Great news–perhaps the IRS really does care!!
While the Maryland legislature still has work to do to fix the “free vasectomies” insurance mandate for future years so as to not disqualify Health Savings Accounts-qualified High Deductible Health Plans, the IRS has granted retroactive relief for 2018 and for 2019 as well if needed. So employees and individuals can once again make pre-tax contributions to their HSAs for 2018 and contributions made earlier this year will not be subjected to penalties. Note—You must still have an otherwise HSA-qualified HDHP and the vasectomy clause must be the only reason for HSA disqualification. Following is an excerpt from the IRS.
The Treasury Department and the IRS are aware that certain states require benefits for male sterilization or male contraceptives to be provided without a deductible, and that individuals have enrolled in health insurance policies and other arrangements that otherwise would qualify as HDHPs with the understanding that coverage for male sterilization or male contraceptives without a deductible did not disqualify the policies or arrangements from being HDHPs. The Treasury Department and IRS also understand that certain states may wish to change their laws that require benefits for male sterilization or male contraceptives to be provided without a deductible in response to this notice, but may be unable to do so in 2018 because of limitations on their legislative calendars or for other reasons. Until these states are able to change their laws, residents of these states may be unable to purchase health insurance coverage that qualifies as an HDHP and would be unable to deduct contributions to an HSA.
Accordingly, this notice provides transition relief for periods before 2020 (including periods before the issuance of this notice), to individuals who are, have been, or become participants in or beneficiaries of a health insurance policy or arrangement that provides benefits for male sterilization or male contraceptives without a deductible, or with a deductible below the minimum deductible for an HDHP. For these periods, an individual will not be treated as failing to qualify as an eligible individual under section 223(c)(1) merely because the individual is covered by a health insurance policy or arrangement that fails to qualify as an HDHP under section 223(c)(2) solely because it provides (or provided) coverage for male sterilization or male contraceptives without a deductible, or with a deductible below the minimum deductible for an HDHP.
Have a question? Contact David Reumont.
Your comments are always welcome!