hero_DependentDayCareAccounts

Eligible

Reimbursements

Qualifying dependents must meet specific criteria, established by the I.R.S., in order to qualify for dependent day care expense reimbursement. For detailed information on qualified dependents and expenses, please see the table below.

Expense

Eligible/Requirements

Advance payment of day care expense
No
After-school care or extended day programs (supervised activities for children after the regular school program)
Yes, these programs are generally custodial in nature and its primary purpose is care for children while their parents work.
Au pair expenses
Yes, but not airfare or other fixed costs.
Babysitter inside or outside of participant’s household
Yes, unless babysitter is a child of the employee (or spouse) under age 19, or is otherwise claimed as a dependent by the employee or spouse on IRS for 1040.
Chauffeur
No
Child of participant, amounts paid to for child care
No, unless child is age 19 or older and cannot be claimed as a dependent of the participant or participant’s spouse.
Cook
Generally no, except where attributable in part to child care.
Dependent care center expense
Yes, provided they meet requirements of Code § 21(b)(2)(C).
Disabled spouse or tax dependent that lives outside of household
No, they must regularly spend at least 8 hours per day in the employee’s household.
Educational expenses - first grade and above
No, educational expenses are not considered expenses for care.
Educational expenses - kindergarten
No, expenses are considered educational in nature and not custodial (regardless of half- or full-day, private or public, state mandated or voluntary).
Educational expenses - pre-kindergarten or nursery school
Yes, since care is primarily custodial in nature.
Elder care / assisted living / custodial care /
long term care /nursing home
Only if such expenses are not attributable to medical services and the qualifying individual spends at least 8 hours per day in the participant’s household.
FICA and FUTA taxes of day care provider
Yes
Food expenses
No, if charged separately from dependent care expense.
Gardener
No
Household services, e.g., housekeeper, maid, cook
Generally no, except where attributable in part to child care.
Incidental expenses - e.g., extra charges for diaper changing, special activities, etc.
No, if charged separately from dependent care expense.
Looking for work - dependent care expenses incurred to enable participant to look for work
Yes
Maid
Generally no, except where attributable in part to child care.
Nanny expenses
Yes, to the extent the expense is attributable to dependent care expenses and expenses of household services attributable in part to care of qualifying individual.
Overnight camp
No
Registration fees for care
No, most fees do not go toward the care of a qualifying individual.
Relative of a participant, expenses paid to for child care (e.g. parent or grandparent of participant)
Yes, unless the relative is a tax dependent of the participant or child under age 19.
Sick-child facility
Yes, if they are incurred to enable participant to go to work when the child is ill.
Sick employee (care for dependent when the participant stays home sick)
No
Summer day camp
Yes, to the extent attributable to dependent care
(should be custodial in nature and not educational).
Transportation expenses
No, if charged separately from dependent care expense.
Volunteer work - expenses incurred to enable participant to volunteer
No, if the volunteer work is unpaid work or for nominal pay.

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