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Home > Benefits > Tax Saver Benefit > TSB Questions & Answers

TSB Questions and Answers

General Questions

What is the IU Tax Saver Benefit (TSB) Plan?

The TSB plan is an IU-sponsored benefit that allows you to use pre-tax salary to pay for certain health expenses that are not covered by insurance or for dependent (day/evening) care expenses, depending on the type of account you elect. Each year during IU Open Enrollment, you tell the university how much money to withhold from your paycheck during the tax year. This amount is divided equally among the paychecks you receive for the year. You do not pay taxes on this money, and it is put into an account for you to use for eligible health expenses or for dependent care expenses, depending on the type of account you elect.

When are my TSB funds available for use?

In the case of TSB funds, your entire yearly pledge amount is available for claim reimbursement on January 1 or for new employees, your hire date.

Do I ever pay taxes on the money put into the TSB accounts?

No. The amount you elect is deposited into the reimbursement accounts before federal income, Social Security and in most cases, state and local income taxes are withheld, so your deposits are completely tax-free. You are not taxed on reimbursements from these accounts either.

How do I contribute to a TSB?

You fund your TSB(s) with pre-tax dollars that are deducted from your pay in equal installments throughout the year. Just enroll in either the TSB Healthcare Reimbursement Account or the TSB Dependent Care Reimbursement Account, or both, during Open Enrollment or during the first 30 days of your employment with IU. Once enrolled online, an account will be open for you with Nyhart (the plan administrator) and your elected pledge amount will be divided equally among the paychecks you receive for the year.

When may I change my TSB contributions?

You may change your TSB contributions each year during open enrollment. You can only change your contributions mid-year if you have a qualifying life-event change such as marriage, or becoming a parent.

As a new participant, e.g., after a change in family status, if I enroll in a TSB account after January 1, can I elect all the way up to the maximum amount?

Yes. You can elect up to the annual maximum and you will have payroll deductions based on the number of pay periods remaining in the year.

If I have both the TSB Healthcare and the TSB Dependent Care Accounts, can I transfer money between them?

No. The Money you elect to deposit in an account must remain in that account. The accounts are separate.

How do I file a TSB claim?

Collect the receipts for expenses that were paid for out-of-pocket and print the TSB Claim Form (PDF) . Complete the form by providing Name, Employee ID, Address, Dependent Information (if the expense is for them), the Type of Expense, Date Incurred and the Amount. Multiple expenses can be listed on one claim form.

Send the TSB Claim Form and the supporting documents to Nyhart by:

  • Email:
  • Fax: (888) 887-9961
  • Mail: The Nyhart Company, Inc.
    Attention: Flex Claim Reimbursement
    8415 Allison Pointe Boulevard, Suite 300
    Indianapolis, IN 46250

Please do not send the same claim by multiple methods. For more information see the How to Submit a TSB Claim section.

What happens if I take a Leave Without Pay?

During FMLA leave (or other approved leave of absence) or when laid off during the Plan Year, the employee may either continue or suspend participation in the plan. If participation is suspended, the employee may either increase the per pay contribution upon return, so the total contribution will equal the annual election pledge, or the employee may reduce the annual election pledge and continue the original per pay contribution. If participation is suspended, the employee may not be reimbursed for expenses incurred during the leave or layoff. If participation is continued, the employee must make arrangements to continue contributions during the leave on an after-tax basis. Failure to make contributions during the leave will result in coverage being suspended, and expenses during the suspended period may not be reimbursed.

What happens to my TSB account(s) if I stop working for IU before the end of the year?

You may submit claims to your TSB account for eligible expenses incurred before your participation ended, up until the claims filing deadline of the following year (February 28 for the TSB Healthcare account and April 15 for the TSB Dependent Care account).

After leaving, you can continue participation in your TSB account for a limited time through COBRA. However, if you are eligible for COBRA continuation, your future contributions will be in after-tax dollars and you may need to pay a 2% administrative fee. If you elect to continue your participation, you may submit claims for expenses incurred for as long as you participate in the TSB plan.

