Professional firefighters are provided with the option to take part in Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), which can help with Child Care assistance and other services.
An FSA affords employees the opportunity to set aside pre-tax contributions from their gross pay to be used towards expenses that qualify. A Dependent/Child Care FSA can be used for qualifying dependent care expenses.
A Dependent Care FSA (DCFSA) is a pre-tax benefit account that is used to pay for dependent Child Care services, such as preschool, summer day camp, before or after school programs, and child daycare. It’s a smart, simple way for you to save money while taking care of your children so that you can continue to work.
Why Enroll In An FSA Program?
- You will save an average of 30 percent on dependent Child Care services
- You will reduce your overall tax burden – funds are withdrawn from your paycheck for deposit into your account before taxes are deducted
- You will be able to take advantage of several convenient, no-hassle payment and reimbursement options
Who Is Eligible to Participate?
If you’re a professional firefighter and have children under the age of 13 years-old, you may set aside funds on a pre-tax basis to help pay for their care. Both you, and your spouse, if married, must work outside the home or be enrolled in school full time.
Dependent Care FSA Eligible Expenses
- Physical care, In-home care, such as a nanny or au pair, or institutional-setting care, such as child or adult daycare services, by qualified caregivers (siblings or relatives don’t count)
- Summer day camps
- Before- and after-school care
- Transportation provided by a caregiver
There is also a list of expenses that do not qualify for the FSA spending and you 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
- Private school tuition
- 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
- When claiming dependent care expenses, you must provide the SSN or Tax ID of the provider.
- Salary Reduction Amount: Minimum of $260, maximum of $5,000 PER family or $2,500 if married and filing separate tax returns
To take advantage of the flex benefits your employer provides, you should reach out to your Human Resources contact to learn how to enroll in a Dependent Care FSA today.