Clarity on the Future of HSAs (and Demise of FSAs)?

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26 May 2009


  • Red,
    I agree completely that this is big news! The fact that the committee is putting out proposals for paying for a program that has yet to be announced seems backward. It may lead to some deductions about what healthcare reform policy decisions might be made, from what was intended to simply be a list of (artificially limited to healthcare tax credits) potential tax revenue options.

    I vehemently oppose the elimination of HSAs (and FSAs for that matter), and removal of the employer tax benefits for providing health insurance only exacerbates the uninsured problem. However, if the reform plan is paid for by removing employer tax benefits of health insurance premiums, it stands to reason that all tax-advantaged reimbursement plans would be impacted in some fashion.

    Another important factor here is the widespread use of FSAs and more recently HRAs in the union sector, making this a much more difficult area for current political leaders to tamper with.

  • Jeff,

    Your comment draws out the fact that the Senate Finance Committee's suggestions were likely very much of a theoretical "dialing for dollars" exercise, unencumbered by political realities.

    If FSAs (and HRAs) were to be severely limited or even eliminated, some employers, unions and companies in congress persons' home districts would be negatively impacted. I'm sure many of them wouldn't go down quietly.

    That aside, I think many people in the healthcare banking industry a breathing a collective sigh of relief that HSAs aren't on the chopping block...