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House committee OKs bill restricting FSA, HSA abortion reimbursements


WASHINGTON—Employees no longer could receive tax-free reimbursement from their flexible spending accounts or health savings accounts for out-of-pocket expenses related to most abortions under a bill the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee approved Thursday.

Under the bill, H.R. 1232, sponsored by Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp, R-Mich., which the committee cleared on a 22-14 vote, FSA or HSA reimbursement for abortion-related expenses would be added to the employee's taxable income. Under current law, such reimbursements are tax-free.

“This is about making sure taxpayer funds are not used to pay for abortions,” Rep. Camp said prior to the committee vote.

The restriction would not apply to an abortion performed in the case of a pregnancy that resulted from rape or incest. It also would not apply if a woman suffers from a physical disorder, injury or illness that would, as certified by a physician, “place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself,” according to an analysis by the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.

The measure, which if approved, would go into effect in the year following enactment, now goes to the full House of Representatives.