Author Topic: HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year  (Read 770 times)

Rollin

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HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year
« on: August 26, 2017, 05:44:50 PM »
I found a few medical expenses from 2016 that I didn't run through my HSA in 2016 (i.e., I didn't ask for a distribution/reimbursement). Does anyone know if I can get reimbursed for an expense in 2017 for a previous year? I read the IRS publication on HSA's and saw nothing that answered this question.

Paul der Krake

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Re: HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2017, 05:52:19 PM »
Yes- it's even a strategy that's very common among the FIRE crowd. Pay your eligible expenses "cash", hold on to your receipts, and reimburse yourself tax-free out the HSA when fiscally convenient.

Rollin

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Re: HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2017, 06:46:13 PM »
Thank you Paul. Before FIRE I had a significant amount in the HSA for tax purposes (and a big employer contribution), as I maxed out everything to reduce taxes the last year. However, with one kid having knee surgery I depleted the HSA. Now, I'd like to do what you suggest and fund the amount I've expended. Again though, I found a few qualified expenses from last year that I'd like to submit.

Do you or anyone know how many years I can go back? I didn't have an HSA in 2015 and with three children there were some expenses.

Paul der Krake

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Re: HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2017, 07:53:57 PM »
See Q&A 39 on this IRS bulletin:
https://www.irs.gov/irb/2004-33_IRB/ar08.html

You can go back as far as the HSA dates. So to answer your question, no, you cannot reimburse yourself for the kids' expenses.


Rollin

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Re: HSA distributions for med expenses from previous year
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2017, 08:21:15 PM »
Thank you Paul - that's a very clear "no." I established the HSA for 2016, so only 2016 qualified expenses and beyond.