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PBS Progressive Benefit Solutions Welcome Connecticut employees





Our Education Center can assist you in a whole number of ways - by helping you better understand aspects of your benefits program and by helping you to determine how much you should contribute to cover expenses, how to calculate your estimated tax savings based upon pre-tax contributions.


And you can learn about how the Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card makes paying and tracking your expenses easy!

 

Flexible Spending Accounts -- MEDFLEX:

State of Connecticut
Medical Flexible Spending Account (MEDFLEX)
Plan Summary Fact Sheet

The State of Connecticut recognizes that even with our comprehensive medical and dental benefits, many of our employees still incur medical and dental care expenses that are not covered under the State's health plan. For this reason the Office of the State Comptroller, under the provisions of C.G.S. Section 5-264(d), makes the Medical Flexible Spending Account Program (MEDFLEX) available. The MEDFLEX provides a tax-free way for you to pay for out-of-pocket medical care expenses, which allows you to save money on the cost of these products and services. The State has teamed up with Progressive Benefit Solutions (PBS) to serve as the State's administrative services provider.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE MEDFLEX


ELIGIBILITY

The State of Connecticut MEDFLEX is available to active employees working at least half time (0.5 FTE – Full Time Equivalent). Expenses may be reimbursed for yourself, your spouse, your tax qualified dependent(s) and/or your tax qualified relative(s).

CONTRIBUTION ELECTION

For Plan Year 2016, contribution limits are between $520 and $2,600. Throughout the year, the amount chosen will be deducted evenly from your paychecks based on your pay frequency (ex. 26 pays, 24 pays, 12 pays).

ADVANTAGES OF THE MEDFLEX

The MEDFLEX is a valuable component of the State of Connecticut employee benefit program. Regulated by the IRS, this program allows you to set aside a portion of your income on a pre-tax basis to pay for eligible medical and dental care expenses that are not covered under the State of Connecticut health plans. In other words, the money you deposit into the MEDFLEX will never be taxed. That saves you money on every dollar you set aside. To estimate your tax savings based upon your participation see our FSA calculator at www.ctpbs.com

PROGRAM PARAMETERS

The MEDFLEX can be used to cover qualified medical care expenses defined by IRS Publication 502 as amounts paid for: (1) the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease or for the purpose of affecting any structure or function of the body; (2) expenses include payments for legal medical services rendered by physicians, surgeons, dentists, and other medical practitioners. They include the costs of equipment, supplies, and diagnostic devices needed for these purposes; (3) medical care expenses must be primarily to alleviate or prevent a physical or mental defect or illness and do not include expenses that are merely beneficial to general health, such as vitamins; (4) medical expenses include transportation amounts incurred primarily for and essential to medical care.

Out-of-pocket medical expenses may be reimbursed for the employee, a spouse and IRS eligible dependents so long as: (1) expenses are qualified under IRS Code Section 105 and 213; (2) all other sources of reimbursement are exhausted (ex. health insurance plan); (3) reimbursement will not be sought from any additional source and; (4) documentation to substantiate expenses must be maintained and submitted for verification.

Below is a link to a listing of Eligible & Ineligible over-the-counter and medical products and services and ineligible expenses. Expenses may require a Letter of Medical Necessity Form in order to be considered for reimbursement. Further information regarding eligible expenses is available through IRS Publication 502 and IRS Code Section 213.

ELIGIBLE & INELIGIBLE OTC EXPENSES

PROGRAM LIMITATIONS

Annual Enrollment

Pursuant to IRS guidelines, you are required to re-enroll each year during the annual open enrollment period to participate in the MEDFLEX. After the annual open enrollment period you can not make any changes to your MEDFLEX unless you have a qualifying family status change. You have 31 days from the effective date of your family status change to make changes to your MEDFLEX. In addition, any changes in election must be consistent with your family status changes, which include the following:

  • Marriage or divorce;
  • Birth or adoption of a child;
  • Death of a dependent or spouse;
  • A change in dependent eligibility requirements for health benefits (ex. loss of other coverage, meeting maximum age requirements, etc.)
  • A change in employment status for you, your spouse or your dependent (ex. loss, gain, full-time to part-time or vice versa);
  • A change in residence for you, your spouse or dependent;
  • A leave of absence taken by you or your spouse

If you are out on any leave of absence including worker’s compensation, you are not required to enroll during the open enrollment period. Upon return to work, you will have 31 days in which to enroll in MEDFLEX.

Termination

If you terminate employment or cease to be an eligible participant under the plan, your program participation will end. Any amounts taken after termination will be reimbursed on an after-tax basis. Expenses for services rendered after the termination date are ineligible for reimbursement.

Carry Over / Use It or Lose It

You can now carry over $500 in unspent MEDFLEX funds from one plan year to the next. This means that members with balances of $500 or less from the current Plan Year will have those funds available for eligible expenses during the new Plan Year. Unused current plan year funds over $500 as of March 31st, will be forfeited. If you do not elect to enroll on the MEDFLEX in the new Plan Year than any funds under $25 will be forfeited.

ENROLLMENT

To enroll or make a change in the MEDFLEX you must complete a MEDFLEX Enrollment/Change Form during the annual open enrollment period or within 31 days of a qualifying family status change. You may download the form directly from the OSC web site www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site www.ctpbs.com or contact PBS at 1-866-906-8023.

CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT

To facilitate reimbursement of qualified MEDFLEX expenses, participants have the option of electing a Prepaid Benefits Card issued by PBS through the Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card Program. If you choose to use the Prepaid Benefits Card, you must complete the Pre-paid Benefits Card Election section on the MEDFLEX Enrollment/Change Form. At the beginning of the plan year, your election amount will be automatically loaded to your card and is available for reimbursement. As you incur qualified medical and dental care expenses, your funds will be automatically withdrawn from your account with a swipe of the Pre-paid Benefits Card.

Only the cost of medical products and services allowed under the IRS Code Section 213 and the State of Connecticut MEDFLEX Plan Document are eligible for reimbursement. If these medical products and services include expenses that can be provided for both a medical and cosmetic, capital expenditure, personal, living and/or family purpose, a Medical Necessity Form Letter must be submitted along with your MEDFLEX Claim Reimbursement Form.

You may download a Medical Necessity Form Letter from the OSC web site at www.osc.state.ct.us, the PBS web site at www.ctpbs.com, or by contacting PBS at 1-866-906-8023.

Note that health care services must be "incurred" before you file a claim for reimbursement. IRS guidelines stipulate that "expenses are treated as having been incurred when the participant is provided with the medical care that gives rise to the medical expense and not when the patient is formally billed, charged for or pays for the medical care." The date of medical service must be within the plan year of participation. If expenses are for orthodontia, an orthodontia contract must be submitted with your first plan year claim. If your payment plan is monthly, you may submit a reimbursement request after each monthly payment is due. If your entire treatment is pre-paid, the amount will be pro-rated and reimbursed over the course of the orthodontia treatment.

You may use the Benny™ Prepaid MasterCard Card at qualifying medical merchant locations where a MASTERCARD™ credit card is accepted. The Benny Prepaid Benefits Card may only be used at those locations which have a health-care related merchant category code. Examples of qualified locations include those who use an Inventory Information Approval System (IIAS), such as: physician offices, pharmacies, dental offices, grocery and discount stores, hospitals and vision centers. Qualified locations who use an IIAS only allow the Card to purchase items identified as eligible expenses. If your purchase has both eligible and ineligible expenses, the location will only accept the Benny Card for the eligible expenses. Ineligible expenses must be paid via another method. You can not use your Prepaid Benny Card at locations that do not use an IIAS.

Regardless of the form of reimbursement (Prepaid Benefits Card or other form of payment) IRS provisions stipulate that all expenses be substantiated; however, many transactions are automatically substantiated by the card system using one of the below IRS-approved substantiation methods:

  • Recurring Expense – Recurring transactions will be processed and approved without recurring documentation after the initial transaction's substantiating receipts or other documentation have been reviewed and approved. Documentation requests will not be required so long as the subsequent recurring expense equals the same amount, duration and provider as the initial transaction.

  • Co-pay Matching – The expense specifically matches your health plan's co-pay. For example, if the healthcare provider office visit co-pay is $10 and your payment for the office visit was $10, a substantiating receipt may not be required.

  • IIAS Approved – Your FSA-eligible products are purchased at a location that uses the IIAS. In the unlikely event that your card payment is denied at a location that uses the IIAS, you will be required to submit substantiating documentation in order to received reimbursement.

If your expense is not automatically substantiated, PBS will request additional supporting documentation via an email or letter request.  Acceptable Supporting documentation includes:

  • An Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from the insurance carrier indicating the patient name, date of service, and out-of-pocket expenses associated with claim.

  • An itemized statement for expenses not covered by insurance.  The statement must include: (1) the patient’s name; (2) date of service; (3) description of procedure; (4) physician name and (5) the service charge.

  • Prescription Drugs – A statement from the pharmacy indicating: (1) pharmacy name; (2) patient name; (3) date of prescription fill; (4) patient cost (ex. co-pay); (5) Rx number and; (5) name of drug.

  • Eligible Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medications – After January 15, 2011, Health FSA Pre-Paid Benefit Cards can be used to purchase over-the-counter medicines or drugs at drug stores and pharmacies, at non-health care merchants that have pharmacies and at mail order and web-based vendors that sell prescription drugs, if: (1) prior to purchase, (i) the prescription (as defined in Notice 2010-59) for the over-the-counter medicine or drug is presented (in any format) to the pharmacist; (ii) the over-the-counter medicine or drug is dispensed by the pharmacist in accordance with applicable law and regulations pertaining to the practice of pharmacy; and (iii) an Rx number is assigned; (2) the pharmacy or other vendor retains a record of the Rx number, the name of the purchaser (or the name of the person for whom the prescription applies), and the date and amount of the purchase in a manner that meets IRS recordkeeping requirements1; (3) all of these records are available to the employer or its agent upon request; (4) the Pre-Paid Benefit Card system will not accept a charge for an over-the-counter medicine or drug unless an Rx number has been assigned; and (5) the requirements of the guidance defined by IRS are satisfied. If these requirements are met, the Pre-Paid Benefit Card transaction will be considered fully substantiated at the time and point-of-sale.
Over-the-Counter drugs and medicines not meeting the above requirements will require a Medical Necessity Form Letter to determine reimbursement eligibility. You may download a Medical Necessity Form Letter from the OSC web site, the PBS web site, or by contacting PBS at 1-866-906-8023. In order for your claim to be reimbursed you must retain copies of all itemized receipts for eligible expenses. It is recommended that all receipts be retained for at least 3 years after the close of the plan year in which the expense has been incurred. Keep in mind that IRS regulations stipulate that cancelled checks, balance forward statements, and credit card and/or cash receipts cannot be used to substantiate expenses (itemized cash register receipts are acceptable substantiation for eligible over-the-counter expenses not requiring a Letter of Medical Necessity Form).

