When you’ve been trying to conceive or having fertility issues, it seems like time can stand still. Now that we’re approaching the end of 2018 however, it may feel like time is, in fact, running out similar to Dorothy frantically watching the hourglass run out of sand. Whether it’s your flexible spending account that you must “use it or lose it” before December 31st, or the Open Enrollment Deadline of December 15th for individual and family health insurance plans; when it comes to navigating infertility benefits (or lack thereof), here’s quick end of the year guide to help offer some assistance (just short of clicking your ruby red slippers).
First Things First: Use your FSA Towards Fertility
The overwhelming majority of flexible spending accounts are “use it or lose it” type plans. At the start of 2018, you put in how much you wanted to contribute, tax-free, to your FSA. Throughout the year, you may (or may not have) used the funds on various medical needs. If you did not spend it all though, that means there is a good amount left in the account that may be used towards a fertility work-up or treatment if needed.
Overall, FSA reimbursement can be used to evaluate, diagnose or treat an illness, or symptoms of a disease. While infertility or trying to conceive issues can be complicated when it comes to an FSA reimbursement, there are several diagnostic procedures that would fall under covered services.
Ideally, it’s best to speak with your FSA contact and make an appointment with us before the end of the year to take the opportunity to learn more about your fertility health and get the expense in under the wire before 2019 begins.
Open-Enrollment: Limited Time and Lots of Questions
If you’re in New York, which is where Generation Next Fertility is located, we are one of the states that does not at this time have mandated fertility coverage. This means that between November 1st, 2018 and December 15th, those who need it must decide on an individual health insurance or Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage. The only other time you can change your insurance is if you have a “life-changing event” such as you got married or had a child. Your options for insurance coverage are:
Your employer/workplace: Your company will inform you about its specific open enrollment period. When you look at the plans, one thing to look at specifically or to ask are what the fertility benefits are and if you have out of network benefits. The out of network benefits may offer to reimburse a portion of what is spent should fertility or certain procedures or medications not be covered.
If you’re buying health insurance on your own such as Cigna Health, you have several options for purchasing a policy:
- By contacting the specific health insurance company you’re interested in
- You can go to Healthcare.gov to search your particular state health insurance
- Contact someone who specializes in and sells health insurance
Record Anything You’ve Spent on Fertility in 2018
As you look towards the future, make sure that if you’ve had any out of pocket costs this past year, you have receipts, invoices or some sort of documentation. This way, when it comes to tax time in April 2019, you can speak to your accountant on whether or not this can be filed under your medical expenses.
Dealing with potential infertility concerns can be stressful enough. Please don’t hesitate to call us before the year is out so we can help get you an appointment before the ball drops on New Year’s Eve. Generation Next Fertility wants to do all we can to make creating your next generation part of your 2019 resolution!