Whole Foods Child Care Assistance

Founded in 1980, Whole Foods Market Inc. is an American multinational corporation with its headquarters in Austin, Texas. Grown from an incredible business idea in 1978 from John Mackey and Renee Lawson, today, Whole Foods has its stores at more than 500 locations in the United States and the United Kingdom. In 2017 Amazon.com announced that they were going to acquire Whole Foods under a deal worth $13.7 billion. The very idea of Whole Foods is based on the hygienic, finest and organic food. They take food from local and international vendors who have strict quality standards and who comply with strict policies for satisfying nutritional requirements.

Whole Foods Child Care Assistance

Whole Foods provides standard benefits to its employees including career planning, coaching and mentoring, career resources, leadership programs and much more. One great benefit of Whole Foods for parents is the Child Care discount policy, where the Whole Foods employee benefits program gives incredible discounts to its employees and offers attractive packages to Child Care centers, compensating them for the expenses which they will pay for thier child (or adult) care.

Whole Foods Child Care Reimbursements

Whole Food has also introduced daycare Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), which parents can use for the qualified daycare expenses as per the IRS laws. The money which is designated for an FSA account, will be excluded from employee’s  taxable income, resulting in lower taxes to the government at the end of the day. Under this program, these FSA accounts can help parents a lot by using a part of their income for their Child Care or adult care, which would have been taxed otherwise.

To receive paid income back as reimbursement from a FSA, a claim form must be filled. Employees will have to provide evidence about their spending  to be qualified for  FSA reimbursement. FSA reimbursements can be rejected if  receipts get lost or there is not enough evidence about the legality of expenses. The information which should be mentioned on the receipt should be:

  • The total amount that is being spent
  • Name of the services
  • Employee’s name, address and other contact information
  • Social security number or tax identification number for required verification
  • The date

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) limits the total amount which can be spent under this program. According to the law, FSA is limited to $2,500 per person per year. But if an employee is a married or legal partnership, both of the partners can file the amount separately.

FSA has some case-specific rules too about the usage of the programs. For instance, in the case of divorced couples, only the legal custodian of the child will be allowed to use FSA funds for Child Care. The non-custodian will automatically be exempted from the program. A married or unmarried couple cannot use the funds directly until or unless both of them are working. If one spouse is not working, he/she cannot use the funds as per the policy until or unless one spouse is unable to work due to a disability. In the case of fraudulent activities or an attempt to abuse the system, the FSA account will be disabled and taxes will be charged or all the income which was misused.

Some benefits of using dependent care FSA are as follows:

  • Less taxable income
  • Save on average 30% of care for children under 13
  • Get the flexibility of spending on various options available in the program
  • To take advantage of reimbursement

There is also a list of expenses that do not qualify for the FSA spending and an employee must observe these limits while spending under FSA. The following expenditures do not qualify for FSA:

  • Any type of private tuition of the qualified person
  • Education at or above the kindergarten level does not come under the program
  • Late payment fees of any type
  • Any type of side program e.g. music classes etc
  • Overnight camp expenditures
  • Any type of expense on food, lodging, entertainment, and clothing
  • For recreational trips
  • Any type of housekeeping
  • Babysitting by a sibling

Additional Resources

Official Site (url)