The University of Iowa partners with HealthEquity to offer benefit-eligible faculty and staff the opportunity to lower their taxable income and pay for qualified health care and/or dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars using a Flexible Spending Account (FSA).

Program Overview

An employee may choose to contribute to one or both of these accounts. Employees may also contribute unused benefit credits and/or pre-tax dollars to your FSA(s) through payroll deductions. Unused benefit credits automatically default into a Health Care FSA or can be designated to a Dependent Care FSA through enrollment in Employee Self Service.

Employees who incur qualified expenses may claim amounts up to their total annual healthcare contribution from their Health Care FSA at any time during the year. However, when requesting reimbursement, a participant may only receive reimbursement up to the amount available or contributed at that time in their Dependent Care FSA. 

Health Care FSA

2024 Contribution Limit - $3,050

A health care FSA may be used to pay for any expenses connected with health/dental care for you, your spouse, or any eligible dependent as defined by the IRS. 

Illustration of a person with a stethoscope

Examples of eligible expenses may include health plan deductibles, copayments, coinsurance, eye exams, and more.

This program cannot reimburse expenses for a domestic partner who is not a qualified tax dependent. Expenses for children may continue to be submitted through Dec. 31 of the year they turn 26.

Dependent Care FSA

Contribution Limit - $5,000 per household

The dependent care flexible spending account allows for tax-free reimbursement of eligible care of a qualified individual.

Expenses claimed must be for care required so that an eligible employee (and spouse, if applicable) can work, look for work, or attend school full-time.

two adults with a child standing in front of them.

Qualified individuals include a dependent child(ren) under the age of 13 claimed on your federal tax return,
a spouse, or other tax dependents who is physically or mentally incapable of self-care.

Please note that HealthEquity has its own approved eligible expenses list.

Cheat sheets text

How to Set up Your HealthEquity Member Profile

  1. Log in to Employee Self Service and then single sign-on(SSO) for the HealthEquity site.

    • Visit Employee Self Service, and log in with your hawkID and password.
    • Once logged in, select the "Benefits & Wellness" button.
    • Under Flex Spending, select the link: "New for 2023! HealthEquity Health and Dependent Care FSA."
    • Enter your hawkID and password again and complete your Duo Authentication when prompted.
  2. Start reviewing your account info with HealthEquity.

    • After your duo verification, the next screen will be your HealthEquity portal home page.
    • Navigate to the upper right of the screen, where you will see your name and initials. Select the circle, and choose the "Profile" link.
    • A "Modify profile" pop-up box will appear. Select one or the only link listed.
  3. Review and modify your profile preferences.
    • CONTACT INFORMATION: Verify your contact info is correct. If the address is wrong, log in to Employee Self Service and update there first.
    • PREFERENCES: Default communication is by mail. Choose other delivery methods, such as email or text messages, here.
    • REIMBURSEMENT METHOD: The default is to receive a paper check in the mail. If you prefer direct deposit to your bank, you must add your banking information.
    • AUTHORIZED INDIVIDUALS: Optional - add or remove individuals (e.g., spouse/partner, child, parent) who can contact HealthEquity on your behalf. 
    • USERNAME & PASSWORD: Only required if you plan to use the mobile app to submit claims. You will need to set this up before you use the app.
  4. If you have a health care FSA, review the Card Center link.
    • You are not required to use this Visa card. You may securely dispose of it or never activate it if you wish to submit your claims online or through another device.
    • This Visa card is another way to pay for eligible medical expenses.
    • From the Card Center, you may check your Visa card balance, review account activity, learn how to use the card, order a card for your dependent (spouse/child), and more.
  5. Prepare to submit your first claim.
    Before you begin, ensure you have all the appropriate documentation to submit a claim (i.e., EOB, receipt.) 
    • There are multiple ways to submit claims for reimbursement:
      • Pay using your HealthEquity Visa card (Healthcare FSA only). It may require the submission of additional information.
      • Submit online through your member portal.
      • Mail or fax your claims to HealthEquity.
      • Use the EZ Receipts mobile app.

Printable PDF version: How to set up your HealthEquity profile (pdf)

How to Submit a Claim

There are three main ways to submit a claim to HealthEquity, your member portal, EZ Receipts mobile app, and mail or fax. 

