In order for Massage Therapy to be considered a qualified medical expense, it MUST be used primarily to ease or prevent a physical or mental ailment. Examples of this may be (but not limited to): pain management, anxiety, depression, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, back pain, stress, arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, carpal tunnel syndrome. Here’s the fine print: IRS publication 502, under the heading “What are Medical Expenses” says: “…Medical care expenses must be primarily to alleviate or prevent a physical or mental defect or illness. They don’t include expenses that are merely beneficial to general health, such as vitamins or a vacation”. Then, under the heading “What Medical Expenses Are Includible?”, and under the heading of “Therapy” it says “You can include in medical expenses amounts you pay for therapy received as medical treatment.” https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p502.pdf ).
If you are suffering from an ailment and believe the treatment may fall under the above category, the first thing you MUST do is schedule an appointment with your Doctor. Let him/her know you have an HSA or FSA and let him/her know you would like to use your funds for massage for treatment or prevention of your ailment and ask for a prescription. The prescription, from your Doctor, must include three things:
- Reason: Why do you need massage therapy? (Example: To relieve or reduce_______ (your ailment).
- Frequency: How frequent do you need treatment? (Example: One session every two weeks)
- Duration: How long should you receive treatment? (Example: 6 months, or a year)
Bring your prescription with you to Green Lotus so we can make a copy to have on file. When we have this on file, according to the Minnesota Department of Revenue, it is not necessary to charge sales tax (when the massage is for preventing or alleviating a physical or mental defect or illness and a prescription is shown). (http://www.revenue.state.mn.us/law_policy/revenue_notices/RN_07-06.pdf ). Of course, be sure to keep this prescription in your files with your other tax documents.
Please note: If you are using a debit card that is directly tied to your HSA or FSA account, you may not include tips. Tips may be paid with cash, check or another card.
This time of year you may be deciding how much money to set aside in your HSA or FSA account for next year. Remember to include the cost of your Therapeutic Massage visits in your total amount if you have a qualifying medical condition.
Disclaimer: This article is for information only. It does not guarantee coverage of Therapeutic Massage for your HSA/FSA. Please consult with your HSA/FSA professional to confirm eligibility. Green Lotus will provide receipts upon request, but will not turn receipts in to Insurance, HSA or FSA or take any responsibility for eligibility of services.