Benefits Debit Cards: More Convenience for Everyone

debit cards

Linking tax-advantaged benefits accounts such as FSAs and HSAs to benefits debit cards is more convenient for everyone concerned. Employees are able to make eligible purchases without having to front the expense, file a claim, and wait for a reimbursement. Employers and TPAs usually do not have to manually process a claim due to the automated substantiation processes that govern most benefits debit cards. So, let’s learn more about how benefits debit cards offer more convenience for everyone.

Time-Savers for Employees

Online shopping continues to increase. Benefits debit cards let participants save time by shopping online as well as in person. They also avoid the time-consuming processes involved with submitting expense claims for reimbursement.

Time-Savers for Employers and TPAs

Tax-advantaged plans that do not come with a benefits debit card create considerably more work for administrators. Claims must be reviewed and evaluated manually to verify such things as:

  • Was the expense for an eligible product/service?
  • Was the purchase made at a qualified merchant?
  • Is enough information provided by the receipt to meet all IRS requirements?

What benefits accounts offer debit cards?

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs)

FSA participants can use their benefits debit card to pay for IRS-approved healthcare expenses. Some retailers, such as Walgreens and FSAStore.com, clearly identify FSA-approved items. Depending on the plan setup, these debit card purchases usually auto-substantiate, eliminating the need for employees to submit receipts.

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)

HSA participants can also use debit cards to pay for eligible expenses. Again, this eliminates the need for manual claim submission. Like FSA debit cards, HSA cards usually eliminate the need for employees to submit claims manually.

Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRAs)

Depending on the plan design, some HRA accounts can also utilize benefits debit cards. Cardholders can pay for pre-approved expenses rather than paying out of pocket and filing for reimbursement. As with other account-linked benefits debit cards, this can reduce the need for manual claims filing, which can be burdensome for employees and administrators alike.

Transit (Commuter) Accounts

As businesses return to the office, even in a hybrid arrangement, employees are facing transit (commuter) costs once again. In response, many employers are adding commuter benefits for the first time and/or including the convenience of benefits debit card access.

DataPath is an end-to-end card and payment processor for tax-advantaged and post-tax benefits accounts.

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