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Eyewear Economics: Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?

Eyewear Economics: Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?

Eyewear Economics: Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?

Eyewear Economics: Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?

A clear-eyed 🤓 look at how you can use your HSA or FSA to pay for new glasses, eyewear, or accessories.

A clear-eyed 🤓 look at how you can use your HSA or FSA to pay for new glasses, eyewear, or accessories.

A clear-eyed 🤓 look at how you can use your HSA or FSA to pay for new glasses, eyewear, or accessories.

A clear-eyed 🤓 look at how you can use your HSA or FSA to pay for new glasses, eyewear, or accessories.

January 4, 2024
January 4, 2024
January 4, 2024
January 4, 2024
Sam O'Keefe
Co-founder & CEO of Flex
Sam O'Keefe
Co-founder & CEO of Flex
Sam O'Keefe
Co-founder & CEO of Flex
Sam O'Keefe
Co-founder & CEO of Flex
Flex - Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?
Flex - Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?
Flex - Can You Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Glasses?

Overview

Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 


Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 

What We’ll Cover About Using Your HSA/FSA for Glasses

In this article, we discuss vision insurance coverage, scenarios where your HSA or FSA can be used for glasses, some potential limitations, and eligibility criteria for various types of eyewear, among other topics:

  • What does vision insurance cover?

  • When can you use HSA/FSA for glasses?

  • The types of glasses that are eligible for HSA/FSA reimbursement

  • What eyeglasses accessories are HSA/FSA eligible

  • How to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses

  • Why it’s so much better with Flex

What Does Vision Insurance Cover?

Before going into the intricacies of using your HSA or FSA for glasses, the first place to start is understanding the scope of coverage provided by your vision insurance. 

Vision insurance typically pays for routine eye exams, prescription glasses, and contact lenses. However, the breadth of coverage varies based on the specific plan. For example, additional services, such as lens coatings, frames, and elective procedures, may not be fully covered, which means you might be able to use your HSA or FSA for these out-of-pocket expenses.

How prescription glasses can enhance your quality of life

Prescription glasses can dramatically improve your well-being by alleviating the daily challenges associated with blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches, among many other conditions. With improved sight you can navigate your day-to-day with confidence and comfort, improve productivity, get around more safely, and generally feel better.

When Can You Use HSA/FSA for Glasses?

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow individuals to set aside pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses. 

Fortunately, the cost of prescription eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses falls within the realm of eligible expenses. These accounts can be used to cover things like the purchase of prescription glasses, lenses, frames, and lens enhancements.

However, HSA and FSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription sunglasses or purely cosmetic eyewear. Further, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is a prerequisite to utilize these accounts for your glasses.

Is There an FSA or HSA Glasses Limit?

At the moment, there isn't a specific limit imposed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the number of pairs of prescription glasses covered by HSAs or FSAs. That’s good news if you like to have different looks for different occasions, use specialized safety goggles while at work, or need speciality lenses for sport or recreation.

The Types of Glasses That Are Eligible for FSA/HSA Reimbursement

Are sunglasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Prescription sunglasses are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. This is because they serve a medical purpose, such as correcting vision issues like myopia (when distant objects appear blurry, also known as near-sightedness or short-sightedness) or astigmatism (distorted or blurred vision at any distance), aligning with the criteria set by the IRS for qualified medical expenses. 

You might also wonder, are polarized sunglasses FSA or HSA eligible? Yes, sunglasses with polarized lenses that are necessary for a medical purpose are also covered.

Conversely, non-prescription sunglasses primarily intended for sun protection and lacking corrective lenses are generally not eligible for HSA or FSA reimbursement. 

Distinguishing between the two is important to ensure compliance with the IRS guidelines.

Can you use HSA for contacts?

Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts can be used to cover the costs associated with prescription contact lenses. This includes both soft and gas-permeable lenses, as long as they are prescribed by a qualified eye care professional. 

However, similar to glasses, HSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription or cosmetic contact lenses. (Sorry, cat eyes are not covered!).

Note that some vision insurance plans may already cover a portion of the cost of prescription contact lenses. In such cases, individuals can use their HSA funds to cover any remaining out-of-pocket expenses, maximizing the benefits of both their insurance and HSA.

Are reading glasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Reading glasses, commonly used to address presbyopia (difficulty focusing on close objects, also known as age-related farsightedness) or other age-related vision issues, are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. As with prescription eyeglasses, a valid prescription from an eye care professional is required for the purchase to be considered a qualified medical expense.

It's essential to distinguish between reading glasses with a prescription and over-the-counter reading glasses. Only those with a prescription are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts, which emphasizes the importance of obtaining professional advice when addressing specific vision needs.

Are blue light glasses HSA eligible?

