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Personal Investing

Getting started in the right direction is tough when you’re not sure where to begin. That’s why we bring you knowledgeable people and several investment choices.

  • Health Savings Accounts

    It’s no secret that health care continues to get more complicated and more expensive. If you’re looking for more control over what you pay for health care and the services that you (or your family) actually use, a health savings account (HSA) might be a good place to direct your dollars. HSAs are used in combination with “high deductible health plans,”—heath insurance plans that carry a high deductible. One important benefit of an HSA is the tax break: you can make deposits with pre-tax dollars and any interest you earn is also tax-free. This can help your account grow quickly, but before opening an account you should check with a tax advisor.

    HSAs go hand-in-hand with high deductible health plans (HDHP) because they allow you to spend pre-tax dollars on qualified medical expenses that your insurance doesn’t cover.

    Here’s how it works: a HDHP generally has a lower monthly cost (premium) than traditional health insurance, but a higher deductible (money you pay before your health insurance policy kicks in). So you pay less for your insurance, but potentially more for your health care until you meet your deductible. To help meet those costs, many people with HDHPs direct the money they save in monthly premiums to a special bank account designed just for medical expenses—an HSA.

    But there are other benefits to opening an HSA, too.

    First off, unlike a flexible spending account (sometimes also called a cafeteria plan), all the money you set aside in an HSA is yours to keep. So anything you don’t spend this year isn’t lost. The money remains in your account year after year, where it can be invested, grow and then spent on future health care expenses.

    As long as you spend the money and any earnings on qualified medical expenses (as defined by the IRS), you won’t pay taxes on it.

    Is an HSA right for me?

    Eligibility

    You must have:

    • A high deductable health plan (HDHP)
    • A valid social security number
    • A primary U.S. residence

     

    You may not be:

    • Covered by any other type of health plan, including Medicare
    • Claimed on anyone’s tax return as a dependant (except your spouse)

    Tax features

    Contributions are made with pre-tax dollars; your account grows tax-free, too

    Contribution limits

    Each year the IRS sets new contribution limits. Below are the limits for 2016.

     

     

     

    Single Plan

    Family Plan

    Maximum contribution limit

    $3,350

    $6,750

    Minimum deductible

    $1,300

    $2,600

    Maximum
    Out-of-Pocket

    $6,550

    $13,100

    Catch-up contribution (55+)

    $1,000

    $1,000

    Fees

    Your HSA is free when you maintain a balance of $500. Otherwise, there is a modest $3 maintenance fee each statement period.

    Access

    You can pay for your medical expenses using a Visa® debit card, writing a check, or by making an electronic transfer or cash withdrawal

    Other considerations

    You can use this money for other kinds of expenses, but those withdrawals will be taxed

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  • Features

    Smart

    Pay less in taxes, save more for your actual healthcare costs

    No Fee

    When you meet the minimum balance

    Flexible

    No “use it or lose it” penalty

    Simple

    Access funds with a Visa® debit card, checks or cash withdrawals

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