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Practical Money Matters Radio Series

August 29, 2011
Choose Your Open Enrollment Benefits Carefully

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Keep these tips in mind as you review 401(k), flexible spending accounts and other benefit options during this open enrollment season.


Open enrollment season for health care and other employee benefits begins soon. Although the array of choices can be overwhelming, there's too much at stake to not review your options carefully. Here's why:

To control costs, employers sometimes change plans and insurance companies alter coverage terms. So make sure your plans still provide the coverage you need.

If your family status has changed because of marriage, divorce or childbirth, recalibrate your medical, life insurance and flexible spending accounts.

If your employer offers a 401(k) and flexible spending accounts, sign up for them. You'll stash money for retirement and pay for healthcare and dependent care expenses – all while reducing your taxable income now.

Bottom line: Reviewing benefits paperwork can be daunting, but it's worth the effort.

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