With increased use of digital devices, blue light glasses have gained popularity for reducing eye strain and minimizing potential damage from prolonged screen exposure. The question arises: are these glasses eligible for reimbursement through Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)?

Yes! Non-prescription blue light glasses are eligible for reimbursement. Note that regulations can change, so before making a purchase be sure to consult with your HSA or FSA administrator for the most up-to-date information on eligibility criteria.

Can I buy designer glasses with HSA/FSA?

Is that stylish eyewear you’re eyeing covered by your HSA or FSA? The answer depends on the primary purpose of the glasses.

If the designer glasses have a prescription and are deemed medically necessary by a qualified eye care professional, they may be eligible for reimbursement. However, if the purchase is purely for cosmetic reasons and lacks a corrective prescription, it is unlikely to meet the criteria for qualified medical expenses.

What about specialty eyewear?

The term “specialty eyewear” refers to items designed for specific purposes beyond traditional vision correction. Here, we explore the eligibility criteria for HSAs and FSAs concerning safety goggles, sports masks, prescription anti-fatigue glasses, and progressive glasses. 

  • Safety Goggles: Occupational hazards necessitate protective eyewear, and the good news is that safety goggles may be eligible for reimbursement. As you have noticed so far, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is crucial to establish medical necessity.


  • Sports Masks: When prescribed for vision correction during sports activities, sports masks may qualify as eligible expenses under HSA and FSA guidelines.


  • Prescription Anti-Fatigue Glasses: If a qualified eye care professional prescribes anti-fatigue glasses to alleviate digital eye strain or visual fatigue, they may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Progressive Glasses: HSAs and FSAs commonly cover progressive glasses when prescribed by a qualified eye care professional as these lenses serve a medical purpose by addressing a specific vision impairment.

What Eyeglasses Accessories are HSA/FSA Eligible?

Beyond lenses, frames and cases, there are a whole host of accessories for glasses or contacts, many of which qualify as eligible expenses:

  • Lens Coatings: Coatings such as anti-glare or scratch-resistant coatings are generally eligible for reimbursement as they serve a medical purpose in enhancing the durability and performance of the lenses.

  • Contact Solution: Contact solution, commonly known as contact lens solution or saline solution, is typically an eligible expense under Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA).


  • Transition Lenses: Transition lenses, which adjust their tint based on lighting conditions, are typically eligible for reimbursement if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional to address specific vision needs.


  • Replacement Parts: Replacement parts like nose pads or temple tips, when needed for medical reasons, may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Repair Kits: While the cost of a repair kit may not be eligible, the repair of damaged glasses is generally considered a qualified expense.


  • Eye Strain Relief Accessories: Accessories designed to alleviate eye strain, such as specialized lens coatings or filters, may be eligible if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional.


  • Glasses cases: Are glasses cases HSA eligible? While prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses are typically eligible expenses, accessories like glasses cases may not meet the criteria for reimbursement unless they are specifically designed for the preservation or protection of the eyewear due to a medical necessity.

How to Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Eyeglasses

Here is a quick guide on how you can use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses or eyeglasses accessories:

  • Get a Prescription: Obtain a valid prescription from your vision care provider.

  • Review the Guidelines: Examine your HSA or FSA plan details or talk with your provider about eligible expenses.

  • Buy with Purpose: Choose prescription eyeglasses, ensuring they meet medical necessity criteria.

  • Keep Records: Keep receipts, invoices, and your prescription for reimbursement purposes.

  • Stay Timely: Be aware of reimbursement deadlines.

  • Submit Claims: Either use your HSA or FSA debit card or submit a claim for eligible expenses.

Do I need a letter of medical necessity (LOMN) to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses?

A Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is a document written by a qualified healthcare professional that outlines the medical reasons why a specific treatment, service, or item is deemed necessary for an individual's health.

In most cases, a Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is not necessary for using Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) funds to pay for eyeglasses. Typically, a valid prescription from a qualified eye care professional is sufficient. However, obtaining an LOMN can be a proactive step to ensure that you have comprehensive documentation, especially if your needs go beyond standard prescription lenses.

Why It’s So Much Better With Flex

For items not typically covered by your HSA or FSA, such as blue light glasses, Flex simplifies the process of purchase. Here how it works if you buy from a merchant who has partnered with us:

For pre-approved vision-related items, such as prescription glasses or contact lenses: Pay for the product or service with your HSA or FSA card. Flex substantiates the purchase automatically, meaning you don't need to submit for reimbursement.

If the item falls outside of standard IRS guidelines, like safety goggles or sport masks: Flex will check your eligibility for a Letter of Medical Necessity. When you go to checkout, a doctor’s appointment takes place: 

  • Fill out a short eligibility form, sharing relevant information with Flex’s medical team. 

  • If you qualify, Flex sends the LOMN to you via email.

