Benefits Blog

Filing Your 2017 Tax Return? Here are our HSA tips and tricks.

Posted by Lindsay Barnard on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 @ 05:42 PM

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Tax season is here! As we get closer to the deadline for filing (in 2018, it’s April 17 instead of the traditional April 15), we wanted to share three tips about Health Savings Accounts you’ll need to know before you file your return, along with a suggestion for using your refund.

  1. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE FORMS YOU NEED TO FILE YOUR RETURN

When filing your taxes, there are two forms you will need to report your HSA transactions from the last year: Forms 1099-SA and 5498-SA. If you are a 24HourFlex participant, both of these forms are available in your Consumer Portal under the “Statements & Notifications” tab.

Form 1099-SA shows all of the distributions you’ve taken from your HSA in the last tax year. A distribution is any amount you withdrew from your HSA to pay for expenses during the year. If you did not have any distribution activity from your HSA(s) this year, then you will not receive a 1099-SA.  If you have more than one HSA account, then you will have more than one 1099-SA.  In the event of multiple 1099-SAs (multiple HSA accounts), you will add the figures together.

To report distributions from an HSA, you must file this form. The custodian of your HSA is required to file and send this form to you. The form essentially notifies the IRS that money has left your HSA account. Because the government will also want to be sure you’ve spent any money you’ve withdrawn from your account on qualified medical expenses, this is the form where you will view whether or not you’ve held up your end up the HSA bargain with the government, so to speak.

You will also need to file Form 5498-SA, which shows all of the contributions to your HSA in the last tax year.

The 5498-SA form shows the total of all HSA contributions that are attributed to a tax year. A contribution is any amount of money deposited into your HSA during the year. If you make any additional contributions to a previous tax year after the original 5498-SA is generated and before the tax filing deadline, a revised 5498-SA will be issued for you.

Remember! HSA contributions and distributions are non-taxable—unless you withdraw money to pay for something that is not a qualified medical expense. If you used your HSA to pay for a non-eligible expense, you will have to pay an additional tax of 20 percent on the taxable portion of your distribution. You will need to calculate this tax amount and report the taxable amount on the “other income” line of your tax return, writing “HSA” beside it.

Wondering if something is or isn’t eligible? Check out our eligibility list here!

  1. MAKE ADDITIONAL CONTRIBUTIONS BY EARLY APRIL

If you did not contribute the maximum amount for the 2017 tax year ($3,450 for Individuals and $6,900 for Families), you actually have some time to make additional tax-free contributions to your HSA that count toward the prior year!

Even though you have until the tax deadline to do this, it’s recommended that you make any final contributions by early April to allow time for changes to process in your account and still ensure that you file your return on time.

If you are a 24HourFlex participant, you can make additional contributions to your HSA in your Consumer Portal or using the 24HourFlex Mobile App. Simply select “2017” as the tax year, if you are looking to apply the amount to the previous year.

  1. MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR REFUND

Who doesn’t get excited about tax refunds? But before you decide to spend your refund on a vacation or your next remodel project, have you thought about how can you invest your money to go further and help you tackle the rising cost of healthcare?

One option is to direct-deposit your refund into your HSA.

The average tax return last year was $3,120. By directing your refund to deposit directly into your HSA account, you’ll be ahead of the game for saving for medical expenses in 2018—or for healthcare expenses during retirement.

While this may not be the most exciting use of your tax refund, it may be among the wisest, especially when planning for retirement, as retirees who take money out of an IRA or 401(k) to pay for medical expenses will be taxed on these withdrawals. When they pay medical bills from an HSA, they will never be taxed. E-filing and selecting the direct deposit option is also the quickest way to get your return. Ninety percent of returns that are filed this way are received within a few weeks, while mailing in a paper return can require a six- to eight-week wait.

Americans have until April 17, 2018, to file their 2017 tax returns—this year, we get two extra days because April 15 falls on a weekend and April 16 is Emancipation Day, a legal holiday recognized in Washington, D.C.

Interested in learning more about how an HSA could benefit you and your company?
Click here to get in touch with a member of our team.

Topics: Health Savings Accounts, taxes, tax return, third party administrator, TPA, HSA, brokers, savings, Healthcare, Benefit Administration, HDHP, Health Care, Benefits Information, Compliance

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