About the Health Saving Account (HSA)

A Health Savings Account (HSA) is a tax-advantaged account used in conjunction with an HSA-eligible high deductible health plan (HDHP) that eligible individuals may establish to pay for current and future qualified medical expenses for themselves, their spouse, and their qualifying dependents. The BU Health Savings Plan is an HSA-eligible HDHP. In connection with the BU Health Savings Plan, access is provided to an HSA administered by Fidelity Investments if you would like to make your own pre-tax payroll deductions, and/or you wish to receive the BU HSA contribution. You are, however, free to choose any HSA vendor for your own after-tax contributions or move money from your Fidelity-administered HSA to an HSA administered by another entity in accordance with IRS rules.

The legal and tax rules relating to HSAs can be complicated. A summary of those rules is contained in IRS Publication 969 “Health Savings Accounts and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans.” If you have an HSA, you should carefully review that publication. If you have legal, tax, or financial questions about HSAs, you should consult your own professional advisor at your own expense. ERISA does not apply to HSAs and the University is not a fiduciary of any HSA.

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You are eligible to open a Fidelity HSA if: You are NOT eligible to open a Fidelity HSA if:
You become covered under the BU Health Savings Plan, a high deductible health plan, and You are not covered under the BU Health Savings Plan.
You are not enrolled in Medicare and have not received medical benefits within the last three months through the Veteran’s Administration (VA), and You are enrolled in Medicare or have received medical benefits within the last three months through a Veteran’s Administration.
You are not claimed as a dependent on another person’s tax return. You are claimed as a dependent on another person’s tax return.
IMPORTANT: You may also not open an HSA while you are covered under another health plan that is not a qualifying HDHP.  For example, you cannot also be covered under a health care flexible spending arrangement (FSA) of your own or under an FSA of your spouse through his or her employer.  Also, you cannot be covered as a dependent of your spouse under the group health plan of your spouse’s employer if that group health plan is not a qualifying HDHP.

Health Savings Account Highlights

  • When you elect the BU Health Savings Plan, you may also elect to open and contribute to an HSA. If you do, the University will automatically deposit $500 if you are enrolled with employee only coverage, or $1,000 if you have coverage that includes any family members, as a contribution to your Fidelity-administered HSA account.*
  • You don’t need to use Fidelity for the HSA. However, if you want to automatically have the HSA contributions come from your paycheck, you will have to establish a Fidelity account on their website NetBenefits.
  • You may elect to contribute to your HSA, pre-tax, up to the annual limits for 2024:
      • $4,150 employee only and $8,300 if you have family coverage. These limits are reduced by any contributions by the University to your HSA, e.g., if the University contributed $500 to your HSA and you have employee only coverage under the BU Health Savings Plan, your remaining maximum HSA contribution for the remainder of the year would be $3,650 ($4,150-$500).
  • You are not required to contribute to the HSA to participate in the BU Health Savings Plan.
  • You must, however, open and contribute to a Fidelity HSA in order to receive the University contribution to that HSA.
  • You may also contribute after-tax funds by check and claim them as deductions on your income tax return.
  • If you are age 55 or older in 2024, you may make additional pre-tax “catch-up” contributions, up to $1,000 per year.
  • You may prospectively change your pre-tax salary reduction HSA contribution amounts on a semi-monthly basis.
  • You are always 100% vested in both the amount Boston University contributes to your account and in your HSA contributions.
  • You decide whether to save for qualified expenses you incur now or in the future; any funds you withdraw to pay for qualified medical expenses are tax-free.
  • You may request a debit card and special checkbook to provide you access to your HSA funds; and you may use these even if you terminate employment with Boston University or drop your membership in the BU Health Savings Plan. The debit card can be requested online at NetBenefits or requested by phone at 800-343-0860.

* The amount (if any) of University HSA contributions is subject to review and change by the University at any time.  The University reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to discontinue HSA contributions at any time.