  • Enter your HSA or FSA card details and complete the purchase. Again, no more need for reimbursements!

Clear Vision, Clear Savings

Using your Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account to cover the costs of your new prescription glasses is a good look for you and your wallet. 

In fact, because these accounts are tax-advantaged — meaning you don’t pay taxes for money you put in or take out — consumers, on average, save 30 to 40% percent on purchases they make with their HSA/FSA! If that caught your attention (we’re sure it did), you might want to check out what else you can use your HSA and FSA for.

When it comes to managing eye care expenses, read up, get your prescription, and get yourself a better perspective on life.

Overview

Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 


Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 

What We’ll Cover About Using Your HSA/FSA for Glasses

In this article, we discuss vision insurance coverage, scenarios where your HSA or FSA can be used for glasses, some potential limitations, and eligibility criteria for various types of eyewear, among other topics:

  • What does vision insurance cover?

  • When can you use HSA/FSA for glasses?

  • The types of glasses that are eligible for HSA/FSA reimbursement

  • What eyeglasses accessories are HSA/FSA eligible

  • How to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses

  • Why it’s so much better with Flex

What Does Vision Insurance Cover?

Before going into the intricacies of using your HSA or FSA for glasses, the first place to start is understanding the scope of coverage provided by your vision insurance. 

Vision insurance typically pays for routine eye exams, prescription glasses, and contact lenses. However, the breadth of coverage varies based on the specific plan. For example, additional services, such as lens coatings, frames, and elective procedures, may not be fully covered, which means you might be able to use your HSA or FSA for these out-of-pocket expenses.

How prescription glasses can enhance your quality of life

Prescription glasses can dramatically improve your well-being by alleviating the daily challenges associated with blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches, among many other conditions. With improved sight you can navigate your day-to-day with confidence and comfort, improve productivity, get around more safely, and generally feel better.

When Can You Use HSA/FSA for Glasses?

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow individuals to set aside pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses. 

Fortunately, the cost of prescription eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses falls within the realm of eligible expenses. These accounts can be used to cover things like the purchase of prescription glasses, lenses, frames, and lens enhancements.

However, HSA and FSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription sunglasses or purely cosmetic eyewear. Further, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is a prerequisite to utilize these accounts for your glasses.

Is There an FSA or HSA Glasses Limit?

At the moment, there isn't a specific limit imposed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the number of pairs of prescription glasses covered by HSAs or FSAs. That’s good news if you like to have different looks for different occasions, use specialized safety goggles while at work, or need speciality lenses for sport or recreation.

The Types of Glasses That Are Eligible for FSA/HSA Reimbursement

Are sunglasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Prescription sunglasses are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. This is because they serve a medical purpose, such as correcting vision issues like myopia (when distant objects appear blurry, also known as near-sightedness or short-sightedness) or astigmatism (distorted or blurred vision at any distance), aligning with the criteria set by the IRS for qualified medical expenses. 

You might also wonder, are polarized sunglasses FSA or HSA eligible? Yes, sunglasses with polarized lenses that are necessary for a medical purpose are also covered.

Conversely, non-prescription sunglasses primarily intended for sun protection and lacking corrective lenses are generally not eligible for HSA or FSA reimbursement. 

Distinguishing between the two is important to ensure compliance with the IRS guidelines.

Can you use HSA for contacts?

Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts can be used to cover the costs associated with prescription contact lenses. This includes both soft and gas-permeable lenses, as long as they are prescribed by a qualified eye care professional. 

However, similar to glasses, HSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription or cosmetic contact lenses. (Sorry, cat eyes are not covered!).

Note that some vision insurance plans may already cover a portion of the cost of prescription contact lenses. In such cases, individuals can use their HSA funds to cover any remaining out-of-pocket expenses, maximizing the benefits of both their insurance and HSA.

Are reading glasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Reading glasses, commonly used to address presbyopia (difficulty focusing on close objects, also known as age-related farsightedness) or other age-related vision issues, are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. As with prescription eyeglasses, a valid prescription from an eye care professional is required for the purchase to be considered a qualified medical expense.

It's essential to distinguish between reading glasses with a prescription and over-the-counter reading glasses. Only those with a prescription are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts, which emphasizes the importance of obtaining professional advice when addressing specific vision needs.

Are blue light glasses HSA eligible?

With increased use of digital devices, blue light glasses have gained popularity for reducing eye strain and minimizing potential damage from prolonged screen exposure. The question arises: are these glasses eligible for reimbursement through Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)?

Yes! Non-prescription blue light glasses are eligible for reimbursement. Note that regulations can change, so before making a purchase be sure to consult with your HSA or FSA administrator for the most up-to-date information on eligibility criteria.

Can I buy designer glasses with HSA/FSA?

