Thursday, December 16, 2004
More Bang for Your Buck: Flexible Spending
Use it or lose it. If you own a flexible spending account, you have about two weeks to consume what you've earned, or the funds are gone forever. But in tonight's more bang for the buck, we found there are actually ways to use the money on everything from prescriptions to presents - and it's all legal.
WSVN -- Out with the old, in with the new. Come new years eve, it's say hello to 2005 and say goodbye to your flexible spending account.
All those pre-tax dollars you accrue for health-care costs come with one stipulation: they don't carry over past December 31st.
Accountant Earnie Hartman: "Between you and your family you should be able to find a place for all those dollars that you have saved throughout the year."
No need to sell yourself short. Accountant Ernie Hartman suggests flex spenders just have to be more creative with their cash.
Patricia Rahmankhah: "There's really no excuse not to spend all the money."
Patricia Rahmankhah spent all of her money. She needed to empty her account so she spent $3,000 dollars on dental work.
Patricia: "One of the reasons I like the plan is because it was deducted from payment."
But dental work is just the beginning. An FSA Is also a great way to save up on over the counter medication, pregnancy protection, and fertility treatments.
Ernie Hartman: "Things like birth control and fertility are considered medical related."
A big screen TV can also be medical related if your doctor will sign off on it.
You just have to prove your eyes need a bigger picture and your ears need better sound.
Ernie: "If you can provide evidence that it is medically related than you're very likely to be allowed that reimbursement."
Even pets will be covered if proven medically necessary.
Ernie: "If you have an appointment with a psychologist and they recommend that you require a pet for your mental well being than you can duct the cost of maintaining the pet."
Pat's glad she didn't waste her flexible savings account. Her new dental work is finally giving her something to smile about.
Patricia: "It feels great. I'm very glad I did it. I waited a long time."
Also remember the cost of using your car to drive to medical appointments is deductible.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Hartman & Hartman
6363 Taft Street
Hollywood, FL 33024