Note that missing or lost receipts will result in a claim denial. If you are unable to secure a replacement receipt or use your Prepaid Benefits Card for expenses that are deemed ineligible, your claim will be denied and you will be required to reimburse the plan with post-tax dollars. If you fail to do so, your Benny Prepaid Card will be de-activated and/or the Administrator will offset the amount of the ineligible expense from your later substantiated claims until the full amount is repaid.

In those cases where you are unable to use your Prepaid Benefits Card or if you prefer the manual reimbursement method, you must first pay for your MEDFLEX expenses, then submit a Claim Reimbursement Form to PBS for processing. Claim Reimbursement Forms may be downloaded through the PBS web site and must be submitted directly to PBS for reimbursement by mail or through the use of the on-line facility at www.ctpbs.com. If you choose the manual reimbursement method, you may request your MEDFLEX reimbursements be paid via direct deposit. Simply access the PBS web site: www.ctpbs.com to enroll in this option.


ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE

To learn more of the specific requirements of the Medical Flexible Spending Account Program please access the OSC web site: www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site; www.ctpbs.com and click on the Education Center Box. You may also contact: PBS toll free at 1-866-906-8023 or by mail at 14 Business Park Drive #8, Branford, CT 06405.

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Flexible Spending Accounts -- Dependent Care (DCAP):

State of Connecticut
Dependent Care Assistance Program (DCAP)
Plan Summary Fact Sheet

The State of Connecticut recognizes that it has become increasingly difficult to pay for dependent care expenses while you are employed. It is for this reason that the Office of the State Comptroller (OSC), under the provisions of C.G.S. Section 5-264(b), makes the DCAP available to you. The DCAP is a flexible spending account (FSA) which offers significant tax advantages in helping you pay for qualified dependent care expenses. The State has teamed up with Progressive Benefit Solutions (PBS) to serve as the State’s third party administrator.

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE DCAP

ELIGIBILITY

The State of Connecticut DCAP is available to active employees working at least half time (0.5 FTE – Full Time Equivalent). Since the purpose of the DCAP is to help you pay for dependent care expenses while you work, for married individuals, your spouse must also work, be a full-time student or be disabled.

CONTRIBUTION ELECTION

If you are single or married and filing jointly, the maximum amount you can contribute annually is $5000. If you are married and filing separately, your maximum pre-tax amount will be $2,500.

The minimum amount you may contribute to the DCAP is $20 per pay period.

ADVANTAGES OF THE DCAP

The DCAP is a valuable component of the State of Connecticut employee benefit program. Regulated by the IRS, this program lets you pay for eligible dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars. In other words, the money you deposit into the DCAP will never be taxed. For every dollar set aside in DCAP you can reduce your child care expenses by as much as 30%. To estimate your tax savings see our FSA calculator at www.ctpbs.com

PROGRAM PARAMETERS

The DCAP can be used to cover expenses for a qualified dependent, defined as

    • Child(ren) under age 13 whom you are entitled to claim as dependents on your federal income tax return; and/or
    • Participant’s spouse or any dependent living in household who is physically and/or mentally incapable of self-care who spends at least eight hours a day in your home

Qualified dependent care expenses include:

    • Care at licensed nursery schools, day camps (not overnight camps) and child care centers which provide day care.
    • Services from individuals - other than you or your spouse’s dependent or children under age 19 who provide care in or outside your home.
    • Household services related to the care of your qualified dependent provided by a care provider who is responsible for the care of your qualified dependent.

Ineligible dependent care expenses include:

    • Care provided by your spouse, a child of yours younger than age 19 or by a dependent whom you claim as a dependent on your federal income tax return
    • Nursing home or custodial care
    • Overnight camps
    • Childcare expenses while you are not working
    • Schooling expenses for grades kindergarten and higher
    • Expenses claimed under the Dependent Care Tax Credit on your federal income tax return

PROGRAM LIMITATIONS

Annual Enrollment

Pursuant to IRS guidelines, you must re-enroll during the annual open enrollment period to participate in the DCAP for the upcoming year. After the annual open enrollment period you can not make any changes to your DCAP unless there is a qualifying family status change. You have 31 days from the effective date of your family status change to modify your DCAP. Such changes must be consistent with your changes in family status, such as:

  • Marriage or divorce;
  • Birth or adoption of a child;
  • Death of a dependent or spouse;
  • A child ceases to be an eligible dependent under the Plan; (to age 13)
  • The beginning or ending of your spouse’s employment;
  • A change from full-time to part-time employment, or vice versa, for you or your spouse
  • A leave of absence taken by you or your spouse; and
  • A significant change in cost or coverage to your Dependent Care Expense.

If you are out on any leave of absence, including worker’s compensation, during the open enrollment period you will have 31 days from your return to work to enroll in DCAP.

Termination

If you terminate employment or cease to be an eligible participant under the plan, your program participation will end. Any amounts taken after termination will be reimbursed on an after-tax basis. Expenses for services rendered after the termination date are ineligible for reimbursement.