Is that stylish eyewear you’re eyeing covered by your HSA or FSA? The answer depends on the primary purpose of the glasses.

If the designer glasses have a prescription and are deemed medically necessary by a qualified eye care professional, they may be eligible for reimbursement. However, if the purchase is purely for cosmetic reasons and lacks a corrective prescription, it is unlikely to meet the criteria for qualified medical expenses.

What about specialty eyewear?

The term “specialty eyewear” refers to items designed for specific purposes beyond traditional vision correction. Here, we explore the eligibility criteria for HSAs and FSAs concerning safety goggles, sports masks, prescription anti-fatigue glasses, and progressive glasses. 

  • Safety Goggles: Occupational hazards necessitate protective eyewear, and the good news is that safety goggles may be eligible for reimbursement. As you have noticed so far, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is crucial to establish medical necessity.


  • Sports Masks: When prescribed for vision correction during sports activities, sports masks may qualify as eligible expenses under HSA and FSA guidelines.


  • Prescription Anti-Fatigue Glasses: If a qualified eye care professional prescribes anti-fatigue glasses to alleviate digital eye strain or visual fatigue, they may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Progressive Glasses: HSAs and FSAs commonly cover progressive glasses when prescribed by a qualified eye care professional as these lenses serve a medical purpose by addressing a specific vision impairment.

What Eyeglasses Accessories are HSA/FSA Eligible?

Beyond lenses, frames and cases, there are a whole host of accessories for glasses or contacts, many of which qualify as eligible expenses:

  • Lens Coatings: Coatings such as anti-glare or scratch-resistant coatings are generally eligible for reimbursement as they serve a medical purpose in enhancing the durability and performance of the lenses.

  • Contact Solution: Contact solution, commonly known as contact lens solution or saline solution, is typically an eligible expense under Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA).


  • Transition Lenses: Transition lenses, which adjust their tint based on lighting conditions, are typically eligible for reimbursement if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional to address specific vision needs.


  • Replacement Parts: Replacement parts like nose pads or temple tips, when needed for medical reasons, may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Repair Kits: While the cost of a repair kit may not be eligible, the repair of damaged glasses is generally considered a qualified expense.


  • Eye Strain Relief Accessories: Accessories designed to alleviate eye strain, such as specialized lens coatings or filters, may be eligible if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional.


  • Glasses cases: Are glasses cases HSA eligible? While prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses are typically eligible expenses, accessories like glasses cases may not meet the criteria for reimbursement unless they are specifically designed for the preservation or protection of the eyewear due to a medical necessity.

How to Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Eyeglasses

Here is a quick guide on how you can use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses or eyeglasses accessories:

  • Get a Prescription: Obtain a valid prescription from your vision care provider.

  • Review the Guidelines: Examine your HSA or FSA plan details or talk with your provider about eligible expenses.

  • Buy with Purpose: Choose prescription eyeglasses, ensuring they meet medical necessity criteria.

  • Keep Records: Keep receipts, invoices, and your prescription for reimbursement purposes.

  • Stay Timely: Be aware of reimbursement deadlines.

  • Submit Claims: Either use your HSA or FSA debit card or submit a claim for eligible expenses.

Do I need a letter of medical necessity (LOMN) to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses?

A Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is a document written by a qualified healthcare professional that outlines the medical reasons why a specific treatment, service, or item is deemed necessary for an individual's health.

In most cases, a Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is not necessary for using Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) funds to pay for eyeglasses. Typically, a valid prescription from a qualified eye care professional is sufficient. However, obtaining an LOMN can be a proactive step to ensure that you have comprehensive documentation, especially if your needs go beyond standard prescription lenses.

Why It’s So Much Better With Flex

For items not typically covered by your HSA or FSA, such as blue light glasses, Flex simplifies the process of purchase. Here how it works if you buy from a merchant who has partnered with us:

For pre-approved vision-related items, such as prescription glasses or contact lenses: Pay for the product or service with your HSA or FSA card. Flex substantiates the purchase automatically, meaning you don't need to submit for reimbursement.

If the item falls outside of standard IRS guidelines, like safety goggles or sport masks: Flex will check your eligibility for a Letter of Medical Necessity. When you go to checkout, a doctor’s appointment takes place: 

  • Fill out a short eligibility form, sharing relevant information with Flex’s medical team. 

  • If you qualify, Flex sends the LOMN to you via email.

  • Enter your HSA or FSA card details and complete the purchase. Again, no more need for reimbursements!

Clear Vision, Clear Savings

Using your Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account to cover the costs of your new prescription glasses is a good look for you and your wallet. 

In fact, because these accounts are tax-advantaged — meaning you don’t pay taxes for money you put in or take out — consumers, on average, save 30 to 40% percent on purchases they make with their HSA/FSA! If that caught your attention (we’re sure it did), you might want to check out what else you can use your HSA and FSA for.

