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"Mistaken" Cafeteria Deduction


BTH
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I haven't thought about Cafeteria Plans in years (I deal with Pensions), so forgive my ignorance with this question.

A relative of mine (single, no dependants) started a new job last July and while she was filling out all of the various paperwork, for some reason completed a Cafeteria Plan enrollment form authorzing the company to deduct monies for health insurance. This was even though they were deducting money for health coverage already. I guess she didn't know what the Cafeteria Plan form meant. Anyway, she doesn't renew the Cafeteria election as of January 1st, realizes that her paycheck is significan't higher now, and finally realizes what happened, that more money was being deducted for health insurance than she wanted or needed.

I'm pretty sure I know the answer to this since it really was her fault, but does she have any options in getting the money back that was deducted "by mistake?" Thanks for any input.

BTH

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I'm assuming that what she signed up for was a medical spending account? So she should look for any reimbursable items that she may have paid for during the last half of the year? E.g., medical deductibles or co-pays, dental deductibles or co-pays, eyeglasses, etc. More importantly, see if the plan is going to reimburse 2003 over-the-counter drugs and similar items -- since the IRS issued that ruling in September or so making them reimbursable by a cafeteria plan. The plan may have a filing deadline of March or so, so don't delay.

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