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Small Business Employee Benefits and HR Blog

HRA vs HSA vs FSA Comparison Chart

pie chart cartoon1 resized 600Comparison charts provide an excellent way of summarizing complex information. As a follow-up to yesterday's HRA case studies, check out this HRA, HSA, FSA comparison chart. It's a good summary of the key differences between the four primary types of health-care reimbursement accounts and arrangements.

What does HRA, HSA, FSA, PRA Stand for?

HRA = Health Reimbursement Arrangement. For the purposes of this blog, we will be examining the qualified small employer health reimbursement arrangement (QSEHRA)

HSA = Health Savings Account

FSA = Flexible Spending Account

HRA, HSA, and FSA Feature Comparison






Who may Contribute Employer Only Employer or
Employee or Employer
Cost of Employer Contributions Only pay for Utilization (typically 25-50%) 100% Paid
regardless of Utilization
Average Cost to Cover $2,000/year Deductible $500-1,000 $2,000 $2,000
Maximum Annual Contribution $5,050 (single)
$10,250 (family) for 2018
$3,400 (single)
$6,750 (family) for 2017
Determined by Employer; Capped at $2,600, including employee contributions, in 2017
Eligibility Requirements Must have minimum essential coverage to receive reimbursements tax-free Must have HSA-qualified health coverage None or Determined by Employer
Each Employee must open new Bank Account? No Yes No
Tax Treatment Tax-free Tax-free Tax-free
Medical Expenses Allowed Health Insurance Premiums + IRC 213(d) IRC 213(d) Expenses w/ No Employer Limitations IRC 213(d) Expenses;
but no Personal Health Insurance
Use for Non-Medical Expenses None None None
Carryover of
Unused Funds to Next Year
No Yes No
Portable after Termination No Yes No
Administrator Employer or TPA Employee Employer or TPA
Cross-Compatibility With HSA* or FSA Limited-Purpose or Post-Deductible FSA or HRA With HRA or HSA*

Employer Reporting

Employer Views Detailed Utilization Reports No Tracking Possible Employer Views Detailed Utilization Reports

*HSAs are fully compatible only with certain HRA and FSA administration platforms that enable HSA-Compatibility .

Learn the differences between HSAs, HRAs, and FSAs