Save money for eligible expenses with an FSA

Flexible Spending Accounts


COVID-19 CARES Act Communication:


To help UVA employees maximize their money for medical, pharmacy, dental, vision, and dependent care expenses, the University has two options: Health care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts (DCA FSAs). The Health care FSA can be used to pay medical, pharmacy, dental and vision expenses. The Dependent Care Account FSA can be used to pay dependent care expenses. UVA FSA's including Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts, are managed by Chard Snyder.

FSAs enable you to pay for certain expenses on a pre-tax basis, making your money go farther. For example, setting aside $5,000 in a Dependent Daycare Reimbursement account enables you to spend the whole $5,000 on daycare. Receiving the $5,000 in pay would leave roughly $3,500 after taxes for daycare expenses. 

Eligibility Requirements

Some eligibility requirements are unique to each FSA; others apply to most, if not all, of the accounts.

  • Employment Status

    In general, to be eligible for FSAs (including Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts), you must be a full- or part-time UVA employee, and regularly scheduled to work at least 20 hours/week. To be eligible for FSAs, you must be:

    • Faculty
    • Classified Staff
    • Medical Center Team Member
    • Postdoctoral Research Associate
    • Senior Professional Research Staff
    • University Staff
    • Housestaff

    Mandatory Direct Deposit: For all paper claims, direct deposit is required. If you are a new enrollee, you must provide direct information on your personal Chard Snyder account for reimbursement of all non-Benny Card transactions. 

  • Health Plan Type

    UVA offers two types of FSA: full and limited. Your UVA Health Plan option determines which type of FSA you are eligible for.

    • Choice or Value Health participants may enroll in the full FSA, which can be used for eligible medical, dental, and vision expenses.
    • Basic Health participants may enroll in the limited FSA, which can be used for eligible dental and vision expenses. They can also enroll in a Health Savings Account, which can be used for eligible medical, dental, and vision expenses.
  • Dependent Criteria

    To be eligible for a Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account, your dependents must meet one of the following criteria:

    • Are under age 13 at the time of service and are claimed as dependents on your taxes.
    • Are unable to care for themselves, such as adult children with disabilities or elders. (These dependents are eligible regardless of age.)

    All dependents must live with you for more than half the year for you in order to use funds from a Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account for their care.

    Note: A Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account may be more beneficial, in terms of a tax benefit, than the federal dependent care tax credit for most individuals with an adjusted gross income > $25,000. Consult a tax professional for an assessment of your personal situation.

Contribution Information

Money contributed to UVA FSAs must be used during that year, as funds do not roll over. FSAs and DCAs do have grace periods to spend the money beyond year’s end if you are enrolled in the FSA or DCA program on December 31 of the plan year. You may continue to spend unused funds until March 15*. The deadline to submit claims is April 30. Since the money is use-or-lose, make sure you put aside an amount that will be reasonable for you to spend within the allotted time.

Keep in mind that contributions are for the calendar year, regardless of when you are hired. For example, consider an employee who is hired in October and signs up for an FSA. If the person chooses to contribute $500 for the remainder of that year, all $500 would need to be spent before the end of the grace period on March 15 of the following year.

Changes to your FSA and DCA contributions can only be made during the open enrollment period each October or after a qualified life event like a loss of dependent eligibility or a birth or adoption. Review the FSA and DCA Qualified Life Events resource document for a list of life events and required documentation needed to request a change. Qualified life event change requests along with appropriate documentation must be submitted within 30 days of the life event and must be consistent with the life event. Coverage changes will be effective the first of the month following receipt of the application and documentation at UVA HR if received within 30 days of the qualified life event. If you elect to stop your FSA or DCA account, reimbursement will only be available for dates of service that occur on or prior to the end of the month in which you stop your account contributions. 

*Note: If you sign up for Basic Health with a Health Savings Account (HSA) during Annual Enrollment after having a full FSA previously, your FSA balance needs to be $0.00 by December 31, regardless of the grace period, for your HSA to be open at the beginning of the next year. Visit the Basic Health page for more information.