Use It or Lose It

The IRS “Use It or Lose It” rule provides that any monies remaining in your DCAP account at the end of the Plan Year (December 31) will be forfeited unless you make a claim for reimbursement no later than March 31st.

ENROLLMENT

To enroll or make a change in the DCAP you must complete a DCAP Enrollment/Change Form during the annual open enrollment period or within 31 days of a qualifying family status change. If you are a current participant you will receive a notification and enrollment form in the mail before the end of the annual open enrollment period. You may also download the form directly from the OSC website: www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site www.ctpbs.com or contact PBS at 1-866-906-8023.

CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT

Claim Reimbursement Forms can be downloaded through the PBS web site and must be submitted directly to PBS for reimbursement by mail or through the use of the on-line facility at www.ctpbs.com. You must incur and pay for your dependent care expenses to your care provider before submitting a claim to PBS for reimbursement.

Since DCAP’s are regulated by the IRS, participants need to save all receipts and submit them to PBS to verify expenses.

DCAP funds become available as they are deducted from your paycheck and submitted to PBS.

You may choose to receive reimbursements by check or direct deposit. You will be reimbursed up to the amount in your DCAP account at the time of claim processing. If your claim exceeds the amount in your DCAP account, you will be reimbursed for the amount of your balance. As your account is replenished, reimbursements will be issued until your entire claim is paid out. The minimum amount that can be reimbursed at any given time is $20. Reimbursements are processed on a daily basis.

To request direct deposit of your DCAP, simply access the PBS web site: www.ctpbs.com to enroll in this option.

ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE

To learn more of the specific requirements of the Dependent Care Assistance Program please access the OSC web site: www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site; www.ctpbs.com and click on the Education Center Box. You may also contact: PBS toll free at 1-866-906-8023 or by mail at 14 Business Park Drive #8, Branford, CT 06405.

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State of Connecticut
Qualified Transportation Account (QTA)
Plan Summary Fact Sheet

NOTE: The Federal Government has the allowable QTA monthly Transportation election to $255.00/mo. The Parking election has also been adjusted to $255.00/mo.

The State of Connecticut recognizes that it has become increasingly difficult to pay for transit related expenses while you are a State employee. It is for this reason that the Office of the State Comptroller, under the provisions of C.G.S. Section 5-141(e), makes the QTA, formerly known as the Transportation Fringe Benefit Program, available to you. The QTA offers significant tax advantages in helping you pay for qualified commuter expenses. The State has teamed up with Progressive Benefit Solutions (PBS) to serve as the State’s third party administrator.



HIGHLIGHTS OF THE QTA

ELIGIBILITY

The State of Connecticut QTA is available to all full time active employees working at least half time (0.5 FTE – Full Time Equivalent) that commute to and from work using public transportation or incur parking expenses.

ADVANTAGES OF THE QTA

The QTA is a valuable component of the State of Connecticut employee benefit program. Regulated by the Internal Revenue Services (IRS), this program lets you pay for eligible transportation and parking expenses with pre-tax dollars. In other words, the money you deposit into the QTA will never be taxed. For every dollar you set aside you can reduce the cost of your transportation and parking expenses. To estimate your tax savings based upon your participation see our savings calculator at www.ctpbs.com.

PROGRAM PARAMETERS

The QTA, governed by Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 132, is a monthly benefit which enables pre-tax dollars to be used for eligible transit and parking expenses related to your regular daily direct commute from home to work and return via public transit and/or for your regular daily cost of parking on or near your work location.

The IRS sets the maximum limits on a yearly basis. For 2016, the monthly limits are:

  • Qualified Transit (passes, commuter highway vehicle, railroads, suburban & local commuter passenger expenses, including ferries, buses, and other transportation services) - $255.00/mo.

  • Qualified Parking (automobile parking lots & garages) - $255.00/mo.

  • Participation in both of these accounts is permitted; however, the funds cannot be transferred between accounts.

  • The minimum amount you may contribute to the QTA is $10 per pay period.

  • Note that expenses are limited to employee expenses only, spousal or dependent expenses are not allowed

Since the QTA is a monthly benefit, elections can be changed on a monthly basis and any unused monthly expenses may be carried over to the following months. It is important that participants ensure that their monthly deductions match their QTA expenses otherwise upon retirement or termination from employment any funds remaining in the account may become forfeited.

ENROLLMENT

To enroll or make a change to the QTA you must complete a QTA Compensation Reduction Agreement Form by the first day of the month before the one in which you wish to enroll or make a change. For example, if you want your enrollment or change to be effective for the month of October, your QTA Compensation Reduction Agreement Form must be received by September 1. You may also download the form directly from the OSC web site www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site www.ctpbs.com or contact PBS at 1-866-906-8023.

CLAIM REIMBURSEMENT

The claim submission deadline is 180 days from the date the expense is incurred.

To facilitate reimbursement of QTA expenses, participants have the option of electing a Prepaid Benefits Card issued by PBS through the Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card Program, to pay for qualified parking and transit expenses anywhere a MASTERCARD™ credit card is accepted. Your payroll deductions will be automatically loaded to your card and available for reimbursement based on your contribution elections. Through the use of the Prepaid Benefits Card, your funds will be automatically withdrawn from your account with the swipe of the card. You will be reimbursed up to the amount in your QTA at the time of card swipe. If your claim exceeds the amount in your QTA, you will need to submit a manual claim reimbursement request (detailed below).