When it comes to managing eye care expenses, read up, get your prescription, and get yourself a better perspective on life.

Overview

Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 


Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 

What We’ll Cover About Using Your HSA/FSA for Glasses

In this article, we discuss vision insurance coverage, scenarios where your HSA or FSA can be used for glasses, some potential limitations, and eligibility criteria for various types of eyewear, among other topics:

  • What does vision insurance cover?

  • When can you use HSA/FSA for glasses?

  • The types of glasses that are eligible for HSA/FSA reimbursement

  • What eyeglasses accessories are HSA/FSA eligible

  • How to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses

  • Why it’s so much better with Flex

What Does Vision Insurance Cover?

Before going into the intricacies of using your HSA or FSA for glasses, the first place to start is understanding the scope of coverage provided by your vision insurance. 

Vision insurance typically pays for routine eye exams, prescription glasses, and contact lenses. However, the breadth of coverage varies based on the specific plan. For example, additional services, such as lens coatings, frames, and elective procedures, may not be fully covered, which means you might be able to use your HSA or FSA for these out-of-pocket expenses.

How prescription glasses can enhance your quality of life

Prescription glasses can dramatically improve your well-being by alleviating the daily challenges associated with blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches, among many other conditions. With improved sight you can navigate your day-to-day with confidence and comfort, improve productivity, get around more safely, and generally feel better.

When Can You Use HSA/FSA for Glasses?

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow individuals to set aside pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses. 

Fortunately, the cost of prescription eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses falls within the realm of eligible expenses. These accounts can be used to cover things like the purchase of prescription glasses, lenses, frames, and lens enhancements.

However, HSA and FSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription sunglasses or purely cosmetic eyewear. Further, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is a prerequisite to utilize these accounts for your glasses.

Is There an FSA or HSA Glasses Limit?

At the moment, there isn't a specific limit imposed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the number of pairs of prescription glasses covered by HSAs or FSAs. That’s good news if you like to have different looks for different occasions, use specialized safety goggles while at work, or need speciality lenses for sport or recreation.

The Types of Glasses That Are Eligible for FSA/HSA Reimbursement

Are sunglasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Prescription sunglasses are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. This is because they serve a medical purpose, such as correcting vision issues like myopia (when distant objects appear blurry, also known as near-sightedness or short-sightedness) or astigmatism (distorted or blurred vision at any distance), aligning with the criteria set by the IRS for qualified medical expenses. 

You might also wonder, are polarized sunglasses FSA or HSA eligible? Yes, sunglasses with polarized lenses that are necessary for a medical purpose are also covered.

Conversely, non-prescription sunglasses primarily intended for sun protection and lacking corrective lenses are generally not eligible for HSA or FSA reimbursement. 

Distinguishing between the two is important to ensure compliance with the IRS guidelines.

Can you use HSA for contacts?

Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts can be used to cover the costs associated with prescription contact lenses. This includes both soft and gas-permeable lenses, as long as they are prescribed by a qualified eye care professional. 

However, similar to glasses, HSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription or cosmetic contact lenses. (Sorry, cat eyes are not covered!).

Note that some vision insurance plans may already cover a portion of the cost of prescription contact lenses. In such cases, individuals can use their HSA funds to cover any remaining out-of-pocket expenses, maximizing the benefits of both their insurance and HSA.

Are reading glasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Reading glasses, commonly used to address presbyopia (difficulty focusing on close objects, also known as age-related farsightedness) or other age-related vision issues, are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. As with prescription eyeglasses, a valid prescription from an eye care professional is required for the purchase to be considered a qualified medical expense.

It's essential to distinguish between reading glasses with a prescription and over-the-counter reading glasses. Only those with a prescription are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts, which emphasizes the importance of obtaining professional advice when addressing specific vision needs.

Are blue light glasses HSA eligible?

With increased use of digital devices, blue light glasses have gained popularity for reducing eye strain and minimizing potential damage from prolonged screen exposure. The question arises: are these glasses eligible for reimbursement through Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)?

Yes! Non-prescription blue light glasses are eligible for reimbursement. Note that regulations can change, so before making a purchase be sure to consult with your HSA or FSA administrator for the most up-to-date information on eligibility criteria.

Can I buy designer glasses with HSA/FSA?

Is that stylish eyewear you’re eyeing covered by your HSA or FSA? The answer depends on the primary purpose of the glasses.

If the designer glasses have a prescription and are deemed medically necessary by a qualified eye care professional, they may be eligible for reimbursement. However, if the purchase is purely for cosmetic reasons and lacks a corrective prescription, it is unlikely to meet the criteria for qualified medical expenses.

What about specialty eyewear?

