Dear susan denton,
Qualified vs. Non-Qualified Expenses
Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) can help you save in order to pay for many
different medical expenses, and using your HSA correctly helps to ensure that
these funds are available to you tax-free.
HSA funds are to be used to pay for qualified
medical expenses in order to be
treated as a tax-free distribution. Qualified expenses include products and
services such as doctor’s visits, prescription medication, eye exams and
glasses/contacts, dental cleanings and braces, over-the-counter medications
Please also note:
An HSA accountholder may use funds in their account to pay for the qualified
medical expenses of their spouse and dependents, even if they are not covered
by the same qualified high deductible health plan.
There are some expenses that are eligible for payment from the HSA that may
not be eligible under your health insurance plan, and thus may not apply to
your deductible. For example: laser eye surgery or the purchase of nicotine
gum for smoking cessation are eligible HSA expenses, but not eligible under
most health plans. Eligible expenses
are subject to change. What if I’ve used my HSA for something that’s not a qualified expense?
If you have used your HSA funds for non-medical purchases, this is considered a non-qualified expense and must be
noted as such on Form 8889 submitted with your income tax reporting for the year. You will be required to pay tax
on the total amount, as well as a 20% penalty excise tax (the penalty does not apply if over age 65.)
If you have mistakenly used your HSA for non-qualified expenses, you can reimburse your account before filing your
taxes. By doing so, you may avoid the taxation and penalties on those expenses. To learn how to properly document
your expenses or process a reimbursement deposit to your account, contact the Customer Support Center. Remember, this must be completed before you file your federal tax return for the year in which the mistaken
See the following page for examples of qualified and non-qualified expenses
Reminder – Keep Those Receipts!
Remember to keep the receipts from your HSA expenses in your tax file for the year in order to properly document
your usage of the health savings account.
HSA Qualified Expenses
A list of qualifying expenses is provided in IRS Publication 502. You may view this document within your online
account at Below is a list of qualified expenses as defined by the IRS. This list is not complete,
but includes a representative sample of qualified expenses. The list is subject to change by the IRS.
Long-Term Care / Long Term Care Insurance
Weight-Loss Program Fees to treat obesity, etc.
NOTE: Due to Health Care Reform legislation, over-the-counter medications are no longer considered
qualified expenses (except Insulin) unless you have a doctor’s prescription.
Although many expenses are eligible for payment from the HSA, there are some items which are excluded. HSA funds
generally cannot be used for the following.
Insurance Premiums - except COBRA/Long Term Care
Medicines and Drugs from Other Countries
Personal Use Items (toothbrush, toothpaste, etc.)
Hair Transplant or purchase of Hair growth
Weight Loss Program Fees unless for treatment of disease (ex:
Expenses that are not deemed “medically necessary” by the IRS
Expenses for general health (vitamins, food, etc.)
If you have any questions about whether or not an expense is eligible for payment from your health savings account, please contact:
HSA Customer Support Center
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