FAQs about Flexible Spending Accounts
For most plans, unused amounts are generally forfeited at the end of the plan year. Some FSAs may include an optional carryover provision or grace period. See your employer for details specific to your plan.
Log in to My Alerus, locate your plan under Health & Benefits and then click Manage My Account. For help logging in, refer to Benefits Account Access.
Please contact your employer to learn when you are eligible to change your monthly parking or transit elections.
Explanation of Benefits (EOB) statements received from your insurance carrier must be submitted for reimbursement requests from your HRA benefit. EOB statements can be submitted online by accessing your account through My Alerus, or through the Alerus Benefits mobile app.
The final service date and final filing date for your Flexible Spending Account will change when you terminate employment. Log in to My Alerus, locate your plan under Health & Benefits and then click Manage My Account. On the Home tab, review final service date and final filing date under Accounts.
A letter of medical necessity (LMN) is a letter written by your doctor that verifies the services or items you purchase for the diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of a disease or medical condition. This letter must be updated annually and must be dated prior to incurring services or purchasing items. Refer to Eligible Expenses.
The letter should include the following:
- The type of treatment or item purchased
- The specific medical condition/need requiring the treatment/expense
- The letter must be dated prior to incurring the services or purchasing items
- Letters of Medical Necessity are good for one year. You will need an updated letter each year if the necessity expands over a year.*
*Letters from chiropractors only qualify if they are able to diagnose and treat the medical condition.
Final service date is the last day you can spend money on qualified health care items or services from your health or limited purpose flexible spending account. The final filing date is the last day you can file for reimbursement for those qualified health care items or services.
For example, Jordan’s final service date is 12.31.22 and the final filing date is 03.31.23. Jordan went to the eye doctor on 12.31.22 but received the bill on 01.15.23. Jordan can request reimbursement through My Alerus or the Alerus Benefits mobile app from her 2022 FSA plan year but cannot use the Alerus Health Benefits debit card as those funds will always pull from the current year (2023 in this example). After 03.31.23 Jordan can no longer request reimbursement for expenses that occurred in 2022.
To check your specific final service date and final filing date, log in to My Alerus, locate your plan under Health & Benefits and then click Manage My Account. Review final service date and final filing date under Accounts.
Alerus is required to substantiate each claim by reviewing receipts, explanation of benefits, and/or claim forms to ensure expenses meet applicable regulations. Documentation should be itemized to show:
- Date of service
- Provider of service
- Service being claimed
- Amount you are responsible for paying
If I swipe my debit card at a dental office will the funds come from my health savings account or my limited purpose flexible spending account first?
The card will take available funds from the purpose flexible spending account first because it is a covered limited purpose expense.
What happens if I don’t have enough funds in my limited purpose flexible spending account to cover an eligible expense?
The debit card will take what funds are available from the limited purpose flexible spending account and take the remaining balance (if any) from your health savings account if available.
What happens if I swipe my card for a non-eligible limited purpose expense, and I don’t have funds left in my limited purpose flexible spending account?
The card will recognize that the swipe is for a non-eligible expense and take the money from your health savings account if available.
What happens if I swipe my card for an eligible FSA expense, but I want it to come from my health savings account?
The debit card will take available funds from your eligible FSA benefit first if the provider/merchant has the item/service on their debit card machine coded correctly. Keep in mind the date of service you are swiping your card for. If your expense is not eligible for the FSA benefit or was rendered in a prior plan year (and funds are exhausted) you would need to repay the ineligible swipe on your FSA benefit and then, if you choose, make a distribution from your health savings account for the expense amount.
This could have happened because your provider/merchant has the item/service or their debit/credit card machine coded differently. You can submit the eligible expense for reimbursement from your Flexible Spending Account. If you choose to pay back the funds to your health savings account you can do so by sending a check with a completed HSA Excess Distribution Request.