Are you aware that the most basic Health Savings Accounts require you to fax or mail a request for withdrawal? That is why having a debit card would come in handy if you plan to withdraw money from your HSA on a regular basis. And, remember, if you withdraw money from your HSA to pay for non-qualified expenses before you enroll in Medicare, you will have to pay taxes on the withdrawal along with a 20-percent penalty.
To make it even more convenient for you, some HSA administrators now offer Health Savings Accounts with a credit card. Having a credit card is really a big help when you are just starting an HSA as long as you can manage debt without getting in over your head. In the event that you incur a large medical bill before your HSA balance has had a chance to grow, you can use the credit card to pay for that medical expense and claim a tax deduction for the payment.
To attract new customers, certain administrators offer additional services and perks. For example, Sterling HSA reviews the EOB (Explanation of Benefits) that hospitals and doctors give you for errors and accuracy. After reviewing that, Sterling HSA will be the one who will pay for the bill from your HSA. You’d be surprised how common errors are, so you never want to pay a bill without checking for costly mistakes.
Some administrators go out of their way to make it convenient for you to use your HSA. For instance, DataPath Administrative Services (DPAS) offers members a benefit called “The Claims Vault.” That is an online electronic HSA claims repository where you can indefinitely store receipts and then quickly access them whenever you want. That’s important because health care expenses you incur can be reimbursed decades later. That’s a strategy I personally like because it allows my HSA to grow with tax-free interest and I’m grooming mine to take care of me in retirement. On our HSA Administrator page, we have a list of preferred banks and trustees that you can use. Remember to ask about fees for all of these services and weigh the convenience against any service fees.
I have been in the health insurance business for over 12 years. I’m passionate about Health Savings Accounts and enjoy blogging about them. I am also a husband and father of 2 beautiful children.