I have to wonder if our differences in perspective are due to differences in age. I started contributing to an HSA three years ago at age 61. I will turn 64 later this year. The odds that I can keep a "good head on my shoulders" in 20 years may not be as good as yours. Keeping a good head on my shoulders is certainly my hope but not something I can take for granted.ChrisC wrote:I think there are sound reasons for not keeping medical receipts for a long period of time, but difficulty in proving an entitlement to HSA reimbursement is not one of them. If you can prove entitlement today, you should be able to prove that 10 or 20 years later if you keep a good head on your shoulders and keep the requisite records.
I am in wonderful health now but family history suggests the real possibility of a sudden incapacitating stroke a decade or more down the road. Having lost a spouse completely unexpectedly to a heart attack at the age of 59, with no opportunity to provide last minute instructions (went to sleep in apparent perfect health and simply did not wake up), I am acutely mindful of trying to minimize the paperwork burdens and stress on those who may be caring for me and my finances when I am no longer able to do so. Asking my loved ones to paw through decades of indecipherable and inscrutable medical statements with their mystifying descriptions trying to figure out what procedures they involved when I may be incapable of answering their questions is not something that makes me feel good. I also note that records of medical expenses for dependents could also raise privacy issues decades down the road if another family member is handling these records.
At this point, the idea of saving receipts for reimbursement decades down the road is actually moot for me because so far I actually have had enough medical expenses (including my ACA premiums on a family coverage high deductible bronze policy, out-of-pocket medical, dental and vision--and no insurance coverage for either of the latter two) that I have been able to itemize all current medical expenses on Schedule A in all years since I started the HSA.
By 2019, I expect my medical expenses to go down quite a bit (I will be on Medicare the whole year, will not have family dependents to cover, etc.) and also expect to have a higher AGI (since I will claim SS survivor benefits when they reach their maximum at my FRA) so I will likely stop itemizing. At that point, I will need to make a decision about whether to save receipts or currently reimburse.