First, log in to the appropriate application through which you wish to submit your claims (even if you mail or fax your claims, you need to download a form from your member portal), either the HealthEquity member portal through Employee Self Service or your EZ Receipts mobile app on your smartphone. To review step-by-step instructions on how to log in to your member portal, please review the accordion item above. 

Through Your Member Portal

  • Reimburse Me
    1. If you have 2 accounts, select either Healthcare or Dependent care.
    2. Select "Next" after reading the instructions.
    3. Fill out your claim information: provider, service start/end date, and any remaining fields that require information.
    4. Select "Next - No More Items for This Receipt" on the next screen, verify info is correct, and select "Submit Claim." Follow the prompts to attach documentation if needed.
  • Pay Provider
    1. If you have two accounts, select either the Healthcare or Dependent care link.
    2. Select either "Make One-Time Payment" or "Make Recurring Monthly Payments."
    3. Enter the service start/end date, and select the "Next" button.
    4. Enter Claim information, and select "Next."
    5. Select "existing" or "add a new provider." Enter information and select "Next."
    6. Review the information. If correct, select "Submit Claim," and continue to complete your claim. 

EZ Receipts Mobile App

  1. Download and log in to the EZ Receipts app using the username/password you created.
  2. Choose the receipt type from the menu.
  3. Enter basic information about the claim or healthcare Card transaction.
  4. You can use your mobile device camera to capture the documentation.
  5. Submit the image and details to HealthEquity.

Paper Claims by Fax or Mail

If you prefer to submit a claim by fax or mail, download a "Pay Me Back" claim form from your HealthEquity member portal. Under the "General Forms" link. Follow the instructions for submission. 

  • Fax number - 877-353-9236
  • US Mail Address: Claims Administrator, PO Box 14053, Lexington, KY 40512

Printable PDF version: How to submit an FSA claim (pdf)

To authorize HealthEquity to deposit your FSA payments directly into a bank account, you must set up direct deposit. This can be set up as you register for your HealthEquity Member Portal at or at a later time.

Direct deposit should be set up before submitting your first claim to receive reimbursement as quickly as possible. If direct deposit is not set up before your first claim, payment will be made to you by paper check to the home address we have on file for you, and it may take up to three weeks to receive payment.

1. Log into your HealthEquity Portal
2. Select Profile, the applicable program, then Reimbursement Method
3. Provide the following information:

  • Name of your banking institution
  • Account and Routing Number as shown on your checks 
  • Confirmed email address 

4. A Pre-Note process will confirm your account and routing number
5. Direct deposit will be set up in approximately 7-10 business days

If you have any setup issues, don't hesitate to contact HealthEquity member services at 877-924-3967.

FSA Program Enrollment

Who is eligible?

Both eligible groups must be paid monthly and receive income subject to state and federal tax withholding.  

  1. Benefit-eligible faculty and staff 
  2. Benefit-eligible employed graduate students or postdoctoral scholars

Before Enrolling

Determine the annual contribution you want to make to an FSA account. These accounts are subject to the IRS "use or lose it" rule. Contribute only the amount you are reasonably sure you will spend on qualified expenses annually.

Your annual contribution is split into equal amounts over 12 paychecks. If you enroll mid-year, deductions will be equally split among the remaining paychecks of the year. The online enrollment system only allows you to enter the maximum monthly amount based on 12 months. If you are enrolling mid-year and want to contribute more than the system allows, please contact University Benefits by email at All expenses must be incurred by Dec. 31 of the plan year. The remaining funds will be forfeited.

Effective Date

The eligibility period begins the first of the month following your enrollment or change in benefits. Reimbursements can only be processed for expenses incurred on or after your effective date through the end of the applicable plan year. 

When to Enroll

When hired into a benefit-eligible position, eligible employees can enroll in the FSA program through their new-hire enrollment process. Enrollment must be completed within 30 days of hire or newly eligible date.

You cannot enroll, change, or cancel your contribution amount during the year unless you experience a qualifying event. The change must be consistent with the qualifying event. The employee may also enroll during the annual benefits open enrollment period, with elections effective the first of the following year. 

Complete your enrollment

Once you have determined your annual contribution amount, you must complete your benefits new hire enrollment event through Employee Self Service.

Employed graduate students and postdoc scholars should use the Salary Reduction Agreement for Spending Accounts form (pdf) to complete their enrollment and submit their completed forms to within the first 30 days of eligible employment.