The term “specialty eyewear” refers to items designed for specific purposes beyond traditional vision correction. Here, we explore the eligibility criteria for HSAs and FSAs concerning safety goggles, sports masks, prescription anti-fatigue glasses, and progressive glasses. 

  • Safety Goggles: Occupational hazards necessitate protective eyewear, and the good news is that safety goggles may be eligible for reimbursement. As you have noticed so far, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is crucial to establish medical necessity.


  • Sports Masks: When prescribed for vision correction during sports activities, sports masks may qualify as eligible expenses under HSA and FSA guidelines.


  • Prescription Anti-Fatigue Glasses: If a qualified eye care professional prescribes anti-fatigue glasses to alleviate digital eye strain or visual fatigue, they may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Progressive Glasses: HSAs and FSAs commonly cover progressive glasses when prescribed by a qualified eye care professional as these lenses serve a medical purpose by addressing a specific vision impairment.

What Eyeglasses Accessories are HSA/FSA Eligible?

Beyond lenses, frames and cases, there are a whole host of accessories for glasses or contacts, many of which qualify as eligible expenses:

  • Lens Coatings: Coatings such as anti-glare or scratch-resistant coatings are generally eligible for reimbursement as they serve a medical purpose in enhancing the durability and performance of the lenses.

  • Contact Solution: Contact solution, commonly known as contact lens solution or saline solution, is typically an eligible expense under Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA).


  • Transition Lenses: Transition lenses, which adjust their tint based on lighting conditions, are typically eligible for reimbursement if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional to address specific vision needs.


  • Replacement Parts: Replacement parts like nose pads or temple tips, when needed for medical reasons, may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Repair Kits: While the cost of a repair kit may not be eligible, the repair of damaged glasses is generally considered a qualified expense.


  • Eye Strain Relief Accessories: Accessories designed to alleviate eye strain, such as specialized lens coatings or filters, may be eligible if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional.


  • Glasses cases: Are glasses cases HSA eligible? While prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses are typically eligible expenses, accessories like glasses cases may not meet the criteria for reimbursement unless they are specifically designed for the preservation or protection of the eyewear due to a medical necessity.

How to Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Eyeglasses

Here is a quick guide on how you can use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses or eyeglasses accessories:

  • Get a Prescription: Obtain a valid prescription from your vision care provider.

  • Review the Guidelines: Examine your HSA or FSA plan details or talk with your provider about eligible expenses.

  • Buy with Purpose: Choose prescription eyeglasses, ensuring they meet medical necessity criteria.

  • Keep Records: Keep receipts, invoices, and your prescription for reimbursement purposes.

  • Stay Timely: Be aware of reimbursement deadlines.

  • Submit Claims: Either use your HSA or FSA debit card or submit a claim for eligible expenses.

Do I need a letter of medical necessity (LOMN) to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses?

A Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is a document written by a qualified healthcare professional that outlines the medical reasons why a specific treatment, service, or item is deemed necessary for an individual's health.

In most cases, a Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is not necessary for using Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) funds to pay for eyeglasses. Typically, a valid prescription from a qualified eye care professional is sufficient. However, obtaining an LOMN can be a proactive step to ensure that you have comprehensive documentation, especially if your needs go beyond standard prescription lenses.

Why It’s So Much Better With Flex

For items not typically covered by your HSA or FSA, such as blue light glasses, Flex simplifies the process of purchase. Here how it works if you buy from a merchant who has partnered with us:

For pre-approved vision-related items, such as prescription glasses or contact lenses: Pay for the product or service with your HSA or FSA card. Flex substantiates the purchase automatically, meaning you don't need to submit for reimbursement.

If the item falls outside of standard IRS guidelines, like safety goggles or sport masks: Flex will check your eligibility for a Letter of Medical Necessity. When you go to checkout, a doctor’s appointment takes place: 

  • Fill out a short eligibility form, sharing relevant information with Flex’s medical team. 

  • If you qualify, Flex sends the LOMN to you via email.

  • Enter your HSA or FSA card details and complete the purchase. Again, no more need for reimbursements!

Clear Vision, Clear Savings

Using your Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account to cover the costs of your new prescription glasses is a good look for you and your wallet. 

In fact, because these accounts are tax-advantaged — meaning you don’t pay taxes for money you put in or take out — consumers, on average, save 30 to 40% percent on purchases they make with their HSA/FSA! If that caught your attention (we’re sure it did), you might want to check out what else you can use your HSA and FSA for.

When it comes to managing eye care expenses, read up, get your prescription, and get yourself a better perspective on life.

Overview

Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 


Since the rules for how to use your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) might be a little fuzzy, let’s put on our reading specs to see how you can get new eyewear and save some money too. 