  • FSAs (for health, dental, and vision expenses)

    For both limited and full FSAs, the following annual contribution information is the same:

    Minimum: $120

    Maximum: $2,500

  • Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts

    The following are the annual contribution limits:

    Minimum: $120

    Maximum: $5,000 (household limit)

    When choosing how much to contribute, try to anticipate dependent eligibility changes. For example, if your child will be turning 13 mid-year, plan your contributions accordingly so you don’t over-contribute for a full year of care.

  • Dependent Daycare Accounts -Life Changes (COVID-19)

    • If the daycare closes or the summer camp in which your dependent was enrolled is cancelled or starts late, this is as a qualified life event (QLE). Email a letter to askhr from the daycare center or camp with this information and let us know if you’d like to stop or decrease your Dependent Daycare Account (DCA) on the first of the month following receipt of the letter. If you elect to decrease your contributions, let us know the total annual amount you’d like to contribute to your DCA. This amount can’t be less than the amount you’ve already contributed.
    • If you are removing your child from a center or disenrolling them from summer camp for their safety due to COVID-19, this is a qualified life event (QLE). Write a letter explaining why you removed your child and the date they were removed. Email the letter to askhr and let us know if you’d like to stop or decrease your Dependent Daycare Account (DCA) on the first of the month following receipt of the letter. If you elect to decrease your contributions, let us know the total annual amount you’d like to contribute to your DCA. This amount can’t be less than the amount you’ve already contributed.
    • If you are changing your worksite from the office to home (telecommuting) or vice versa, this is a qualified life event (QLE). Write a letter explaining your change in worksite and the date of its occurrence. Email the letter to askhr and let us know if you’d like to increase or decrease your Dependent Daycare Account (DCA) on the first of the month following receipt of the letter. Let us know the total annual amount you’d like  to contribute to your DCA. This amount can’t be less than the amount you’ve already contributed. With this QLE, you cannot stop or start your DCA.
    • No refunds can be provided for funds already contributed to your DCA.
    • If you elect to stop your DCA, you will not be able to restart it for the remainder of 2020. The money you’ve accumulated in your account can be used to pay daycare expenses that occurred prior to the termination of your account which is the last day of the month in which you submit your request.                
    • If you elect to decrease or increase your contributions to your DCA, you will be able to use the money you accumulate in your account in 2020 for daycare expenses that occur through the grace period which ends 3/15/21.

When are funds available to spend?

When you may spend money from these accounts varies by account type.

  • FSAs (for health, dental, and vision expenses)

    For FSAs, the full contribution amount you choose for the year is available after your first paycheck of 2020. The flexibility to spend planned FSA contributions before they accrue can be helpful.

    For example, if you choose to put $500 in a limited health care FSA for the year, you would be able to use that full $500 for eligible dental and vision expenses after the first paycheck of the year. Payroll deductions for the FSA would continue through the remainder of the year.

    FSAs opened during the year for new hires and qualified life events are effective the first of the month after the enrollment is processed. The full contribution amount you choose for the remainder of the year is available after your first benefits-deduction paycheck of the month in which coverage is effective. 

     

     

  • Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts

    Funds are available after they have been deposited in your account by payroll deductions each paycheck. It takes a few bank days after payday for payroll-deducted funds to show in your account.

Can I have an FSA with Basic Health?

Basic Health participants may have a limited FSA for eligible dental and vision expenses. For medical services and prescription costs, you must use HSA funds. Basic Health participants may not have a full health care FSA. Chard Snyder also administers UVA’s FSAs, so you can use the information above to login to see your FSA information as well as HSA details.

For FSAs, the full contribution amount you choose for the year is available as soon as the account is open. For example, if you choose to put $500 in a limited health care FSA for the year, you would be able to use that full $500 for eligible dental and vision expenses after the first paycheck of the year. Payroll deductions for the FSA would continue through the remainder of the year.

 

How do I use my FSA and/or Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account?

UVA FSAs and Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Accounts are managed by Chard Snyder. After contributions are in your account, there are several ways to use those funds for eligible expenses:

  • Use your prepaid benefits card, the Benny Card, at the time of purchase for eligible expenses. See below for more information about the Benny Card.
  • Submit claims from your accounts online through Chard Snyder’s website.
  • Submit a paper claim form by fax, mail, or email.