Must re-enroll every year

FSAs are an IRS-regulated benefit, and your FSA enrollment does not carry over from year to year. If you participate in the FSA program through pre-tax salary contributions, you must re-enroll each year during open enrollment to continue participating for the following tax year. 

Unused general and shared savings credits will automatically default to a Health Care FSA. Employees who waive health insurance must still complete their annual open enrollment event and answer the minimum value coverage question within the enrollment event. 

What to expect after enrollment

A new plan participant will receive communications from HealthEquity to their residing address. 

  • All FSA participants will receive a Quick Start Guide with instructions for accessing and managing their participant accounts.
  • Health Care FSA plan participants will only receive a separate mailing with their HealthEquity Visa debit card to begin using as soon as the participant activates it.

These mailings will be sent to the participant's residing address on file with University Benefits. Employees should ensure their address is up-to-date in Employee Self-Service.

2024 HealthEquity Holiday Schedule
(Offices are closed on these days.)

  • Veterans Day - Nov. 10
  • Thanksgiving Day, Day After - Nov. 23 & Nov. 24
  • Christmas Eve -  Dec. 22
  • Christmas Day -  Dec. 25
  • New Year's Eve - Dec. 29

HealthEquity Information

Who is HealthEquity?

HealthEquity is a nationwide leader providing Flexible Spending Account (FSA) administrative services. HealthEquity combines intuitive technology and remarkable service, allowing the University to simplify the FSA experience and empower our employees to achieve more. 

Note – In 2019, HealthEquity acquired WageWorks. There are some areas on the HealthEquity website and documents that mention WageWorks. We have partnered with HealthEquity, so references to WageWorks can be disregarded.

What they offer our plan participants:

  • Online participant portal for easy account management
  • Faster reimbursement
  • 24/7-member service support
  • HealthEquity FSA debit card to use for eligible health care expenses
  • Flexible claims submission and reimbursement tools: electronic and paper options
  • A mobile app to use while on the go
  • Resources (e.g., webinars, videos, FSA calculator) at your fingertips

Who does what?

  University Benefits Office HealthEquity
Processing Claims/Paying reimbursements N/A HealthEquity will process all health care and dependent care claims incurred on and after Jan. 1, 2023. Your account(s) and reimbursements will come from HealthEquity. 
Questions about Claims N/A Call, email, or online chat with HealthEquity for claims questions.
Enrollment into Program University Benefits will handle all enrollments (new hires and open enrollment) and changes due to a qualifying event. University Benefits will provide enrollment information regularly to HealthEquity.  HealthEquity will set up new enrollees' portal accounts, send quick start guides, and health care debit cards based on enrollment information provided by University Benefits. 

From HealthEquity:

We are committed to protecting the privacy of your personal information. Our policies and notices provide a clear explanation of how we collect, use, disclose, transfer, and store your information.

  • We are secure. We use up-to-date administrative, physical, and technical safeguards to protect personal information.

  • We are transparent. We keep you informed regarding how we collect, use, and share personal information.

  • We are ethical. We only use personal information to provide our services.

  • We are accountable. Our team members and business partners are trained and accountable for complying with our privacy policies and standards.

To access the HealthEquity privacy policy, visit the HealthEquity Privacy page: 

HealthEquity FAQs

How and where to use my healthcare debit card?

Account cards must be activated before use. Please follow the instructions in the mailer received with your card to complete the activation process.

  • Once activated, use your card like a regular credit card to pay for your plan-allowed expenses. Cards must be run as 'credit' (card may be declined if run as debit), and no personal identification number (PIN) is required. 
  • Cards cannot be used at an ATM.
  • You can only spend what is available in your account; no overdraft is available. 
    • When the card is used for eligible expenses, funds are immediately deducted from the employee's healthcare spending account balance to pay for the purchase.

Where you can use your card: 

Through proprietary technology, HealthEquity analyzes each transaction and adjudicates eligibility in compliance with IRS regulations. If a transaction is not automatically verified at checkout or by a third-party system, the participant will be notified by HealthEquity with instructions to verify the transaction. 

  • Best places to use your card: Big Box, Pharmacy, and Grocery Store Chains (e.g., Target, Walmart, Walgreens, CVS). These merchants use a particular card system to ensure only eligible products and services are paid using your card. When you use your card there, no receipt will be requested. 
  • Good places to use your card: Health care providers and Speciality Pharmacies (e.g., Doctors, dentists, vision providers, and local drug stores). These provide eligible and ineligible services and do not use a particular card system. You may or may not need to submit a receipt to verify your card transaction when you use your card there.
  • Not good places to use your card: All other merchants. These are not recognized by the card network as providing eligible products and services. When you use your card there, your card will be denied.