What We’ll Cover About Using Your HSA/FSA for Glasses

In this article, we discuss vision insurance coverage, scenarios where your HSA or FSA can be used for glasses, some potential limitations, and eligibility criteria for various types of eyewear, among other topics:

  • What does vision insurance cover?

  • When can you use HSA/FSA for glasses?

  • The types of glasses that are eligible for HSA/FSA reimbursement

  • What eyeglasses accessories are HSA/FSA eligible

  • How to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses

  • Why it’s so much better with Flex

What Does Vision Insurance Cover?

Before going into the intricacies of using your HSA or FSA for glasses, the first place to start is understanding the scope of coverage provided by your vision insurance. 

Vision insurance typically pays for routine eye exams, prescription glasses, and contact lenses. However, the breadth of coverage varies based on the specific plan. For example, additional services, such as lens coatings, frames, and elective procedures, may not be fully covered, which means you might be able to use your HSA or FSA for these out-of-pocket expenses.

How prescription glasses can enhance your quality of life

Prescription glasses can dramatically improve your well-being by alleviating the daily challenges associated with blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches, among many other conditions. With improved sight you can navigate your day-to-day with confidence and comfort, improve productivity, get around more safely, and generally feel better.

When Can You Use HSA/FSA for Glasses?

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow individuals to set aside pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses. 

Fortunately, the cost of prescription eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses falls within the realm of eligible expenses. These accounts can be used to cover things like the purchase of prescription glasses, lenses, frames, and lens enhancements.

However, HSA and FSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription sunglasses or purely cosmetic eyewear. Further, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is a prerequisite to utilize these accounts for your glasses.

Is There an FSA or HSA Glasses Limit?

At the moment, there isn't a specific limit imposed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on the number of pairs of prescription glasses covered by HSAs or FSAs. That’s good news if you like to have different looks for different occasions, use specialized safety goggles while at work, or need speciality lenses for sport or recreation.

The Types of Glasses That Are Eligible for FSA/HSA Reimbursement

Are sunglasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Prescription sunglasses are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. This is because they serve a medical purpose, such as correcting vision issues like myopia (when distant objects appear blurry, also known as near-sightedness or short-sightedness) or astigmatism (distorted or blurred vision at any distance), aligning with the criteria set by the IRS for qualified medical expenses. 

You might also wonder, are polarized sunglasses FSA or HSA eligible? Yes, sunglasses with polarized lenses that are necessary for a medical purpose are also covered.

Conversely, non-prescription sunglasses primarily intended for sun protection and lacking corrective lenses are generally not eligible for HSA or FSA reimbursement. 

Distinguishing between the two is important to ensure compliance with the IRS guidelines.

Can you use HSA for contacts?

Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts can be used to cover the costs associated with prescription contact lenses. This includes both soft and gas-permeable lenses, as long as they are prescribed by a qualified eye care professional. 

However, similar to glasses, HSA funds cannot be used for non-prescription or cosmetic contact lenses. (Sorry, cat eyes are not covered!).

Note that some vision insurance plans may already cover a portion of the cost of prescription contact lenses. In such cases, individuals can use their HSA funds to cover any remaining out-of-pocket expenses, maximizing the benefits of both their insurance and HSA.

Are reading glasses FSA/HSA eligible?

Reading glasses, commonly used to address presbyopia (difficulty focusing on close objects, also known as age-related farsightedness) or other age-related vision issues, are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts. As with prescription eyeglasses, a valid prescription from an eye care professional is required for the purchase to be considered a qualified medical expense.

It's essential to distinguish between reading glasses with a prescription and over-the-counter reading glasses. Only those with a prescription are eligible for reimbursement through HSA and FSA accounts, which emphasizes the importance of obtaining professional advice when addressing specific vision needs.

Are blue light glasses HSA eligible?

With increased use of digital devices, blue light glasses have gained popularity for reducing eye strain and minimizing potential damage from prolonged screen exposure. The question arises: are these glasses eligible for reimbursement through Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)?

Yes! Non-prescription blue light glasses are eligible for reimbursement. Note that regulations can change, so before making a purchase be sure to consult with your HSA or FSA administrator for the most up-to-date information on eligibility criteria.

Can I buy designer glasses with HSA/FSA?

Is that stylish eyewear you’re eyeing covered by your HSA or FSA? The answer depends on the primary purpose of the glasses.

If the designer glasses have a prescription and are deemed medically necessary by a qualified eye care professional, they may be eligible for reimbursement. However, if the purchase is purely for cosmetic reasons and lacks a corrective prescription, it is unlikely to meet the criteria for qualified medical expenses.

What about specialty eyewear?

The term “specialty eyewear” refers to items designed for specific purposes beyond traditional vision correction. Here, we explore the eligibility criteria for HSAs and FSAs concerning safety goggles, sports masks, prescription anti-fatigue glasses, and progressive glasses. 