The card contains separate fund reservoirs or “purses” for parking and/or transit expenses from which your incurred expenses will automatically be deducted for each account. IRS provisions for recurring expense processing requires that an initial claim be submitted and substantiated manually; after that subsequent transactions can be automatically substantiated without the need for submitting receipts.

If you choose to participate with the Prepaid Benefits Card, you must complete the Pre-paid Benefits Card Election section on the Compensation Reduction Agreement Form. Forms must be received by the first day of the month before you wish to participate with the card; otherwise card activation will begin during the next month.

If you are unable to use your Prepaid Benefits Card or if you chose not to participate with the Prepaid Benefits Card option, you must first pay for your QTA expenses, then submit a Claim Reimbursement Form to PBS for processing.

Claim Reimbursement Forms may be downloaded through the PBS web site and must be submitted directly to PBS by mail or through the use of the on-line facility at www.ctpbs.com. You will be reimbursed up to the amount in your QTA at the time of claim processing. If your claim exceeds the amount in your QTA, you will be reimbursed for the amount of your balance. As your account is replenished, reimbursements will be issued until your entire claim is paid out. The minimum amount that can be reimbursed at any given time is $20. Manual reimbursements are processed on a daily basis.

If you choose the manual reimbursement method, you may request your QTA reimbursements be paid via direct deposit into your account. Simply access the PBS web site: www.ctpbs.com to enroll in this option.

Since QTA’s are IRS regulated benefits, participants need to save all receipts in the event that PBS or the IRS requires verification of expenses.

ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE

To learn more of the specific requirements of the QTA, access the OSC web site: www.osc.state.ct.us or the PBS web site: www.ctpbs.com or contact Progressive Benefit Solutions (PBS) toll free at 1-866-906-8023.

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Qualified Transportation Account (QTA) FAQs
Questions on Qualified Transportation Accounts QTA

Questions on Qualified Transportation Accounts

  • What is a Qualified Transportation Account?

    A Qualified Transportation Account, also called a "QTA," is like a personal bank account in which you can set aside an amount of money on a tax-advantaged basis to cover qualified transportation and parking expenses incurred to and from your place of work. Within a QTA, there are two subcategories: a Mass Transit Account and a Parking Account.

  • How is a QTA funded?

    You contribute to a QTA through payroll deductions. Your deductions are made on a pre-tax basis, which means before taxes, FICA, and Medicare are taken out of your paycheck.

    For 2016, you may contribute on a pretax basis up to $255/month into the Mass Transit Account for qualified mass transit expenses, and $255 on a monthly basis to the Parking Account for qualified parking expenses (these limits are imposed by the IRS and are reviewed annually.) Money from the Parking Account cannot be used for Mass Transit expenses, and vice versa.

  • Can I participate in both accounts/categories?

    Yes, if you have qualified expenses in both categories.

  • Why should I participate in a QTA?

    You save money on expenses you would incur any way by contributing to the QTA monthly and on a pre-tax basis up to the IRS-imposed maximums of $255.00/mo. established by IRS into the Mass Transit Account and $255/month into the Parking Account. And the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card makes using the QTA simple!

    In one conservative example, let’s assume an individual in the 28% federal income tax bracket (assuming a $30,000 salary) pays $1,200 qualified transit and parking expenses out of a QTA – doing so would save the person $336 in taxes! Using the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card makes the QTA simple by accessing the funds automatically!

  • What transportation expenses may be reimbursed through a Mass Transit/Parking QTA?

    The IRS defines qualified transportation expenses as expenses that are necessary for you to travel to and from work, including parking, mass transit and commuter highway vehicles.

    Examples of qualified out-of-pocket transportation expenses that can be paid for with a QTA include:

    • Parking expenses for any type of vehicle on or near your work location
    • Parking on or near a location from which you commute using mass transit
    • Transit passes
    • Transit tokens
    • Transit Farecards
    • Transit vouchers

    You can use the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card for all these, thereby stretching your dollar and making it easy to do so!

  • What transportation expenses cannot be reimbursed through a QTA?

    Some examples of ineligible transportation expenses are:

    Carpooling with a neighbor
    Transportation and/or parking expenses to attend leisure events
    Expenses incurred by your spouse and/or dependents in connection with their commutes
    Tolls
    Mileage and gas expenses associated with going to and from work
    Always check your employer’s benefit plan materials.

  • Can I change my contribution amount during the year?

    Yes, since the QTA is a monthly election, you can change your amount or stop contributions at any time throughout the year. Retroactive changes are not allowed, only changes that will affect future months are allowed. Changes must be submitted the 1st of the month prior to the effective change month.

  • What happens if I don't use all the money in my QTA?

    Funds can be rolled over from month-to-month and to a new plan year, so check your employer’s benefit plan design.

    It’s important to note that Benny® allows for real-time access at transit and parking locations for amounts you’ve contributed to your QTA. So Benny® makes it easy to use your QTA and keep track of your balance. Go to the web site on the back of your card for more information and to check balances.

  • Can I still benefit from a QTA if I don't itemize deductions on my tax return?

    Yes. You don’t need to itemize deductions to take advantage of this benefit.

  • Can I deduct the expenses on my tax return that are reimbursed through a QTA?

    No. You cannot claim a tax deduction for the same expenses that are reimbursed tax-free through your QTA.  

  • When are funds available to me, and when can I start using my Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card?

