Using your FSA to purchase contact lenses is an amazing way to save money on your contacts. How do you save money when you use your FSA, you ask? FSA dollars are not subjected to income tax which means you save money in taxes if you use it to buy contacts!
Said differently, whenever you use an FSA for eligible purchases you are using money that wasn’t taxed so you end up with extra money. FSA coverage of contact lenses is an amazing thing to know because the best contact lenses can cost hundreds of dollars a year – especially if you wear contacts for astigmatism.
Are contacts FSA eligible?
The simple answer is yes, most Flexible Savings Accounts, also known as Flex Benefits do allow for contact lenses and other eye accessories to be covered. The same applies to HSAs or Health Savings Accounts.
However, contact lenses are only covered with your FSA if they are prescription. Only medically necessary procedures and products will be covered by your FSA, so it is important to speak with your benefits administrator if you have any coverage questions. With that said, most plans will cover blue light filtering glasses, so there’s a wide degree of coverage.
How do you use your FSA for contacts?
The first thing you will want to do is see what products qualify for your plan. You can check in with your benefits administrator for this assistance.
Before purchasing anything you will want to make sure that the products are covered by your plan provider.
Contacts can then be purchased on various websites using an FSA or HSA debit card. If you do not have an FSA or HSA debit card, you can pay for the contacts as you normally would, and then send an itemized receipt to your provider for reimbursement.
Contacts can also be purchased in person at a doctor’s office or a distributor the same way.
Your Main Goal Is Saving Money
The main reason to use an FSA is to save money. So what are other ways to save money? I’m glad you asked. Because this contact lens price comparison site allows you to easily which site online offers the most competitive price for your specific contact lens. There’s also a page with contact lens coupons and offers so that you can look for more savings. Boom.
Can you use FSA for contact lens solution?
Yes, you usually can! Although, contact lens solution coverage is plan dependent. In order to find out if contact lens solution is covered by your plan, contact your benefits administrator.
In general, contact lens solution is typically eligible for reimbursement with Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), Health Savings Accounts (HSA), health reimbursement arrangements (HRA), and limited-purpose flexible spending accounts (LPFSA). Solution is typically not eligible for reimbursement with a dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA).
Are there FSA limits?
Yes, health FSA contributions are currently limited by the IRS for each year. The limit is per person so each spouse in the family may contribute up to this amount.
However, your employers may choose a lower contribution limit so it is important to connect with human resources and your benefits administrator to see what your plans allow for. The limit may be adjusted annually.
When you sign up for the FSA during open enrollment you can ask for the limits to see how much you can contribute.
Do FSA dollars always expire?
Yes – FSA dollars typically expire on December 31st of each year, making them a “use it or lose it” type of benefit. Some company plans do allow employees to roll over $500 for the following year.
Some companies also deferred spending to a deadline of March 15. Reach out to your human resources department or benefits administrator to find out what exactly your plan allows.
As you can tell, there is some variability between plans so you’ll just want to dig up the paperwork to see the details about your specific plan so that you can buy your contact lenses with these pre-tax dollars.
Do HSA dollars expire?
No – Health Saving Account (HSA) funds usually roll over every year. As mentioned previously, however, policies vary so it is a good idea to be familiar with the policies of your specific plan so you can make the most of your HSA/FSA money.
HSAs also differ from FSAs because the money can be invested and grow over time. The nice thing is that those dollars go in tax-free, grow tax-free, and can be withdrawn tax-free. Pretty nifty.
How can I avoid losing FSA money?
The simple answer is to spend the funds before the near plan year begins (January 1st). This is why December is a busy contact lens shopping season! If possible try to take advantage of cyber Monday deals while you are at it!
If you are interested in using your FSA money for contacts, make sure you plan ahead and schedule your yearly eye exam with your eye care provider long before the FSA deadline. This will allow ample time to finalize the contact lens prescription and give plenty of time to order the contacts before the yearly deadline.
