When you enroll in the HDHP, you have the opportunity to open an HSA; beginning in calendar year 2017, the HSA will be automatically opened for you. The HSA is essentially a bank account with Optum Bank that allows you to save and pay for eligible health care expenses. The HSA is a great way to build up dollars to pay for your health care expenses today — or in the future.
Understanding the HSA option
HSAs function very similarly to a bank account but are dedicated to health care expenses. If you do not use all of the money, your account rolls over from year to year. You choose to "spend" or "save" these dollars to pay for your eligible medical, dental, prescription, or vision expenses. Similar to a 403(b), you can contribute to your HSA on a pre-tax basis up to IRS limits.
In 2017, you may contribute up to $3,400 ($3,350 in 2016) for individual coverage, or $4,400 ($4,350 in 2016) if age 55 or older; and $6,750 (same as 2016) for family coverage, or $7,750 (same as 2016) if age 55 or older, into the HSA.
You decide how to use your HSA funds. Click for more:
This includes hospital services, prescriptions, dental, vision, and other eligible health care expenses. Note: federal law does not allow you to be reimbursed for expenses through an HSA for non-tax-qualified dependents. If you enroll a domestic partner in the HDHP, he/she must be a tax-qualified dependent in order to have his/her expenses reimbursed through an HSA. We suggest that you seek guidance from your personal tax advisor to confirm the eligibility of any dependents for whom you plan to take HSA distributions.
You can use the HSA to build additional income for health care expenses in future years — or retirement.
Even if you leave NYU, the funds in your HSA (both your contributions and any contributions from NYU) are yours to use for eligible health care expenses. Beginning at age 65, you can use your HSA funds for medical expenses not covered by Medicare.