What Happens to Your Flexible Spending Account When You Quit

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By Kimberly Lankford

Q. I'm leaving my job in the middle of the year and will have spent more from my flexible spending account than the amount I will have contributed by then. Do I need to pay back the extra money? --M.F., Coal Valley, Ill.

A. One special benefit of flexible spending accounts is that you can use all of the money you plan to contribute for the year starting on Jan. 1. Even if you leave your job before contributing that much, you generally don't need to pay back the extra money you spent, says Jody Dietel, chief compliance officer for WageWorks, which administers FSAs for employers.

In rare cases, the plan documents specify that any remaining contributions must be taken from your last paycheck when you leave your job, says Dietel. Ask your employer about its rules.

Got a question? Ask Kim at askkim@kiplinger.com.
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