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Financial Planning / HSA: Health Savings Accounts


Subject:  Comparison Charts Date:  6/12/2007  3:55 PM
Author:  saraswati1 Number:  10 of 19

I have tried to find comparison charts for different HSA's, rather than HSA's vs. other options, to no avail. If anyone has a link I would appreciate it.

I have a United Healthcare high deductible policy with an HSA through Exante Bank. I (and DH) am self-employed so the premium and my contribution to the HSA are automatically withdrawn from my checking account. I opened the account earlier this year. I must have $2000 in the HSA account in order to be able to invest $. Anything over that amount can be distributed to a choice of seven mutual and index funds. I will reach that amount next month.

First of all, if the powers-that-be want to promote HSA's then they need to gear it up. Easy access to comparison rates, investment vehicle choices, etc. would help the decision-making process. Second, I believe insurance agents are de-incentivized to promote HSA's because they receive lower fees. I just directly contacted an agent and told him the health plan I wanted and the HSA vehicle (for now.) Third, in this day of investment choices, surely one can be offered more than SEVEN choices. I know this situation is similar to the amount of choice offered by an employer for 401K plans. But if the idea of HSA's and 401K's is personal responsibility, perhaps we could expand that responsibility a LITTLE bit in the choices. And fourth, it would help the Exante website if they allowed for email contact, not only mail or telephone.

Also, it is disheartening to see articles about HSA's as a tax vehicle for the rich. Another example of our ironic bias against the rich. As the insured self-employed, we feel the bite most directly, even when relatively healthy. HSA's are a a backload situation with tax advantages for the purchaser, whereas traditional policies are frontload situation with a tax advantage for the purchaser. Whats the dif?

Maybe someone here knows more than I....


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