    QTA funds are only available if they have been deducted from your payroll. For example, suppose you elect to contribute $50 per month and your employer deducts those funds in two equal installments over the first two pay periods of the month. After your first pay period, you would have only $25 of your $50 monthly election available. After your second pay period, an additional $25 would be available. Because of this rule, you cannot use the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card until you have "saved" enough money in your QTA to pay for the first expense you will incur.

  • What happens if the amount that I want to use in a month is higher than the IRS will allow?

    The IRS monthly limits govern contributions and payments that may be made with pre-tax dollars. You cannot use the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card for an amount greater than the monthly QTA limits:

    If you save up several months of contributions to purchase a multi-month (e.g. quarterly) transit or parking pass, that single transaction could exceed the dollar limit for the month. For example, you might wish to purchase a quarterly parking pass for $255. In that case, you would elect to contribute $85/month on a pre-tax basis. You would save three month's worth of contributions in your account and use them to purchase your parking pass for the following quarter. Since the amount of the transaction ($240) would be higher than the IRS monthly limit, you may be asked to send in a copy of your receipt to document that the pass being purchased covers more than one month.

  • What if I pay for eligible expense a month in advance?

    Many transit and parking passes are payable in advance. Simply save up one month’s worth of contributions into your QTA. Once you have saved enough, just use your Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card to pay for the next month’s pass. For example, you can purchase a transit pass for the month of March in late February, as long as there is enough money in your account to pay for the pass. Then, your March contributions into the account can be used near the end of the month to pay for your April pass, and so on.

  • What happens if a QTA expense is quarterly?

    Simply save up three months worth of contributions in your QTA, then begin paying on a regular basis each quarter. If the amount of the quarterly expense is higher than the IRS monthly limit, you may be asked to send in a copy of your receipt to document that the expense covers more than one month.

  • Will I ever need to submit a manual claim reimbursement request?

    You may need to submit a manual claim reimbursement request- along with the receipts – if:

    • You do not elect a Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card
    • Your transportation expense is incurred at a location that does not accept MasterCard®
    • You forget to take your Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card with you
    • Your transaction is denied for any reason

    Be sure to check your employer’s benefit plan design.

  • Where do I get a claim form?

    When using the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card, you usually don’t need a claim form. However, if for some reason you don’t use the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card, contact PBS at the phone number on the back of your Card or as identified below to obtain a claim form or online at www.ctbps.com.

    Call PBS at: Toll Free 1-866-906-8023 or locally at 203-985-1712.

  • What happens if I incur an expense and my QTA balance is less than the amount of the expense?

    If the amount of payment you seek to make using the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card is greater than your QTA balance, the card request will be denied. In this case, you will need to submit a manual claim reimbursement request.

  • Is there a certain period of time to make claims for eligible expenses?

    Per IRS guidelines, claim submission deadline is 180 days from the date the expense is incurred.

  • If I run out of money in my parking account, can I pay for additional parking expenses with money from my transportation account?

    No. The two funds are separate and you cannot transfer funds from one account to another.

  • If I stop participating, what happens to the money left in my account(s)?

    You can submit claims for expenses that were incurred while you were a participant. Claim submission deadline is 180 days from the date the expense is incurred. Any other funds will be forfeited upon termination from employment.

  • What happens if I terminate my employment?

    Upon employment termination you will have 180 days from the date the expense is incurred to file claims on the unused balance in your account. You may submit for reimbursement for services provided prior to the termination date. Any unused funds after the 180 day deadline will be returned to the employer. Per IRS guidelines, these funds are non-refundable to the employee.

  • Can I use this account to pay for my spouse's transportation and/or parking?

    No. The transportation benefit is only for the employee who works for the employer offering the QTA.

  • How do I know how much is in my account?

    You can visit your Account Summary page by clicking onto "PBS On-Line" from the PBS website www.ctpbs.com to review your account activity and current balance. Or, you can call PBS at 1-866-906-8023 to obtain your current balance. It's a good idea to know your account balance before you make a purchase with the Benny® Prepaid Benefits Card.

    Enrolling in QTA

  • How do I enroll in a QTA?

    Just complete the Enrollment Form provided by PBS and indicate the amount you want deducted from each paycheck for each account – parking and/or transportation. Forms are available on the State of Connecticut PBS website for downloading at www.ctpbs.com for your convenience.

  • When can I enroll in a QTA?

    You may be able to enroll in the QTA at any time during the year. In order to enroll with the QTA you must complete a QTA Compensation Reduction Agreement Form by the first of the previous month in which you wish to enroll. For example, if you want your enrollment to be effective for the month of October 2013, your QTA Compensation Reduction Agreement Form must be received by September 1, 2013.

    State of CT MEDFLEX & DCAP

    Questions on Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA-MEDFLEX & DCAP)
    Enrolling in MEDFLEX or DCAP

    Top

    Questions on Flexible Spending Accounts

  • What is a Flexible Spending Account (MEDFLEX / DCAP)?
  • The Flexible Spending Accounts MEDFLEX and DCAP programs offered by the State of Connecticut a is like a personal bank account in which you can set aside an amount of money on a pre-tax basis to cover qualified medical expenses that are not covered by your benefit plan and for valid dependent care.

    Top

  • How is an FSA funded?

    You contribute to an FSA through payroll deductions. Your deductions are made on a pre-tax basis, which means before income taxes, FICA (Social Security). This lowers the amount of taxes you pay.

    Top

  • Why should I participate in an MEDFLEX / DCAP?

