Tax breaks appealing; Health Savings Accounts rapidly gaining popularity (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
MILWAUKEE – Every time Kathleen Hirscher receives a bill for her health insurance, the premium is higher.
In response to this common problem, the 61-year-old retired nurse has been slowly raising her deductibles and co-pays. She and her husband Robert Hirscher, 71, a retired corporate controller, find appeal in the financial trade-off of a lower premium for a higher deductible.
Recently, that trade became even more appealing when the
HSAs became available Jan. 1 to many people with high-deductible health insurance policies. For federal tax purposes, money put into an HSA can be deducted from income taxes, accumulates earnings on a tax-deferred basis and is tax free on withdrawal if used to pay medical bills.
HSAs are becoming increasingly popular. To get the best deal, a consumer has to shop carefully. Furthermore, not every policy with the threshold $ 1,000 deductible qualifies, because it also must meet other technical requirements.
In addition, Robert Hirscher had a hard time finding anyone who sold the accounts to individuals.
“When I looked into getting an HSA, I got blank stares from everybody,” Robert Hirscher said. Eventually, he found the State Bank of Howards Grove, a
Almost every day, the Wisconsin institution is getting a new competitor in the market for individual HSAs, says Dan Perrin, executive director of the HSA Coalition in
AVRUM D. LANK firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyright 2004 The Houston Chronicle Publishing Company
The Houston Chronicle
August 16, 2004, Monday 2 STAR EDITION