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What Does the PHIT Act Help Families Save on? What's Not Covered?

Corey Loehr
September 12, 2018
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If you’ve read about the PHIT Act, you know that it’s an American initiative to get families moving. By freeing up an extra $2,000 for families ($1,000 for single Americans), the idea is that Americans will prioritize getting fit. It’s a bipartisan Act with major support and is gaining traction after passing the House. The PHIT Act covers expenses like gym memberships, sports leagues, and workout equipment. Yes, you read that correctly.Aside from investing in the personal health of Americans, the bill acts to lower the overall costs of healthcare. By using preventative “wellness” care, it’s hoped that down the road overall American healthcare costs will go down. According to The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the U.S. spent $3.5 trillion on healthcare in 2017. The CMS also estimated that U.S. health care spending will reach roughly $5.7 trillion by 2026.Aside from saving the U.S. money by investing in health, we can’t forget about the money American families will save. According to IHRSA, the PHIT Act may end up saving Americans 20-30% of fitness-related costs.But what exactly does the PHIT Act cover? Not everything – but a surprisingly wide array of fitness-related expenses.

What the PHIT Act WILL Cover

Previously, health savings accounts and flexible spending accounts only covered doctors’ visits and prescription costs. With the PHIT Act, you can expect to see things like gym memberships, certain workout equipment, and youth sports fees covered. It’s all an effort to free up spending that Americans previously would not have budgeted towards getting themselves (and their families) fit. The PHIT Act covers fitness expenses unlike anything Americans have seen before.To name a few, under the PHIT Act Americans may be able to reimburse these items:

  • Youth and Adult Sports Leagues
  • Martial Arts, Yoga, Spin, Gymnastics, and Other Niche Fitness Classes
  • Personal Trainers and Consultations
  • Public Gym and Health Club Memberships and Fees
  • School Sports Fees
  • Fitness Equipment
  • Fitness Gear (like helmets and pads)
  • Kids Athletic Camps and Programs

It will not raise or decrease the total amount of deductions taxpayers pay.

What the PHIT Act WON’T Cover

The PHIT Act will cover the majority of fitness programs, classes, and equipment – but it does not cover everything. The items the PHIT Act will not cover include the following:

  • Golf
  • Hunting
  • Sailing
  • Horseback Riding
  • Private Gyms (and gyms that offer said services)
  • Fitness-related Books and Videos
  • Fitness Apparel (like shoes and clothing)

The Act is making waves in Congress. Learn more about what the PHIT Act could mean for you, and how it could help or hinder your business or family.