Flexible Spending Accounts

Grace Period and Reimbursement Deadline Extensions

Due to IRS guidance in response to COVID-19, the university is adding flexibility to 2021 FSAs to allow more time to incur eligible expenses and submit reimbursements. Please read below for more information.

Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow you to make an annual election to set aside money from your paycheck on a pre-tax basis that can be used to pay for eligible out-of-pocket expenses. The funds must be used within the calendar year, or they are forfeited. 

GW offers two types of FSAs, administered through PayFlex:

  • Health Care FSA (HCFSA) - may be used to pay for eligible out-of-pocket health care expenses (including medical, dental, vision, hearing and prescription drug expenses) for you, your spouse and your eligible tax dependents.
  • Dependent Day Care FSA (DCFSA) - may be used to pay for eligible child and adult care expenses while you and your spouse work; this includes day care, before and after school care, nursery school, preschool and summer day camp.  If an elderly parent lives with a participant and relies on that person for at least 50 percent of their support, then the DCFSA may be used for that elderly parent’s day care expenses.

Grace Period and Reimbursement Deadline Extensions:

Due to recent Internal Revenue Service guidance in response to COVID-19, the university is adding flexibility for 2021 Flexible Spending Accounts to allow more time for you to incur eligible expenses and submit reimbursements:

  • The grace period to use your 2021 HCFSA and DCFSA funds is being extended from March 15, 2022 to December 31, 2022. The deadline to submit reimbursements to PayFlex is also extended from April 30, 2022 to April 30, 2023.
  • To submit claims, please follow these instructions.

Eligibility and Enrollment

You may elect one or both FSAs as a new benefits-eligible employee, during Open Enrollment or following a Qualified Life Event. FSA elections are made through the online GW Benefits Enrollment System.

Reminder: Health Savings Account (HSA) participants cannot participate in the HCFSA. However, if you are enrolled in the GW Health Savings Plan (HSP), and are not eligible for the HSA, you may be eligible to participate in the HCFSA.

Filing Claims

  • 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.