Dependent Day Care Flexible Spending Account (DCFSA)

The Dependent Day Care FSA* is administered through PayFlex in order to pay for eligible child and adult care expenses while you work; this includes day care, before and after school care, nursery school, preschool and summer day camp. If you are married, your spouse must also work, be a full-time student or be disabled. $5,000 is the maximum election for 2023. 

Grace Period and Reimbursement Deadline Extensions:

Due to recent Internal Revenue Service guidance in response to the end of the COVID-19 National Emergency, the deadline for submitting claims incurred during the 2022 plan year for reimbursement has been extended. 

  • The deadline to submit reimbursements to PayFlexfor claims incurred in 2022 has been extended from April 30, 2023  to November 7, 2023.
  • To submit claims, please follow these instructions.

Eligible dependents under the DCFSA include:

  • Children under the age of 13 whom you claim as tax dependents (if you are divorced or separated, you may be able to claim reimbursement for childcare expenses you pay even if you cannot claim the child as an exemption).
  • Spouse who is physically or mentally incapable of self-care and who resides with you for more than half the year.
  • Other dependent(s) that are physically or mentally incapable of self-care, whom you can claim as a dependent on your tax return, and who resides with you for more than half the year.


The DCFSA is elected using the GW Benefits Enrollment System as a new benefits-eligible employee within 30 calendar days from your date of hire, during Open Enrollment, or due to a Qualified Life Event.

File a claim

  • You can be reimbursed for 2022 DCFSA expenses incurred from January 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022. 
  • Submit claims directly to Payflex online or with a paper claim form.
  • Attach the appropriate documentation including an explanation of benefits (EOB), receipt or invoice.
  • Documentation must include: provider or full name of product, patient name, amount and date(s) of service.
  • Cancelled checks, credit card receipt or balance due statement will not be accepted in lieu of an itemized bill or receipt.
  • Statements showing only a previous balance are not acceptable documentation.

For a general summary of the FSAs, please review GW's Flexible Accounts Summary Plan Description (PDF).


*Dependent day care flexible spending account plans (DCFSA) are subject to Internal Revenue Code nondiscrimination requirements. Under the Code, DCFSAs must not discriminate in favor of highly paid and key employees with respect to plan eligibility, pre-tax contributions or benefits. Based on the result of the annual testing, the annual maximums of the highly compensated employees may be reduced to ensure the plan remains equitable.