Health Care FSA

Syracuse University offers benefits-eligible employees the opportunity to contribute pre-tax dollars to a Health Care Flexible Spending Account (FSA) administered by WageWorks.  If you elect a Health Care FSA, you can spend the funds on expenses for yourself, your spouse and your children, or other individuals that you claim as dependents on your tax return. Neither you nor your family members need to be enrolled in the Syracuse University health plan, or even enrolled in the same health plan.

Visit the WageWorks website or call WageWorks toll-free at 877.924.3967 (TTY: 866.353.8058) for more information.

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Benefit Design

The Health Care FSA offers tax savings on eligible health care expenses for you and your eligible dependents (as defined by the Internal Revenue Code and the cafeteria plan) that are not covered as eligible expenses under any other health plan. You have access to the full amount of your annual election immediately.

The maximum amount you can contribute to a Health Care FSA in 2020 is $2,750. In addition, you may roll over up to $500 of unused funds in your Health Care FSA. This is a great feature. It means that you are less likely to forfeit unused funds at year’s end, or be forced to “spend down” your account on non-essentials. And, you do not have to try to precisely predict out-of-pocket medical expenses a whole year in advance. The $500 rollover does not count toward the annual maximum contribution amount. You will still want to think carefully about how much you contribute to a Health Care FSA. While you can roll over up to $500 of unused funds, you will lose any amount over $500 not incurred by Dec. 31 if you don’t claim it by the filing deadline of Apr. 30 of the following plan year.

Important Note Regarding Domestic Partners: Expenses for your domestic partner and/or their children are not eligible for reimbursement under your Health Care FSA unless they qualify as your dependents for federal income tax purposes. Therefore, to prevent receiving an overpayment which may result in adverse tax consequences, you should not activate the automatic reimbursement feature if you cover a domestic partner.

Eligible Expenses

Services and products that are medically necessary to treat a specific condition are usually considered eligible health care expenses. Cosmetic or non-medical expenses are not eligible. Prescriptions are required for the reimbursement or purchase of over-the-counter medication such as aspirin, allergy and stomach medications, but certain over-the-counter items do not need a prescription. Some services may require a letter of medical necessity from your doctor. Only the portion of the cost not covered by other insurance is eligible for reimbursement.

The WageWorks website has a searchable database of eligible health care expenses.

Common Health Care Expenses

  • Prescriptions for almost any medical condition
  • Prescribed over-the-counter health care products like allergy medicine, antacid, antibiotics and aspirin
  • Copays and deductibles
  • Dental care, both preventive and restorative
  • Orthodontia, child and adult
  • Vision care, including exams, eyeglasses (including prescription sunglasses) and contact lenses
  • Laser vision correction
  • Physical therapy
  • Counseling and psychology
  • Chiropractic care, acupuncture and some other alternative treatments
  • Items that don’t require a prescription: band-aids, SPF-15 and above sunscreen, air-activated heat wraps, cooling headache pads, digital thermometers, first aid kits, contact lens solution, instant cold compresses, ankle brace and reading glasses.

Reimbursement Process

WageWorks offers Health Care FSA participants a variety of ways to manage their accounts and receive reimbursements, including an automatic reimbursement option. If you enable this feature, the copay or coinsurance you paid for a Syracuse University medical, prescription, dental or vision claim is forwarded from our claims administrators to WageWorks and you will be automatically reimbursed. If you choose this option, you do not have to save any receipts or complete any claim forms to receive reimbursement from your Health Care FSA for these expenses.

You may enroll in automatic reimbursement through MySlice when you first enroll as a new hire or during the annual Open Enrollment period. Should you wish to activate or waive this feature outside of the Open Enrollment period, please contact HR Shared Services to request assistance.

Filing a Claim

If you have not elected the automatic reimbursement option or have a health care expense that cannot be submitted through the automatic reimbursement option, there are three alternative methods you can use to submit your claims for reimbursement:

  • The EZ Receipts app on your mobile device—use this free app for Apple or Android devices to take a photo of your receipt, upload it and file your claim with a few swipes.
  • Submit an online claim—scan a copy of your receipt and submit your claim on the WageWorks website.
  • Mail or fax a paper claim [PDF] to WageWorks.

Submitting your claim electronically eliminates the need to save paper receipts. Set up direct deposit of your reimbursements with WageWorks to get your money even faster and avoid the hassle of taking a paper check to the bank.

Claim Filing Deadline: You will have until Apr. 30 of the following plan year to submit claims for expenses incurred during the plan year, which runs from Jan. 1 (or your enrollment date, if later) through Dec. 31. Should your participation in the FSA terminate during the calendar year when you have funds remaining in your account, you may choose to continue participation through COBRA by continuing to make contributions on an after-tax basis.  This will allow you to submit claims for services incurred after your last date worked. If you are not eligible for, or choose not to continue your FSA through COBRA, you will only be able to submit claims for expenses you incurred prior to your last date worked.


Every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained within this website is accurate. However, the benefits are governed by legal documents (which, in certain circumstances, may include insurance contracts). If there is any difference between the information in this website and the official documents, the official documents will control. As is the case with all of Syracuse University’s employee benefit plans, the University reserves the right to modify or terminate these benefits at any time.