What happens to my TSB if I die during the year?

Your contributions to your TSB stop. However, until the claims filing deadline, your survivors can continue to file eligible expenses you incurred before your death.

Who do I contact with questions?

The Nyhart Company:
Phone: (800) 284-8412
Fax: (888) 887-9961

University Human Resources :

TSB Healthcare

What is the contribution maximum for the TSB Healthcare account?

Eligible employees may contribute up to $2,500 annually to be reimbursed for IRS-qualified medical, prescription, dental and vision expenses. There is no minimum contribution.

How do I use the money in my TSB Healthcare account?

There are two ways to use your TSB Healthcare Reimbursement account. You may:

  1. Email, mail, fax, or submit claims online to Nyhart, the plan administrator, in order to receive reimbursement for expenses you have already paid; or
  2. Use the IU Benefit Card to pay for your expenses at the time of service.

What are eligible expenses for the TSB Healthcare account?

To be an eligible expense for the TSB Healthcare account, it must be for a product or service that is:

  • Medically necessary
  • For you, your lawful spouse, or anyone you can claim as a qualifying child or qualifying relative on your tax return, or for an eligible child age 25 or younger
  • Not reimbursed or is only partially reimbursed elsewhere, such as through an insurance plan

In addition, these rules apply to the TSB Healthcare account:

  • You cannot claim reimbursed expenses on your tax return as well
  • If both you and your spouse are eligible for a TSB Healthcare account, you can each contribute up to the maximum to separate accounts

What are the advantages of the TSB Healthcare account (especially when compared to the federal tax credit deduction for health care expenses)?

The expenses qualified under the TSB Healthcare Reimbursement Account are also qualified to be taken as itemized deductions against Federal Income Taxes. However, both methods cannot be used for the same expenses. Therefore, each employee must decide which method best meets their need.

The advantages depend on your income, exemptions, deductions and health care expenses. Generally, each pre-tax dollar you contribute lowers your current taxable income, so you end up reducing the current federal income tax and FICA tax that you have to pay. In most cases, you’ll also pay lower state and local income taxes.

A major difference between the TSB and the federal tax-credit is that the spending accounts allow you to pay for eligible expenses tax-free, starting with the first dollar of the expense, while you can claim a federal tax deduction only if the out-of-pocket health care expenses exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.

You may also use a combination of both the TSB Healthcare account and the federal income tax credit - but remember that any expenses which are reimbursed to you from the TSB Healthcare account cannot also be used for the purposes of claiming federal income tax credit. Any reimbursement you receive through the account will reduce the amount you can claim under the federal tax credit.

How am I supposed to know how much I’ll spend on health care next year?

A review of your recent bills can give you an idea of the cost you might expect to have. Or if you receive regular medical care or use medication daily, you can estimate those costs with some certainty. Also, think about what costs you can plan for, like eyeglasses, orthodontia and other eligible expenses. Don’t put money in your account for anything but predictable expenses. Any money left in your account, above the $500 carryover amount, after all eligible expenses for the year have been paid, will be forfeited. You may change the amount of your contribution only if you experience a qualified change in family status. (You have 31 days from the qualifying event to make any changes.)

The Castlight tool can be helpful for those in the PPO plans in reviewing past medical and prescription expenses.

What happens if I have a remaining balance in my TSB Healthcare account at the end of the year?

Beginning with accounts established in 2015, there will be a carryover provision at the end of the plan year.  IU will allow a carryover of up to $500 of unused TSB Healthcare account funds into a new account in the following plan year. Carryover provisions are as follows:

  • Expenses for a plan year can only be incurred from January 1 through December 31.
  • If there are unused funds, up to $500, remaining in the TSB Healthcare account on December 31, it will be rolled over into a new account for the next plan year.
  • Carryover funds will be available for use on January 1 of the following plan year and can be used for healthcare expenses incurred during that next plan year (regardless of whether the employee has re-enrolled in the TSB Healthcare account for the new plan year.)

