Use Flexible Spending & Health Savings Accounts for Prescription Glasses
Did You Know?
- All of your FSA funds for the entire year are available January 1st.
- FSA funds usually expire by Dec 31st or by March 15th.
- You may be able to carry $500 of unused FSA funds from the previous year depending on your employer.
- You have to be enrolled in a high-deductible plan (minimum of $1,250 for an individual) to be eligible for a health savings account.
- HSA funds are accrued throughout the calendar year.
- An individual can contribute up to $3,300 a year, and sometimes your employer will make a contribution to the account, just like with a 401(k).
- FSA/HSA funds can be used to purchase prescription eyewear and/or frames.
- FSA/HSA funds can be used whether you have vision insurance or not.
Frequently Asked FSA & HSA Questions
What can I buy with my flexible spending account? Did you know that you can use your flex spending account (FSA) or health savings account (HSA) spending dollars to purchase prescription eyeglasses, prescription contact lenses and prescription sunglasses? RX glasses and contacts are eligible expenses. These funds can be used for prescription eyewear, regardless of whether or not you have vision insurance.
We've provided answers to some of the most commonly asked FSA/HSA questions below. But if you don't see the information you're looking for, please call 800-248-9427 to speak with one of our expert opticians.
Your flexible spending account or health savings account typically covers expenses like prescription drugs, doctor visits and, of course, prescription eyewear! See the list below to find out if your prescription eyewear is covered.
- Eyeglasses with or without lenses (including Readers)
- Prescription sunglasses
- Sunglasses (only if medically necessary and prescribed by a physician)
- Contact lenses and related cleaning/storage solutions
Generally, FSA allowances are available at the start of your "coverage period”. Usually the "coverage period" is defined as one calendar year (starting on Jan. 1st). Also, depending on your employer, you may be able to carry over $500 of unused FSA money from 2014.
Typically, FSA dollars must be used in the same "coverage period" (i.e. calendar year) that the money was put aside. Usually the "coverage period" is defined as one calendar year (ending on Dec. 31st). However, some plans offer a grace period that will allow you to use your remaining FSA dollars until March 15 of the following year. Any unused FSA funds will be lost once your coverage period expires.
HSA dollars never expire and will remain in your account until they are used. If you do not use all of your HSA funds in a given year, the unspent money will roll over into your account for next year.
If you have an FSA or HSA debit card, you can enter that card's information at check-out, just like you would a normal credit card. If you do not have an FSA or HSA debit card, you will have to make your purchase using another credit card and seek reimbursement directly from your FSA or HSA provider. Most FSA or HSA providers will require you to submit a reimbursement form along with an itemized receipt or invoice (which will be emailed to you and included with your package).
For additional information on Flexible Spending Accounts and Health Savings Accounts, see our Guide to HSAs and FSAs Infographic.
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Also see: Reading Glasses, How to Measure Pupillary Distance or PD, What's My Glasses Frame Size?, What Are Progressive Lenses?, Understanding Your Prescription, Need to Order Lenses Only?