Hurry – 2010 is Almost Here! Max Out Your Health Benefits before Year End.

It’s hard to believe, but 2009 is quickly drawing to a close.  With only a few weeks left, make sure that you get the most out of your health benefits before year end.  Chances are you have already satisfied your health insurance policy’s deductible for this year.  If so, now is the perfect time to go to the doctor for any foreseeable appointments that you may need.  Have you gotten your yearly physical?  Have you been to the eye doctor this year?  If not, now is the time to go.  If you wait until January, you’ll have to start paying a new yearly deductible and those same appointments will cost you more than they will now.

Do you have a flexible spending account through your work?  If so, you must make sure to spend every penny on qualified medical and eye expenses by year-end or you will lose the money in your account.  First, determine how much money is left in your flexible spending account.  Do you have any receipts for which you can be reimbursed the cost of doctor’s visits, prescriptions or other qualified expenses?  If so, now is the time to submit them. You might be surprised – a lot of your purchases at grocery stores, drug stores and discount stores qualify.  Make sure to look closely at your receipts to see if they identify health-related or “flex” items.

If after reviewing your receipts, you determine that you’ll still have money left in your flexible spending account, you must spend it or you lose it!  Buy extra contact lenses and solution that you know you’ll need and use.  Go pick out a new pair of glasses (but first see your ophthalmologist or optometrist to make sure you have an up-to-date prescription).  Make sure to save your receipts and submit them to your benefits administrator.

Now that 2009 is almost over, take this opportunity to maximize your health benefits, including your health insurance and flexible spending account.  If you’ve satisfied your 2009 health insurance deductible, schedule any doctors’ appointments that you need before year-end.  Make sure you’ve depleted your flexible spending account with qualified purchases so that you don’t lose your hard-earned money.  Take advantage and make sure to max out your health benefits before it’s too late!


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