Can I order a second card for my spouse or family member? 

Yes. Once you have completed your account set-up within the HealthEquity member portal, you may request an additional card to be sent to your home. 

  • Follow these steps in your member portal. All cards are mailed to the primary account holder's address.
    • In the 'My Account' tab of the HealthEquity member portal, select 'Manage Cards' 
    • Find the appropriate dependent in the list.
    • Select 'Request New Card' for that dependent.
    • Confirm the primary account address and select 'Order Card.' 
    • You will receive an email when the order has been processed. Your card should arrive up to 10 days after the order.

I do not want this card. Do I have to use it to receive reimbursement?

A card is automatically generated for every member enrolled in a health care FSA. 

  • You DO NOT have to use the card to receive reimbursement from your health care account.
  • You do not have to activate the card; if you so wish, you may securely dispose of the card. 

My debit card was lost, stolen, or never received.

If your card was lost and you need to order a replacement card for you or one of your dependents:

  • log in to your member portal, then from the 'My Account' tab, select 'Manage Cards,' then select 'Request Replacement Card' and follow the remaining prompts. 
  • You will receive an email when the order has been processed. New or replacement cards may take up to 10 days to arrive after the order date and will always be sent to the account holder's address.

If your card was stolen:

  • If you know your card was stolen, you may call HealthEquity Member Services at 866-346-5800 and request that your card be deactivated, and a new one be sent out to your home address. 

If you never received your card:

  • Verify the correct address is listed for you in your Member Portal. 
    • If the portal shows an incorrect address, the employee must log in to Employee Self Service >> My Self Service >> Address/Phone Change to complete their updates. The University Benefits Office will send any changes to HealthEquity on our enrollment file. The entire process can take up to 10-15 business days. 
    • If your address is correct in the member portal, please call HealthEquity Member Services at 866-346-5800. 

If you see transactions on your HealthEquity Visa health account card that you did not make, you can dispute them by contacting Member Services, who are available 24/7 for our plan members.

  • The transaction must be disputed within 90 days.
  • Only the account holder can dispute charges. 

Why was my card declined?

If your card was declined at the point of sale, it might be for one of the following reasons:

  • Ineligible merchant or provider (not coded as a provider of medical products/services)
  • The card used at an ATM or with cashback selected
  • Expenses larger than the current account balance
  • Card not activated or expired
  • The card is frozen due to fraud watch or inactivity
  • You are terminated from the University of Iowa. The debit card will shut off just after a participant's termination date. You can still be reimbursed for expenses incurred through that month of termination, but you will no longer be able to use the debit card. 

You can learn more about the reason for the card decline by contacting HealthEquity's Member Services (866-346-5800). You may still complete the purchase by paying out-of-pocket and reimbursing yourself if the expense is eligible under the plan.

Generally, claims are processed within two business days of receipt. The claims approval process verifies acceptable service dates, funds availability, IRS eligibility, and submission of supporting documentation.

If a claim is approved, no additional documentation is required, and it will be processed for payment. If direct deposit has been set up, the direct deposit should be posted within two (2) business days of receiving notice of payment from HealthEquity. This process, from claim submission to payment posted with your bank, is approximately 7-8 business days. Please work with your bank if you are anticipating a payment and it has taken longer than eight (8) business days to post. 

If a claim is denied, it will be clearly marked with the rejection reason, and you will be notified. Information for denied claims can be found on your HealthEquity participant portal under Claims & Activity.

If you pay for your eligible health care expenses with your card, you do not need to file claims but be sure to save your receipts. Most card transactions can be auto-substantiated, but HealthEquity may contact you to provide documentation. If the documentation for a card transaction is required:

  • You will receive a notice via email or mail with a "card use verification" form.
  • You will see a pop-up reminder upon login to the participant portal and additional red indicators on your portal showing an issue to be addressed. 

Medical –

Dependent Care -

Please note some expenses may require additional or different information submitted for reimbursement. For example, a letter of medical necessity will be required to be reimbursed for massage therapy. 

When an employee is terminated from the University, HealthEquity will shut off the Visa debit card on the participant's termination date. The participant can still be reimbursed for expenses incurred through the end of the month of termination, but they cannot use the debit card after the termination date.