When employees have more than $500 remaining in their TSB account on December 31st:

  • Employees will have until February 28th of the following plan year in which to submit final receipts and TSB Healthcare claims for reimbursement.
  • Any unused TSB Healthcare funds in the account after February 28th, when all receipts and claims are required to have been turned in, that are in excess of the $500 carryover amount will automatically be forfeit.
  • Any claims or receipts submitted for the prior plan year will first be applied against any unused balance above the $500 carryover amount, then to any balance in the carry-over account, then to the new TSB Healthcare account (if enrolled).
  • Usual usage restrictions apply when enrolled in both the HSA and TSB Healthcare accounts.

For year end provisions, see plan details under the TSB Healthcare Account plan page.

IU Benefit Card

Will I automatically receive an IU Benefit Card if I elect the TSB Healthcare account during Open Enrollment?

Yes.  Each employee will receive two cards per family. Employees may obtain additional debit cards, for use by other family members, by paying an additional bank fee. Additional cards can be ordered using the form on the Nyhart Web page (iu.nyhart.com) or by calling Nyhart at 1-800-284-8412. When giving cards to family members, remember the employee is responsible for substantiating purchases on all cards, as requested by Nyhart.

The IU Benefit card is effective for three years and participants can continue to use the card for that period as long as they enroll in either the TSB or HSA each year.  New cards are automatically reissued as they expire.  The card does not apply to the TSB Dependent Care Reimbursement Account.

What is the advantage of the IU Benefit Card?

The primary advantage is that you can pay for health services directly from your TSB Healthcare account at the time you are billed, and you do not have to wait to be reimbursed. However, you may still be required to substantiate some purchases with receipts, so the card does not completely eliminate the need to keep and submit receipts when requested. (The card cannot be used for dependent care expenses.)

How do I get an IU Benefit Card?

When enrolling online you will have the option to request a card on the TSB Healthcare account election page. If you are also enrolled in the HSA plan, you will automatically receive 2 cards in the mail.  These cards can then be used for both accounts.

When can I request the IU Benefit Card?

Requests for the card can be made during a one-time annual period during Open Enrollment. Cards cannot be obtained after this request period, except for newly hired employees making a new election.

When will I receive the IU Benefit Card?

If you enroll in the TSB Healthcare account during Open Enrollment, your card will be mailed to you by the end of December. The card will be issued and sent by Bankcorp Bank. It will be in a plain envelope and will not be identified as a Nyhart or Indiana University mailing. You will need to watch your mail carefully for the card. Each employee will receive two cards per family.

May I request more than the two initial IU Benefit Cards?

Employees may obtain additional debit cards, for use by family members, by paying an additional bank fee. Cards can be ordered using the form at iu.nyhart.com or by calling Nyhart at 1-800-284-8412. When giving cards to family members, remember the employee is responsible for substantiating purchases on all cards, as requested by Nyhart.

What expenses can I pay with the IU Benefit Card?

The card does not change any of the TSB plan rules for eligible expenses. The expenses must be IRS-eligible health expenses incurred by you, your spouse, or dependent during the tax year and not covered by insurance.* Examples of eligible expenses may include: deductibles, office visit co-pays, prescription co-pays, co-insurance costs, vision exams, eye glasses, contacts, saline solution, dental care, orthodontia, and certain over-the-counter items. A more complete list of eligible expenses is available at iu.nyhart.com. If you have questions about whether an item is eligible, you may contact Nyhart at 1-800-284-8412 or .

