Weekly HSA News – July 11, 2022

News from Washington
Schumer Making Last-Ditch Bid to Pass Reconciliation Bill This Summer
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) is making a last-ditch effort to pass a budget reconciliation bill during the July and early August work period. Schumer and centrist Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) have made progress on proposals to lower the cost of prescription drugs, extend Medicare’s solvency and raise taxes on some high-income earners. But several major issues remain unresolved.   Read More
Democratic Drug Pricing Bill Removes Insulin Cost Cap Amid Bipartisan Push
Senate Democrats’ latest bill to lower prescription drug prices removes a provision to cap patients’ insulin costs at $35 per month, legislation that comes amid a push for a separate bipartisan bill on insulin. The provision is part of a bipartisan bill from Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Susan Collins (R-ME), which could get a vote in the Senate this month but needs the support of at least 10 Republican Senators.   Read More
Democrats Want to Tax High Earners to Protect Medicare Solvency
Senate Democrats want to boost taxes on some high earners and use the money to extend the solvency of Medicare, the latest step in the party’s election-year attempt to craft a scaled-back version of the economic package that collapsed last year. Democrats expect to submit legislative language on their Medicare plan to the Senate’s parliamentarian in the next few days.   Read More
HSA Compliance Corner
How Does the Supreme Court’s Dobbs Decision Affect HSA Reimbursement?
The recent Supreme Court “Dobbs” decision affects HSA owners because tax-free distributions are limited to qualified expenses legally available where purchased. This term doesn’t usually come into play when an account owner purchases most health care items. But it becomes relevant when an owner purchases things like medicinal marijuana, which is now legal in many states but not at the federal level.   Read More
Tax Considerations on Abortion-Related Travel Benefits
Subject to the terms of the plan, employees generally will be able to use contributions made to their health FSA, HRA, and HSA to cover abortion-related travel that qualifies as medical care under the Internal Revenue Code. But employers should be aware of any applicable state tax requirements. Where abortions are illegal, it may be that plan coverage results in the benefit being taxed.   Read More
HSAs & Retirement
Seniors Badly Misjudge Key Retirement Risks
Seniors place too much emphasis on some retirement risks and not enough on others, according to a new research brief. The brief finds that retirees do not have an accurate understanding of their true retirement risks, and there’s a large disconnect between how actual and perceived risks are ranked. In short, retirees underestimate how long they will live and their health costs.   Read More
Maximizing Your HSA
HSA Limits Increase for 2023, but What about Their Spending Power?
In May, the Internal Revenue Service delivered the new inflation-adjusted limits for HSA contributions. The figures took their largest jump ever. The higher numbers don’t mean that the average HSA owner is better off in 2023 – or in later years. But as inflation increases prices, the tax benefits that HSAs deliver (25% to 35% discounts on most qualified services) are more important than ever.   Read More
Consumer-Driven Health Care
Surprise Medical Bills Have Been Banned Since January. 1 in 5 Americans Say They or Their Family Have Gotten an Unexpected Charge Anyway
One in 5 U.S. adults say they have received an unexpected medical bill this year, according to a new survey — even after federal efforts to combat it. The federal ban on surprise medical billing went into effect January 1. Hospitals and health insurers are now required to publicly post their rates, yet the new survey shows many Americans are still in the dark.   Read More
Gov. Newsom Announces California Will Produce Its Own ‘Low Cost’ Insulin
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) announced that his state will be producing its own “low cost” insulin. Newsom said that the state budget he recently signed includes $100 million for California to “contract and make [its] own insulin at a cheaper price.” He said $50 million will go to the development of the low cost insulin, and the additional $50 million will go toward a California-based manufacturing facility for the drug.   Read More