Earlier this year, Amazon.com announced it will now accept pre-tax healthcare benefits cards as a form of payment. The giant online retailer joins other companies, like FSAStore.com, HSAStore.com, and Walgreens, (among others) as online shopping options for people with a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA). This is good news!
People have been shopping online for well over a decade now, using debit and credit cards. For FSA and HSA account holders, having more places to use their healthcare benefits card could result in more savings and access to eligible items.
Many online stores help shoppers by labeling their healthcare products. If you search for “FSA” or “HSA”, most websites will lead you to those specific items. For instance, if you’re looking for bandages, non-medicated bandages are eligible whereas those that are medicated are not. Using the search tool can help filter out items that are not eligible and avoid unauthorized use of your benefit funds.
Using an FSA or HSA card gives you quick, convenient access to your benefit dollars. Plus, it helps reduce the amount of reimbursement claims you have to submit. To buy qualified products using a healthcare benefits card online, most stores require you to create an account.
Once you create the account, log in and enter your benefits card as a payment option. In addition to the item cost, you may be able to pay sales tax and shipping costs with your FSA. You’ll have to check.
One thing to keep in mind is that, depending on the store and how your account manager has your card set up, not all purchases may be verified. That means you could accidentally buy a non-eligible product with your card. If that happens, you have to reimburse your account or risk facing a penalty.
Here is a short list of eligible healthcare products:
Qualified expenses must be approved by the IRS. According to IRS Publication 502:
Medical expenses are the costs of diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, and the costs for treatments affecting any part or function of the body. These expenses include payments for legal medical services rendered by physicians, surgeons, dentists, and other medical practitioners. They include the costs of equipment, supplies, and diagnostic devices needed for these purposes.
Medical care expenses ease or prevent a physical or mental defect or illness. They don’t include stuff like vitamins or a vacation, items or services that are good (but not medically necessary) for your overall well being.
If you have questions about using your healthcare benefits card online, filing a reimbursement claim, or a question about eligible expenses, contact your benefits administrator.