*For employees also enrolled in the Health Savings Account, reimbursements from your TSB Healthcare account are limited to dental and vision services until the 2015 HDHP deductible is met. Proof of meeting the deductible must be provided to Nyhart. Once the deductible is met for the year, the funds in the TSB can then be used for medical and prescription expenses, HOWEVER, the debit/Visa card will only pull medical and prescription expenses from the HSA account. To use the funds in the TSB Healthcare account for post-deductible medical and prescription expenses, you will need to pay for the expense out-of-pocket then submit a claim for reimbursement to Nyhart.

Why do I have to substantiate my IU Benefit Card purchases with receipts?

The IU Benefit Card cannot differentiate between IRS-eligible expenses and non-eligible expenses unless the merchant has installed an IRS-approved inventory system. The IRS requires that the employer take steps to verify that the IU Benefit Card is being used only for eligible expenses. Intentional misuse of the card is subject to IRS penalties. Submitting claims for review and storage also helps to protect the plan and employees, should they be audited by the IRS.

When do I have to submit my receipts as substantiation for my IU Benefit Card Purchases? What will happen if I do not submit them?

When a receipt is needed, Nyhart will send you an e-mail request for the receipt (U.S. mail if you do not provide an e-mail address) each time you use your card at an office or merchant that does not have an IRS-approved inventory system. Substantiation of these purchases is required. You will have two weeks to submit receipts. One reminder will be sent. If purchases are not substantiated within 30 days, your card will be deactivated. It will be reactivated as soon as you submit receipts. If you cannot provide receipts, you will be asked to send Nyhart a check to repay the unsubstantiated reimbursements from your account.

What if I accidentally used the card for an ineligible expense?

Your TSB account should only be used for eligible health expenses, but mistakes can happen. You should not be overly concerned if the card is used for ineligible expenses; however, you should take steps immediately to reimburse your account when you become aware of the problem. If Nyhart notices the error first, repayment will be requested and your card will be deactivated if your account is not reimbursed. An example of an ineligible expense might be a dental bill paid in January for services provided in December of the prior year. Please note that Nyhart makes reasonable efforts to verify the eligibility of expenses; however, the employee is ultimately responsible to the IRS for misuse of the card.

What if I lose the receipts for my purchases?

If you cannot substantiate your purchases, Nyhart will ask you to reimburse your account. Your card will be deactivated if you do not reimburse the account.

Can I use my card to pay for over-the-counter medicines that my doctor has suggested?

No, not unless you have a physician's prescription for the medicine. Due to a change in IRS regulations, TSB funds can no longer be used for over-the-counter medicines unless purchased with a physician's prescription beginning January 1, 2011. A partial list of eligible over-the-counter items is available at iu.nyhart.com. If you have questions about what items are eligible, contact Nyhart at 1-800-284-8412 or .

May I use my IU Benefit Card to pay for health insurance premiums?

No. You cannot use monies from your TSB account to pay for health insurance premiums.

What if my card purchase is for an amount greater than my account balance?

You will need to pay the excess amount out-of-pocket.

If I don’t want to use the IU Benefit Card for a particular expense, can I still pay for purchases and then submit receipts for reimbursement?

Yes. However, receipts submitted to Nyhart for substantiation of card purchases and receipts for reimbursement of claims must be clearly differentiated. Receipts for reimbursement must be accompanied by a claim form available from the UHR Web page. To submit receipts to substantiate card purchases, wait to receive an e-mail (or U.S. mail) request from Nyhart, then submit the receipts with a copy of the request. Do not use a claim form to substantiate card purchases. Doing so may result in the purchase amounts being deducted twice from your account.

What if I don't owe anything at my doctor's office, but get a bill later?

You can still use the card to pay the bill by writing your card number on the invoice and mailing it in, or by providing the card information over the phone. You may also use the card for mail order pharmacy service. However, be aware that expenses must be incurred during the plan year (January 1 – December 31st) and all claims and receipts must be submitted to Nyhart no later than February 28th of the next year.

What happens if I lose my card?