Always remember to keep receipts for your records and to illustrate the funds were used properly - in the event of an IRS inquiry.

  • Register at www.Chard-Snyder.com

    The first time you use Chard Snyder to access your FSA or Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account information, you will need to register.

    • Go to www.chard-snyder.com and click on “Login.” Under “Employees,” click on “Access your FSA, HRA, HSA Advantage, TRP accounts.”
    • Under “New User?” click on “Create your new username and password.”
    • Follow the prompts to create your username and password. You must provide your social security number or Employee ID (found on your UVA ID card), so have that information handy.
    • Begin using the Chard Snyder website to access your information.
  • Check your account balance, view transactions, and file claims

    To access your account information, and tools for spending FSA and/or Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account funds, follow these steps:

    • Go to www.chard-snyder.com and click on “Login.” Under “Employees,” click on “Access your FSA, HRA, HSA Advantage, TRP accounts.”
    • Enter your login credentials.
    • Use buttons on the home screen or other pages you can navigate to from there to manage your account.
  • Use your Benny card

    • When you open an FSA and/or a Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account, you will receive your prepaid benefits card, the Benny Card, in the mail to your home address. If you have had an account managed by Chard Snyder previously while working at UVA, you will reuse the same Benny Card, even when changing your account type. Benny Cards are reused from year to year.
    • The HSA Overview video gives a brief overview of how the Benny Card works.
    • Before using your Benny Card, you must activate it following the included instructions.
    • Use the card to pay for eligible expenses. Benny Cards are smart cards, meaning they will only work for allowable expenses. If you have more than one account, such as an FSA and a Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account, the Benny Card is usually smart enough to pull from the appropriate account.
    • To ensure funds have been used from the correct account, always confirm transactions by logging into the Chard Snyder portal.
    • Keep your receipts for your records and to illustrate the funds were used properly - in the event of an IRS inquiry.
  • Eligible Expenses

    An eligible expense is any healthcare expense approved by the IRS for reimbursement through an FSA. Reimbursements are only issued for eligible expenses incurred by the employee, their spouse or their eligible dependents. Expenses that occur before the beginning of the FSA plan year are not eligible.

    Flexible Spending Account Eligible Expenses click here. 


    The Limited FSA allows dental, vision and preventative care expenses to be paid for on a tax-free basis. The expenses are limited so that an employee can be enrolled in a Health Savings Account at the same time. Reimbursements are only issued for eligible expenses incurred by the employee, their spouse or their eligible dependents. Expenses that occur before the beginning of the FSA plan year are not eligible.

    Limited Flexible Spent Account Eligible Expenses click here.


    The Dependent Daycare FSA allows certain out-of-pocket daycare costs to be paid on a pre-tax basis. Services must be provided while the employee and their spouse are at work, looking for work or attending classes as a full-time student. Expenses that occur before the beginning of the FSA plan year are not eligible.

    Dependent Daycare FSA Eligible Expenses click here. 

     

    Find out more about what’s eligible and not eligible under your plan.

Leave-Related Changes

You can only contribute to a health care FSA during unpaid leave, not to a dependent care FSA

If you want to receive reimbursements during unpaid leave, you must make after-tax contributions to your account; reimbursement is based on the total amount you elect for the year and will be paid on request

If you did not cancel or request a change in participation before taking leave and you return in the same year, you will pay more monthly or biweekly to reach your annual contribution amount

What Happens When I Leave UVA?

If you are enrolled in either the FSA or the Dependent Daycare Reimbursement Account, you have the following options when you terminate employment:

  • Deduct your regular monthly contribution from your last paycheck and continue participation until the end of the month in which you terminate employment (this option happens automatically). Reimbursement will only be available for dates of service that occur on or prior to the end of the month in which you terminate employment. 
  • Continue participation until the end of the plan year as a COBRA participant

If you choose to continue with COBRA:

  • You will be responsible for paying your current election, an account administrative fee, and the COBRA administrative fee of 2% on a monthly basis.
  • This monthly payment will be due on or before the first of each month through the end of the current plan year.
  • Contact Chard Snyder to enroll in COBRA, at 888.302.9805

Contact the HR Solution Center at 434.243.3344 for more information about each of these options.