Try as we might, life is hard to predict — and so are our expenses.  Surprises happen, sicknesses turn up and health care expenses—well, they can change quickly.  That's part of the reason the "use-or-lose" provision for health care flexible spending accounts (FSAs), which forces account holders to spend down their accounts by the end of the year or face losing the money, has been so unpopular. 

But, the times, they are a changin' (hope the lyrical reference isn't lost on folks).

Last week, the IRS issued new guidelines for FSAs under the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act and requested comments on whether to modify the "use-or-lose" rule.  That's good news for the millions of Americans who use tax-advantaged accounts to cut down expenses on health care as well as for benefits managers and administrators of tax-advantaged accounts like my company, WageWorks.

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