If you lose the card, contact Nyhart immediately. Nyhart will deactivate your card once they are notified. There may be a modest charge for replacing lost cards. Remember, no PIN is required to use the card, so you must report lost or stolen cards immediately.

Are there disadvantages to using the IU Benefit Card?

Here are some things to consider:

  • The card can be used inadvertently for ineligible items causing request for repayment of your account.
  • Using the card can make it easier to forget that receipts must be retained in order to substantiate claims as required.
  • Certain unsubstantiated purchases must be repaid or the card is deactivated.
  • Cards can be lost or stolen which requires reporting, cancellation, and reissue.
  • Most, but not all, providers accept the card.
  • If you sometimes use the card and at other times pay out-of-pocket, keeping track of different payment and substantiation methods may be bothersome.
  • If you are in the habit of saving receipts over the year and submitting them all at one time, the card may require multiple submissions.
  • When using the card at a merchant location, you must separate eligible expenses and pay for them separately from ineligible purchases. For example, if you purchase eligible over-the-counter medicines along with groceries, these purchases must be separated so the card is only used for eligible expenses. Also, please remember that the card may no longer be accepted at the main checkout counter of some grocery stores, discount stores, or pharmacies. Eligible over-the-counter items may have to be purchased separately at the pharmacy counter.
TSB Dependent Care

What is the contribution maximum for the TSB Dependent Care account?

An employee may contribute up to $5,000 annually ($2,500 for married employees who file separately). However, the maximum allowable expense cannot exceed the amount of earned income of the lesser-paid of the employee or spouse. There is no minimum contribution.

How do I determine whether the TSB Dependent Care Account or the federal tax credit is better for me?

Generally, the TSB Dependent Care Account is more advantageous. With Federal itemization, the tax credit permits exemption only on expenses up to $3,000 for one Dependent, or $6,000 for two or more Dependents. The exclusion is only on Federal Income Tax (FICA, state and local income taxes must still be paid). The benefit is received only after filing tax report forms at the end of the year.

However with the TSB account, the tax exemption is allowed for 100% of expenses up to $5,000 ($2,500 for married employees filing income taxes separately). This method reduces federal, FICA, state, and local income taxes. The tax benefits are received each pay check throughout the year.

See your tax advisor for more information on the IRS Publication 503.

What are the eligible expenses for the TSB Dependent Care account?

Generally, expenses are eligible for the following Dependents: children less than age 13; totally disabled Dependents; or Dependents otherwise eligible for Federal Income Tax purposes, if all of the following conditions are met:

  • The employee is unmarried, or if married, both the employee and spouse work or the spouse is a full-time student or is totally disabled; and
  • The Dependent care expense is incurred within the Plan Year to enable the employee and spouse to work; and
  • The expenses are paid to someone who is not also the employee's Dependent for federal income tax purposes and the caregiver reports the income for tax purposes; and
  • If divorced, the employee or spouse is the custodial parent; and
  • The services are not provided free of charge or for a period of time when the employee or spouse is providing the care, i.e., on vacation or leave; and
  • If provided by a day care facility, the facility meets all State and Local regulations; and
  • If for elder care, the elder Dependent lives in the employee's home at least 8 hours per day; and
  • The charges will not be claimed as a Federal Child Care Credit against Federal income taxes.

May I use the TSB Dependent Care Account to pay my daughter for taking care of my younger son while I work?

Perhaps. Your daughter’s charges are eligible if she is at least 19 years old and is not your dependent for tax purposes.

May I use the TSB Dependent Care Account to pay someone to take care of my elderly mother so I can work?

If your mother lives in your home, is listed as your dependent for tax purposes, and relies on you for support, you can use the TSB Dependent Care Account for her day care expenses.

Can I use the TSB Dependent Care Account to pay child support?

No. According to the IRS rules this account is to pay for the care of your children living with you and only when paying for such care enables you -- not your ex-spouse -- to work or go to school full time.




Page updated: 15 September 2015
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