By Roy Ramthun, HSA Consulting Services, CMT Contributor
- Be smart about your health insurance. Instead of paying thousands of dollars for health insurance you may never use, switch to an HSA-qualified insurance policy that covers larger medical bills and use the premiums savings to fund a Health Savings Account (HSA). If you “pay yourself,” you get to keep the money you don’t spend.
- HSAs provide true catastrophic insurance protection. Annual limits on out-of-pocket expenses (e.g., deductibles, copays, coinsurance) apply to all benefits covered by your plan (including prescription drugs). These limits cannot be higher than $6,350 for self-only coverage or $12,700 for family coverage in 2014 (adjusted annually for inflation).
- HSAs put you in charge of your medical care. Having funds in an HSA allows you the flexibility to pay for medical care not covered by your insurance, including benefit exclusions, second opinions, out-of-network treatments, and over-the-counter products. Choose the care that you and your doctor believe is best for you.
- HSAs save you money on taxes. Every dollar you put in your HSA is deductible on your income tax return, up to the annual limits ($3,300 for singles and $6,550 for families in 2014). These limits are adjusted annually for inflation. Individuals age 55 or older can make an additional $1,000 contribution each year until they enroll in Medicare.
- HSAs can be invested and saved for medical expenses in retirement. HSA funds can be invested just like an IRA. Growing your account through investment earnings can help expand your nest egg for retirement. HSA funds can be saved and used to pay for Medicare premiums and out-of-pocket expenses as well as long-term care expenses and insurance premiums.
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Roy Ramthun, “Mr. HSA”
HSA Consulting Services, LLC