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Don’t Overlook HSA Beneficiary Designations

A little over a year ago, my wife and I elected to have our family’s health insurance be provided by her employer through a “high deductible health plan,” as defined in Section 223(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code.  That plan, in turn, is paired with a Health Savings Account (HSA). An HSA is usually funded with pre-tax dollars, just as is the case with a traditional IRA or qualified retirement plan.  With respect to my wife’s HSA, this applies to whatever she contributes, as well as to whatever her employer contributes.  Individuals other than my wife can also contribute, just not in a tax-favored manner.  Whatever is contributed, along with anything it may earn, avoids taxation so long as it either remains in the account or is used to pay certain “qualified medical expenses” as defined by law.