You are not required to use the state-sponsored insurance program’s vendor, Optum Financial, for your HSA. However, when you enroll in a Consumer-Driven Health Plan, an HSA will automatically be set up for you with Optum Financial. It will be your responsibility to close this account if you choose to do so.
Also, be aware that actively enrolled plan members’ monthly account maintenance fees for the HSA are being paid for by the State Insurance Program. If you open another HSA elsewhere, you will be responsible for any monthly account fees.
Further, your employer, whether it be the state, a higher education institution, a local education school system or a local government entity, will not be able to take funds from your paycheck on a pre-tax basis and transmit them to your HSA institution. If your employer plans to send their contributed funds (not your paycheck contributions) on a monthly or bi-monthly basis to Optum Financial, you would likely lose out on those funds as they are already set up to transmit to Optum Financial. If you want to open an HSA with your own institution, you will need to contribute after-tax funds (up to your maximum contribution) by check or electronic deposit, and then take an above-the-line tax deduction on your taxes next year.
State and higher education employees will not receive the state-provided seed funds in their HSA if they use an HSA administrator other than Optum Financial. The state and higher education institutions only provide these seed funds to the contracted HSA provider, Optum Financial.