Dependent Care Fund

Tips for Using the Dependent Care Fund 

  • You have access only to the money currently in your account. This means that your account balance at the end of January will be whatever amount was deducted from your pay(s) during that month.

  • After you have paid for a dependent care service, you can file a claim for reimbursement from your account. Note: You should wait to file a claim until there is enough in your account to cover the amount of the claim. Otherwise, you'll be reimbursed up to the balance in your account when you file the 

    claim. You will be reimbursed for the remainder of the claim after enough money has been credited to your account through future payroll contributions.

The Dependent Care Fund Flexible Spending Account can be used to cover the cost of care for your dependent children under age 13 or adult day care while you (and your spouse, if you're married) work or attend school full time. Eligible dependent care expenses include:

  • costs for before- and/or after-school care
  • payments to a sitter or nurse in your home
  • payments to a licensed day care center or other provider outside your home List of eligible expenses.


You can contribute between $100 and $5,000 annually to this fund (maximum is $2,500 if you and your spouse file separate tax returns). Your contributions are automatically deducted from each pay in equal amounts throughout the year.


You must use the money deposited in your account for expenses during the calendar year. You have until March 31 of next year to file claims for this year's eligible expenses. You'll lose any money in your account that is not used by December 31.