    Basically, if you want to save money on your out-of-pocket medical and dependent care expenses you should seriously consider participating in an FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP program as appropriate. Since your contributions are made on a pre-tax basis your taxable income is reduced by the amount you contribute, and that lowers the amount of taxes you pay. For example, an individual in the 28% federal income tax bracket who pays $2,000 in qualified dependent care expenses out of an FSA-DCAP would save $560 in taxes!.

    Top

  • Can I change my contribution amount during the year?

    Yes, but only under certain circumstances. The IRS regulations allow you to change your election within thirty days of a change in "family status." Family status changes include marriage, divorce, death of spouse or child, birth or adoption of child, and termination of employment of spouse. Always check your employer's benefit plan materials regarding changes.

    Top

  • What happens if I don't use all the money in my account?

    You have until March 31 of the year following the plan year to submit expenses for qualified expenses incurred prior to December 31 of the plan year. Any balance which remains after March 31 is forfeited.

    Top

  • What happens if I have an expense at the end of the year and don't submit it by the end of the plan year?

    You will have time after the end of the plan year to file claims for qualified expenses that you incurred on or before the end of the plan year. The deadline for submitting claims is usually three months following the end of the plan year. Always check your employer's benefit plan materials or call PBS at 1-866-906-8023.

    Top

  • Can I still benefit from an FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP if I don't itemize deductions on my tax return?

    Yes. You don't need to itemize deductions to take advantage of this benefit.

    Top

  • Can I deduct the expenses on my tax return that are reimbursed through the FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP?

    No. You cannot claim a tax deduction for the same expenses that are reimbursed tax-free through your FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP.

    Top

  • If I become disabled and am only working part-time, can I adjust my pre-tax account contributions?

    Yes. This constitutes a family status change. Always check your employer's benefit plan materials.

    Top

  • Where do I get a claim form

    Contact PBS at 1-866-906-8023 or by accessing the PBS website www.ctpbs.com to obtain a claim form.

    Top

  • How much money can I set aside in my account?

    The maximum pre-tax amount you can contribute annually is between $520.00 and 1500.00 for MEDFLEX Program and $5,000.00 for DCAP if you are single or married and filing a joint income tax return. If you are married and filing an individual tax return your maximum pre-tax amount for DCAP is $2,500. The minimum amount you may contribute to either MEDFLEX or DCAP is @20. per pay period

    Top

  • Enrolling in FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP

  • How do I enroll in an MEDFLEX or DCAP?

    Just complete the Enrollment Form provided for each plan and indicate the amount you want deducted from each paycheck.

  • When can I enroll in an FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP?

    You can enroll in the FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP during your employer's annual open enrollment or during the plan year, if you experience a family status change. But remember, if you are eligible for the FSA-MEDFLEX or DCAP during open enrollment and you choose not to participate, you will not be eligible to participate in either program until the next open enrollment unless you have a family status change. Always check your employer's benefit plan materials.





    General Card FAQs
    General Questions on The Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card
    Getting Started and Activating your Card
    Using The Card

    General Questions on The Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card

    • What is the Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card?

      The Benny™ Prepaid Benefits Card is a special-purpose MasterCard® that gives you an easy, automatic way to pay for qualified MEDFLEX and Mass Transit and Parking expenses. The Card lets you electronically access the pre-tax amounts set aside in your respective MEDFLEX and Mass Transit and/or Parking program.

    • How does the Prepaid Benefits Card work?

      It works like a MasterCard® Card with the value of your account(s) contribution stored on it. When you have qualified eligible expenses at a business that accepts MasterCard® credit cards simply use your Card. The amount of your qualified purchases will be deducted - automatically - from your account and the pre-tax dollars will be electronically transferred to the provider/merchant for immediate payment.

    • How does the Prepaid Benefits Card change how I am reimbursed for expenses?

      Before the Prepaid Benefits Card became available, you were required to first make a contribution from your paycheck into MEDFLEX or QTA account. You then had to pay for your eligible expenses at the time of purchase, submit claim forms along with all receipts, and then wait for the reimbursement to be processed. A check was issued and mailed to you and then you cashed the check. In essence, you paid twice - through payroll deduction and then at the point of service. Then you had to wait for reimbursement.

      With the Prepaid Benefits Card, you simply swipe the Card and the funds are automatically deducted from your respective employee benefit account(s) for payment. The Card eliminates most out-of-pocket cash outlays and paperwork, as well as the need to wait for reimbursement checks.

    • Is the Prepaid Benefits Card just like other MasterCard®?

      No. The Prepaid Benefits Card is a special-purpose MasterCard® that can be used only for qualified expenses. It cannot be used, for instance, at gas stations or restaurants. There are no monthly bills and no interest.

    • How many Prepaid Benefits Cards will I receive?

      You’ll receive two cards for the MEDFLEX Program and/or the Qualified Transportation Account. If you participant in both programs, the same card will be used for both plans.

    • Do I need a new Prepaid Benefits Card each year?

      As long as the respective employee benefit account(s) remain part of your benefit plan and you elect to participate each year, your Prepaid Benefits Card will be loaded with your new annual election amount at the start of each plan year for MEDFLEX or incrementally with each pay period (for DCAP or QTA), based on the type of account(s) you have.

    • What if my Prepaid Benefits Card is lost or stolen?

      Call your Plan Administrator to report your card lost or stolen as soon as you realize it is missing, so the Administrator can turn off your current card(s) and issue replacement card(s). A small replacement card fee will apply.

