You can pay for your LASIK procedure using pre-tax money through a tax-free Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA), which could result in saving 20–30% for those who qualify. The year 2023 is quickly approaching, so it’s time to schedule your LASIK consultation with Brinton Vision and start the new year with clearer vision. Continue reading to find out more about HSA and FSA accounts and how they can significantly contribute to the cost of your LASIK procedure.

Why are HSAs and FSAs a popular way to finance a LASIK procedure?

Refractive eye surgery can be paid for with pre-tax money using HSAs and FSAs. These funds may be sufficient to pay for the surgery in full, depending on how much money you is in your account. The tax savings alone make it a popular option for many patients to use their HSA for LASIK. FSAs and HSAs are a popular way to save for and on laser eye surgery procedures, a smart long-term investment, and can be used to cover some or all of the cost of LASIK surgery.

Treat yourself to new vision this new year.

To assist consumers in keeping up with inflation, the 2023 limitations for pre-tax contributions to HSA and FSA accounts increased significantly. Up to $3,050 can be saved by an individual in a health care Flexible Spending Account (also known as a Flexible Spending Arrangement), which is a $200 increase from the 2022 cap. Some employers also contribute to the FSA accounts of their employees, which provides additional savings on qualified expenses to the employee. A Health Savings Account (HSA) is an additional pre-tax health financing choice. Individuals and families may each contribute up to $3,850 and $7,750, respectively, to an HSA in 2023.

What is a Health Savings Account (HSA)?

Health savings accounts are bank accounts that offer tax benefits and enable pre-tax payroll deductions so that you can save money for eligible medical expenses. To qualify for an HSA, you must be enrolled in a high-deductible health plan (HDHP). An HSA allows you to set the amount you would like deducted from your paycheck and deposited into your HSA. Your HSA balance can be used to cover medical costs that your health policy does not cover.

The amount you can save in an HSA for 2023 is, as previously mentioned, $3,850 for an individual or $7,750 per family. The key difference between an HSA and FSA is that an HSA does not have a “use it or lose it” provision at the end of the fiscal year. You can save your money in your HSA until you’re ready to use it and let the money accrue. Money is deposited into your HSA each pay period, and you can only use what you have in your account.

Can You Pay for LASIK with an HSA?

You can use your HSA pre-tax dollars to pay for LASIK eye surgery and other vision correction procedures. The IRS places restrictions on which procedures can be covered by HSA and FSA funds. LASIK, SMILE, and PRK are a few examples of laser vision correction operations that fall under this category and are considered an eligible expense. This is wonderful news since most insurance plans don’t provide any benefit or discount for LASIK or other vision correction procedures.

As mentioned above, there is no time restriction on how long you have to use the funds in your HSA. You can fund your HSA up to the annual contribution limits ($3650 for an individual and $7300 for a family). You can either use it as you go or save money until you have enough to pay for your LASIK surgery. Another great option is to make your monthly finance payments from your HSA account.

Many employers don’t offer both HSA and Flexible Spending Accounts. There are certain exceptions to this rule, so you should speak with your financial adviser or employer for more information on this.

What is a Flexible Spending Account (FSA)?

An HSA and an FSA are similar, yet there are some significant distinctions. Like an HSA, you can save pre-tax dollars through an FSA to pay for any out-of-pocket expense that the Internal Revenue Service determines to be eligible. The types of things covered include things like glasses, contact lenses, refractive surgery like LASIK, cataract surgery, or photorefractive keratectomy, and your prescription drug cost. Your payroll deductions are distributed over the course of the year in accordance with the level of contribution you choose to make each year. The FSA contribution cap for 2023 is $3,050, which is a significant distinction from an HSA.

Even if you haven’t made all of your pre-tax contributions yet, one fantastic feature of an FSA is that you can access the entire annual amount of your contributions at any time. There is a “use it or lose it” clause, though, which states that you must use the entire contribution amount by the end of the year or you will lose those funds. However, certain plans can have a grace period; for more information, speak with your employer.

Can You Pay for LASIK with an FSA?

You can use your FSA dollars to help pay for LASIK or other laser vision correction procedures if you qualify for the procedure. However, the full cost of the treatment, especially when using the most cutting-edge technologies, might not be covered by the annual maximum payment ($3,050 in 2023) in an FSA fund. Brinton Vision offers many other LASIK financing options and accepts cash and credit cards that can help cover the difference.

Are you ready to take the next step in your visual freedom?

You can combine any remaining FSA funds from the prior year with the FSA funds from the current year if your company’s plan offers a “grace period.” There is often a 2.5-month grace period for most FSA funds that can be used toward eligible expenses.

HSA or FSA Planning for Your LASIK Surgery

You can pay a considerable portion of your LASIK procedure pre-tax using either FSA or HSA accounts. Knowing the contribution limits, the exclusions in your personal health insurance coverage, and whether your employer provides an HSA/FSA are all important details.

Planning ahead for your LASIK surgery and coordinating the timing with your doctor is advisable when thinking about how you can benefit from the FSA grace period or HSA rollover. To save money and meet your vision goals, you may consider using the tax advantage an FSA or HSA offer for laser vision correction.

The laws could change at any time, but at this time refractive surgery is an eligible expense for both HSA and FSA accounts. Take advantage of the fact that you can utilize the tax-free money in your FSA and HSA for LASIK or other vision correction procedures while you have the opportunity. We advise all patients to ask their employer for any rules pertaining to their particular plan.

Have you been considering refractive surgery? The doctors at Brinton Vision are happy to assist in determining which of the seven modern refractive surgery options you might be a candidate for. What are you waiting for? Call us today to schedule your consultation.

Dr. Jason P. Brinton is an internationally recognized specialist in the field of LASIK and refractive surgery. He is a graduate of Harvard College, earned his medical doctorate from the Harvard Medical School and is board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology.