Low balance in your HSA? Need to see a doctor?

Everyone needs health care at some point in time, but not everyone has prepared accordingly, or in a financial position to take care of surprise expenses. This often occurs with people who own Health Savings Accounts.  The good news is that if you understand the tools you have access to with your HSA plan, you can recover quickly if you are HSA educated!

Here is the game plan if you find yourself in this predicament:

First, take care of your health.  Go to the doctor, stay in network, and you’ll get the network discounted price. Have the doctor send a claim to the insurance company, it will be reduced, and then a bill will come to you for the reduced network rate. Once received, you can use your small balance in the HSA to pay for a portioin, or you can deposit enough money into the HSA account before the bill arrives and pay the whole bill with your HSA.  This maximizes your HSA tax deduction.

Or, IF  you have an HSA savings account account already established, you can pay the bill, with other monies, and then fund the tax deductible HSA contribution later this year, and reimburse yourself tax free for your out of pocket expense by keeping the receipt.

If the doctor demands payment, ask them if you can pay the network discounted price, or cash price. Either way, have them send in the claim so the charge is reduced and put towards your deductible. If the reduced price is lower than what you already paid them, the doctor owes you the difference. And vice versa.

The other option is to search for prices online for a cheaper doctor visit on our HSA Consumer physician section, and use your HSA account to pay for it, or not.  Health Savings Account cover a list of eligible expenses whether it’s covered by insurance or not.

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