    • Can I use my Prepaid Benefits Card for OTC Medications?

      After January 15, 2011, health FSA and HRA PrePaid Benefits Cards may continue to be used to purchase over-the-counter medicines or drugs at drug stores and pharmacies, at non-health care merchants that have pharmacies and at mail order and web-based vendors that sell prescription drugs, if: (1) prior to purchase, (i) the prescription (as defined in Notice 2010-59) for the over-the-counter medicine or drug is presented (in any format) to the pharmacist; (ii) the over-the-counter medicine or drug is dispensed by the pharmacist in accordance with applicable law and regulations pertaining to the practice of pharmacy; and (iii) an Rx number is assigned; (2) the pharmacy or other vendor retains a record of the Rx number, the name of the purchaser (or the name of the person for whom the prescription applies), and the date and amount of the purchase in a manner that meets IRS recordkeeping requirements1; (3) all of these records are available to the employer or its agent upon request; (4) the PrePaid Benefits Card system will not accept a charge for an over-the-counter medicine or drug unless an Rx number has been assigned; and (5) the requirements of the guidance defined by IRS are satisfied . If these requirements are met, the PrePaid Benefits Card transaction will be considered fully substantiated at the time and point-of-sale.

    Activating Your Card

    • How do I activate the Card?

      Call the toll free number on the activation sticker on the front of your card or visit the website on the back of your card.

      You can use the Card once activated. Wait 1 business day after activation to use your card. The card holder should sign the card with his or her own name.

    • What dollar amount is on my Prepaid Benefits Card when I activate it?

      The MEDFLEX accounts are funded based on the amount you elect at the beginning of the plan year and the transportation accounts (QTAs), are funded incrementally at each pay period, so it is especially important to be aware of account balances in order to avoid declines at the time used.

    Using The Card

    • Where can I use my Prepaid Benefits Card?

      Your Prepaid Benefits Card can be used to pay for MEDFLEX and Mass Transit and Parking services at locations that accepts MasterCard®.

    • Are there places the Prepaid Benefits Card won’t be accepted?

      Yes. Your card will not be accepted at locations not related to Medical or Mass Transit and Parking expenses such as hardware stores, restaurants, bookstores, gas stations and home improvement stores.

    • If asked, should I select "Debit" or "Credit"?

      The Card is actually a prepaid Card. But, since there is no "prepaid" selection available, you’ll select "Credit". You do not need a PIN and you cannot get cash with the Prepaid Benefits Card.

    • Why do I need to save all of my itemized receipts?

      You should always save itemized receipts for all MEDFLEX, Mass Transit and Parking related expenses paid with the Prepaid Benefits Card. You may be asked to submit receipts to verify that your expenses comply with IRS guidelines. Each receipt must show: the name, the service received, the date, and the amount of the purchase.

    • What if I lose my receipts or I accidentally swipe the Card for something that’s not eligible?

      In the event that a receipt cannot be located, recreated, or if the expense is ineligible for reimbursement, you can send a check or money order to PBS for the amount so it can be credited back to your benefit account.

    • How do I know how much is in my account?

      You can visit your Account Summary page by clicking onto "PBS On-Line" on the PBS website www.ctpbs.com and view your account activity and current balance. Or, you can call PBS to obtain your current balance. You should always know your account balance before you make a purchase with the Card.

      Call PBS at: Toll Free 1-866-906-8023 or locally at 203-985-1712

    • What if I have an expense that is more than the amount left in my account?

      By checking your account balance often – either online or by calling your Plan Administrator at the phone number shown on the back of your Card – you will have a good idea of how much is available. When incurring an expense that is greater than the amount remaining in your account, you may be able to split the cost at the register. (Check with the merchant.) For example, you may tell the clerk you wish to use the Card for the exact amount left in your account, and then pay the remaining balance separately. Alternatively, you may pay by another means and submit the qualified transaction manually via a claim form with the appropriate documentation to your Plan Administrator.

    • What are some reasons my Prepaid Benefits Card might not work at point of service?

      The most common reasons why your card may be declined at the point of service are:

      • Your Card has not been activated
      • You used your Card before the 1 business day period after activation
      • You have insufficient funds in your respective employee benefit account to cover the expense.
      • You’ve included non-qualified expenses at the point of service (retry the transaction with the qualified expense only).
      • The merchant is encountering problems (e.g. coding or swipe box issues)

    • Am I responsible for charges on lost or stolen Prepaid Benefit Cards?

      If the Plan Administrator and the issuing bank are notified within 2 business days, you will not be responsible for any charges. If the notification is after 2 days, you may be responsible for the first $50 or more. A small replacement card fee will apply.

    • Whom do I call if I have questions about my Prepaid Benefits Card?

      Call PBS at: Toll Free 1-866-906-8023 or locally at 203-985-1712

    • How will I know to submit receipts to verify a charge?

      You will receive a letter or notification from PBS if there is a need to submit a receipt. All receipts should be saved per the IRS regulations.

    • What if I fail to submit receipts to verify a charge?

      If receipts are not submitted as requested to verify a charge made with the Prepaid Benefits Card, then the Card may be suspended until receipts are received. You may be required to repay the amount charged. PBS will advise you that the Card has been suspended, if a receipt is not received. Submitting a receipt or repaying the amount in question will allow the Card to be reactivated.

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