Use It or Lose It – Take Advantage of Insurance Benefits before the End of the Year

With the holidays quickly approaching, you are probably strapped for two things: time and money. Shopping, cooking, hosting and attending holiday events can zap your time and your finances.

Dr. Ricardo Hernandez of Pacific Beach Smile Studio is well aware of the stresses of this time of year. However, he would like to encourage you to carve out some time for dental treatment before December 31. If you have health insurance of any kind, you must take advantage of these benefits before 2016, or you will lose them. Missing out on valuable benefits can cost you money in the long run. Here, Dr. Hernandez explains why.

Spend Your Existing FSA Contributions

A flexible spending account (FSA) is an employer-sponsored pan in which you set aside pre-tax dollars for health-related expenses. One of the terms of these accounts is that you usually need to spend all the money in the account during the current year. Any funds remaining in the account at the end of 2015 will not roll over to 2016 (certain employers allow a grace period, but this is not standard).

You can use the money in your FSA on non-cosmetic dental work, such as an exam or a crown for a damaged tooth. If you already spent money out-of-pocket on qualifying dental expenses, you may be eligible for cash reimbursements from your FSA.

Don’t Wait Until Your Deductible Resets

With many traditional health insurance plans, the benefits do not kick in until you meet a certain out-of-pocket amount, known as your annual deductible. By the end of the year, it is possible that you have made progress on your deductible or even met it completely. If the latter scenario is true, you want to take advantage of your health benefits before your deductible resets at the beginning of 2016.

For example, imagine that you need dental treatment that costs $500. Your dental insurance covers 90 percent of the cost after you meet your deductible (which is also $500). If you wait until January, you will need to pay the full $500 for treatment to meet your deductible. But, if you have already met your 2015 deductible and you have treatment by the end of the year, your insurance will pay for 90 percent of the cost, leaving you responsible for only 10 percent ($50).

Note: please check with your individual plan administrator for the specific terms and conditions of your insurance.

Schedule Your Dental Appointment Today

If you’ve had high out-of-pocket health expenses this year, don’t lose valuable insurance benefits on your dental treatment. Call us today at 858-272-6047 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Hernandez before the end of the year.


4460 Olney Street

San Diego, CA 92109

(858) 272-6047

Call us today!

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