  • Safety Goggles: Occupational hazards necessitate protective eyewear, and the good news is that safety goggles may be eligible for reimbursement. As you have noticed so far, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is crucial to establish medical necessity.


  • Sports Masks: When prescribed for vision correction during sports activities, sports masks may qualify as eligible expenses under HSA and FSA guidelines.


  • Prescription Anti-Fatigue Glasses: If a qualified eye care professional prescribes anti-fatigue glasses to alleviate digital eye strain or visual fatigue, they may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Progressive Glasses: HSAs and FSAs commonly cover progressive glasses when prescribed by a qualified eye care professional as these lenses serve a medical purpose by addressing a specific vision impairment.

What Eyeglasses Accessories are HSA/FSA Eligible?

Beyond lenses, frames and cases, there are a whole host of accessories for glasses or contacts, many of which qualify as eligible expenses:

  • Lens Coatings: Coatings such as anti-glare or scratch-resistant coatings are generally eligible for reimbursement as they serve a medical purpose in enhancing the durability and performance of the lenses.

  • Contact Solution: Contact solution, commonly known as contact lens solution or saline solution, is typically an eligible expense under Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA).


  • Transition Lenses: Transition lenses, which adjust their tint based on lighting conditions, are typically eligible for reimbursement if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional to address specific vision needs.


  • Replacement Parts: Replacement parts like nose pads or temple tips, when needed for medical reasons, may be considered eligible expenses.


  • Repair Kits: While the cost of a repair kit may not be eligible, the repair of damaged glasses is generally considered a qualified expense.


  • Eye Strain Relief Accessories: Accessories designed to alleviate eye strain, such as specialized lens coatings or filters, may be eligible if prescribed by a qualified eye care professional.


  • Glasses cases: Are glasses cases HSA eligible? While prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses are typically eligible expenses, accessories like glasses cases may not meet the criteria for reimbursement unless they are specifically designed for the preservation or protection of the eyewear due to a medical necessity.

How to Use HSA/FSA to Pay for Eyeglasses

Here is a quick guide on how you can use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses or eyeglasses accessories:

  • Get a Prescription: Obtain a valid prescription from your vision care provider.

  • Review the Guidelines: Examine your HSA or FSA plan details or talk with your provider about eligible expenses.

  • Buy with Purpose: Choose prescription eyeglasses, ensuring they meet medical necessity criteria.

  • Keep Records: Keep receipts, invoices, and your prescription for reimbursement purposes.

  • Stay Timely: Be aware of reimbursement deadlines.

  • Submit Claims: Either use your HSA or FSA debit card or submit a claim for eligible expenses.

Do I need a letter of medical necessity (LOMN) to use HSA/FSA to pay for eyeglasses?

A Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is a document written by a qualified healthcare professional that outlines the medical reasons why a specific treatment, service, or item is deemed necessary for an individual's health.

In most cases, a Letter of Medical Necessity (LOMN) is not necessary for using Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) funds to pay for eyeglasses. Typically, a valid prescription from a qualified eye care professional is sufficient. However, obtaining an LOMN can be a proactive step to ensure that you have comprehensive documentation, especially if your needs go beyond standard prescription lenses.

Why It’s So Much Better With Flex

For items not typically covered by your HSA or FSA, such as blue light glasses, Flex simplifies the process of purchase. Here how it works if you buy from a merchant who has partnered with us:

For pre-approved vision-related items, such as prescription glasses or contact lenses: Pay for the product or service with your HSA or FSA card. Flex substantiates the purchase automatically, meaning you don't need to submit for reimbursement.

If the item falls outside of standard IRS guidelines, like safety goggles or sport masks: Flex will check your eligibility for a Letter of Medical Necessity. When you go to checkout, a doctor’s appointment takes place: 

  • Fill out a short eligibility form, sharing relevant information with Flex’s medical team. 

  • If you qualify, Flex sends the LOMN to you via email.

  • Enter your HSA or FSA card details and complete the purchase. Again, no more need for reimbursements!

Clear Vision, Clear Savings

Using your Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account to cover the costs of your new prescription glasses is a good look for you and your wallet. 

In fact, because these accounts are tax-advantaged — meaning you don’t pay taxes for money you put in or take out — consumers, on average, save 30 to 40% percent on purchases they make with their HSA/FSA! If that caught your attention (we’re sure it did), you might want to check out what else you can use your HSA and FSA for.

When it comes to managing eye care expenses, read up, get your prescription, and get yourself a better perspective on life.

Flex is a modern marketplace for consumers to discover and purchase HSA/FSA eligible products. From fitness and nutrition, to sleep and mental health, Flex takes a holistic view of healthcare and enables consumers to use their pre-tax money to do the same.