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Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) and LASIK Surgery

August 30, 2011

Everything you need to know about using FSA for LASIK eye surgery.

Many of the people who have ditched their glasses or contacts for LASIK eye surgery will most likely tell you that it was one of the best investments that they ever made. Just imagine: no more stumbling out of bed in the morning, reaching blindly for your glasses on the nightstand. No longer waking up to painful, dry eyes caused by accidently sleeping in your contact lenses.

LASIK eye surgery can dramatically change the life of anyone who has ever dealt with frustrating, uncomfortable corrective lenses. Because of this, it is easy to see why many people make the beneficial personal investment for this popular eye surgery year after year.

However, while this popular LASIK eye procedure has become more widely available since it was first introduced years ago, there are still many people across the country who think they cannot afford this life-changing vision procedure.

Luckily, there are many benefits and programs available to these individuals that have made the option of LASIK surgery easier and more readily available than ever before. One such program, the Flexible Spending Account (FSA), is one of the most underutilized benefits offered in the United States and can help to save upwards of $2,000 on LASIK surgery procedures.

What Is A Flexible Spending Account?

A Flexible Spending Account (FSA) is an employer-provided flex spending program that helps individuals use pre-tax dollars from their paycheck to fund qualified medical procedures. Each year, employees are able to deduct a percentage of their paycheck that they would like to set aside for eligible medical expenses. Nearly 85% of large companies, and many smaller ones as well, offer these medical and health care spending accounts.

FSAs also allow employees to set aside their own pre-tax money to cover co-pays, deductibles and other medical expenses that are not normally covered by medical insurance. However, the one downfall to this helpful program is that it follows the “use it or lose it” provision. Any money set aside that is not used by the end of the year is lost for good, not rolled over to the next year. Therefore, it is important to properly plan how much money you want to set aside.

Can FSAs Be Used For LASIK Surgery?

Under IRS guidelines, laser vision procedures (including LASIK eye surgery) are an eligible FSA expense. Utilizing this tax-free Flexible Spending money can not only reimburse you for eligible medical expenses such as LASIK, but it can also reduce your out of pocket costs by hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.

This is the time of year that many people choose to enroll in FSA programs, however it is important to understand that these enrollment periods are brief. Therefore, be sure that you contact your employer as soon as possible to learn if your company offers this beneficial flex spending program.

Once you learn if you are eligible, it is important to find out whether or not you are a good candidate for LASIK surgery before you set aside funds for your FSA. OCLI provides complimentary consultations to all patients, so schedule an appointment with us today to learn more about the costs and benefits of this helpful laser eye procedure. Before you know it, you too could be enjoying the clear, sharp vision that many post-LASIK patients experience every day.

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