limit that is less than what the IRS allows. The IRS does also index this election limit annually; hence, it is subject to change in future years.
One very attractive benefit of a Health FSA is that your entire election amount is available for you to use at the start of the plan year.
Limited Purpose Health FSA
A Limited Purpose Health FSA (LPFSA) must be used in conjunction with a Health Savings Account (HSA).
By combining a Limited Purpose Health FSA with an HSA, participants can maximize their pre-tax HSA contributions and enjoy additional pre-tax savings by contributing to a Limited Purpose Health FSA, which they can specifically use to pay for their anticipated dental and/or vision expenses.
The current allowed IRS limit for a LPFSA is also $2,700, but keep in mind employers can set a lower limit.
As with the Health FSA, you can enjoy access to your full election amount at the start of the plan year.
One last important note to make is that this type of FSA can be set up with both a pre- and post-deductible phase, which means that before you meet your health plan deductible, the funds in this LPFSA can only be used for dental and vision expenses. Once your deductible is met, you can use your LPFSA funds to pay for all eligible health care expenses—please be sure to specifically check your plan information with your employer.
Dependent Care FSA
A Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (DCAP) is a pre-tax benefit account used to pay for dependent care services, such as preschool, summer day camp, before or after school programs, as well as child or elder daycare. You can see a full list of qualified Dependent Care FSA expenses here.
To qualify, the IRS does require that the dependent care be necessary for you or your spouse to work, look for work, or attend school full-time.
Unlike with the Health and Limited Purpose Health FSAs, the election limits for DCAP FSAs are not currently indexed by IRS—they haven’t changed since their inception. The limits on the reimbursement amount must be the lesser of:
- $5,000 ($2,500 married filing separately), or
- Earned income of the employee, or
- Earned income of the spouse, or
- $250/$500 deemed income for full-time student, spouse, or disabled.
It’s All Covered by OneBridge
Whether you’re enrolled in a Health FSA or Dependent Care FSA, or both, OneBridge Benefits provides enrollees with a stronger, clearer connection to benefit account management. FSA participants gain access to the OneBridge platform with a single login for all accounts—both HRA and FSA—via both an intuitively designed and fully functioning web portal and mobile application. With either “app,” participants have access to real-time account balance details, claim and debit card information, as well as the ability to specify their personal account preferences. Moreover, participants using either of these tools to submit claims or support a debit card transaction will enjoy a more expedited turnaround.