Flexible Benefits Plans
What is a Flexible Spending Account?
If you paid for any out of pocket medical or dependent care expenses this year and are not currently enrolled in the University’s Flexible Spending Account plan, you are paying more in taxes than you would have if you were enrolled in the program. A flexible spending account allows you to take money from your compensation and place it into an account for medical and dependent care expenses. These funds are not taxed, thereby potentially saving you hundreds of dollars. The money put aside in the account is then used by you to pay eligible medical and dependent care expenses. These medical payments can be made via the debit card provided or you can make the payments and request reimbursement from the funds in your account. Keep in mind that if you enroll in the CDHP and choose an HSA you cannot enroll in a traditional medical FSA, and your spouse cannot have a full scope FSA, but you can have a Limited Purpose FSA.
Maximum Limits for Flexible Spending Accounts
The Flexible Benefits annual maximum contribution amount for healthcare and medical expenses, per IRS limits, is $2,550. The Flexible Benefits annual maximum contribution amount for dependent care expenses is $5,000. You cannot use Flexible Benefits Dependent Care and take a tax credit on your tax form for the same dependent day care expenses.
How do I enroll?
Current employees who participated in Flexible Benefits last year, must enroll each year they wish to participate during the Enrollment Period in the fall. New employees have 30 days from the date of hire to enroll by using your Social Security Number as the Member ID (no dashes or spaces). Enroll Now!
What's New for 2017?
- The University of Tennessee is changing from the grace period method to the carry over method. This means that you will no longer be able to use claims dated past December 31st for your prior year plan, instead you will be allowed to carry over up to $500.00 into your 2018 plan.
- The Flex Visa card will no longer have Dependent care amounts loaded to it, so you will not be able to use the cards at your child care provider.
Using the PayFlex Card
The PayFlex card provides a simple way to spend the money in your PayFlex account for eligible expenses. When you receive the PayFlex card in the mail, call the number on the card to activate it and get your personal identification number (PIN). To use your card, swipe and select either "debit" or "credit." Some merchants may require you to select "debit". This means you'll need to enter your PIN to complete the transaction.
What can I pay for with my card?
You can use the card to pay for eligible expenses allowed under the plan. These generally
include: deductibles, copays, and coinsurance; prescriptions; dental and vision costs.
What if I don't use my card to pay for an expense?
You can pay for an eligible expenses with cash, check or a personal credit card. You can then use features online or through the PayFlex Mobile app to pay yourself back. You can also fill out a paper form and fax or mail it to PayFlex.