List of contacts FSA eligible
Contact lenses from the best brands, including Acuvue, Air Optix, DAILIES, Biofinity, and Bausch + Lomb Ultra are all eligible!
Here is a list of some eligible contacts:
- 1 Day Acuvue Define 30 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist 30 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist 90 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist For Astigmatism 30 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist For Astigmatism 90 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist Multifocal 30 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Moist Multifocal 90 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Trueye 30 Pack
- 1 Day Acuvue Trueye 90 Pack
- Acuvue 2
- Acuvue Oasys 1 Day 90 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys 1 Day For Astigmatism 30 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys 1 Day For Astigmatism 90 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys 2 Week 12 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys 2 Week 24 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys 2 Week 6 Pack
- Acuvue Oasys For Astigmatism
- Acuvue Oasys For Presbyopia
- Acuvue Oasys Multifocal
- Acuvue Oasys with Transitions
- Acuvue Oasys with Transitions 25 Pack
- Acuvue Vita 12 Pack
- Acuvue Vita 6 Pack
- Acuvue Vita For Astigmatism
- Air Optix Aqua
- Air Optix Aqua Multifocal
- Air Optix Colors 2 Pack
- Air Optix Colors 6 Pack
- Air Optix For Astigmatism
- Air Optix Night & Day Aqua
- Air Optix Plus Hydraglyde
- Air Optix Plus HydraGlyde For Astigmatism
- Air Optix Plus Hydraglyde Multifocal
- Avaira Vitality
- Avaira Vitality Toric
Bausch + Lomb
- Bausch + Lomb Infuse Daily 90 Pack
- Bausch + Lomb Ultra
- Bausch + Lomb Ultra For Astigmatism
- Bausch + Lomb Ultra For Presbyopia
- Bausch + Lomb Ultra Multifocal For Astigmatism
- Biofinity Energys
- Biofinity Multifocal
- Biofinity Toric
- Biofinity Toric Multifocal
- Biofinity Xr
- Biofinity Xr Toric
- Biotrue Oneday 30 Pack
- Biotrue Oneday 90 Pack
- Biotrue Oneday For Astigmatism 30 Pack
- Biotrue Oneday For Astigmatism 90 Pack
- Biotrue Oneday For Presbyopia 30 Pack
- Biotrue Oneday For Presbyopia 90 Pack
- Clariti 1 Day 90 Pack
- Clariti 1 Day Multifocal 30 Pack
- Clariti 1 Day Multifocal 90 Pack
- Clariti 1 Day Toric 30 Pack
- Clariti 1 Day Toric 90 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus 30 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus 90 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus Multifocal 30 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus Multifocal 90 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus Toric 30 Pack
- Dailies Aquacomfort Plus Toric 90 Pack
- Dailies Colors 30 Pack
- Dailies Colors 90 Pack
- Dailies Total1 30 Pack
- Dailies Total1 90 Pack
- Dailies Total1 Multifocal 30 Pack
- Dailies Total1 Multifocal 90 Pack
- Total 30
- Focus Dailies 30 Pack
- Focus Dailies 90 Pack
- Precision1 Daily 30 Pack
- Precision1 Daily 90 Pack
- Precision1 Daily For Astigmatism 30 Pack
- Precision1 Daily For Astigmatism 90 Pack
- Proclear 1 Day 90 Pack
- Proclear 1 Day Multifocal 90 Pack
- Proclear Multifocal
- Proclear Multifocal Toric
- Proclear Multifocal Xr
- Proclear Toric
- Proclear Toric Xr
- Purevision 2
- Purevision 2 Multifocal For Presbyopia
- Purevision 2 Toric For Astigmatism
- Purevision Multi Focal
Dr. Olivia Burger, O.D. is an optometrist who graduated from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry. She is pursuing a 1-year residency at the UC Berkeley School of Optometry in Vision Science in Primary Care / Contact Lens. Her optometric areas of interest include private practice, contact lenses, and optometric service organizations such as VOSH. In her free time, she enjoys live music and is a freelance concert photographer.