Dependent Care Account (DCA) Support

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Beginning in 2022, you may allot up to $5,000 per tax year, or $2,500 if married and filing a separate return.

  • Typically, you can only elect contributions into your DCA during a yearly open enrollment period, but there may be exceptions if you experience a qualifying life event. Some changes may not be permitted. Check with your employer regarding the plan design and/or restrictions. 

    A DCA may allow certain changes when there is a change in the need for care or cost of care, as well as when there is a change in care providers.

    Your employer determines if you can make mid-plan year election changes. You should contact your employer if you've experienced a qualifying event and wish to make a change.

  • Yes. Here is how:

    • Online
      • Log in to your online account.
      • Click on the File a Claim button.
      • Select Reimbursement Account(s).
      • Complete the claim form.
      • Click the Submit button.

    • AFmobile®
      • Touch the Submit Reimbursement button on the AFmobile dashboard.
      • Complete the Claim Form.
      • Click the Submit button.

    To send a payment to a provider instead of reimbursing yourself, select Yes on the Pay Provider section. Then, choose your provider's name from the dropdown menu. If you don’t see your provider listed, select Add New Provider Record to add your provider. Enter your provider’s name, address, city, state, and zip code.

  • Qualifying expenses may include before-school care, after-school care, summer day camp, and day care. For more information, check out our list of eligible expenses.

  • DCAs are “use or lose” accounts. This means, at the end of your plan year, the funds remaining in your account may be lost.

    Your plan may include a runoff period that allows you to file claims for the previous plan year’s expenses. However, these expenses must have been incurred during the plan year.

    To view your specific plan details, log in to your online account and select the account name from the home dashboard. 

    View Reimbursement Account Details 

    Read: Carryovers, grace periods, and runoff periods - what are the differences?

    CARES Act: For 2020 and 2021 plan years, your employer had the option to extend claims period, runoff period, and increase carryover amounts. Please reach out to your employer for more details. Read a summary of Section 125 CARES Act updates 

  • If you already have an American Fidelity online account, simply log in to your account to view your DCA information.

    If you have not created an account, click here to register now. Then, follow the prompts to complete the registration process. You will use this same registration information on the mobile app, AFmobile®.

  • The fastest way to file a reimbursement claim is through your online account, or on our mobile app, AFmobile®.

    • Online
      1. Log in to your online account
      2. Click the File a Claim button on the top of the page
      3. Select Reimbursement Account
      4. Complete the claim form
      5. Click the Submit button
    • AFmobile
      1. Touch the Submit Reimbursement button on the AFmobile dashboard
      2. Complete the Claim Form
      3. Click the Submit button
    • Fax or Mail
      1. Download and complete a Dependent Care Reimbursement/Provider Acknowledgement Form and include all applicable documentation. Please note, paper claim filing is not the fastest option.

    Eligible expenses generally must have been incurred during the current plan year. Check with your employer for specific rules applicable to your plan.

  • Turnaround time for claims processing is generally 3-5 business days after we receive all required documentation.

  • The fastest way to receive your reimbursement is through direct deposit.

    Sign up for direct deposit online by logging in to your online account and selecting Manage My Reimbursement Account. Hover over your name to access your Profilethen click the Edit button above Reimbursement Method.

    If you do not sign up for direct deposit, you will receive a check by mail. Note: This method will increase the time it takes to receive your reimbursement.

    • Online
    • AFmobile®
      • Log in to AFmobile to view your DCA balance from the home dashboard. 
  • Internal Revenue Code (IRC) regulations have requirements stating that expenses must be verified. For DCAs, the information required may be provided by a third party in the form of a statement or documentation.

    When filing a DCA claim, you must provide the following required information during the claim process:

    • The tax ID of the care provider, or
    • The individual Social Security Number of the care provider
  • No, you may not add documentation to your existing denied claim. You will need to submit a new claim with the correct documentation.

How Does a DCA Work?

A DCA is used to reimburse yourself for eligible dependent day care expenses. Your contribution is withheld from your paycheck before tax, which in turn reduces your overall tax burden.

Eligible services must be received and paid for before filing for a Dependent Care Account (DCA) reimbursement.

Required Information

When filing a DCA claim, you must provide the following during the claim process:

  • The tax ID of the care provider, or
  • The individual Social Security Number of the care provider

For a step-by-step look at how a DCA works, check out this diagram.

Learn More About DCAs 

How-To Videos

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