The Commuter Choice is an employee fringe benefit plan authorized by Internal Revenue Code to allow you to save money on your Commuter expenses.
While in many ways similar to the Flex Plan, the Commuter Choice Plan is a completely separate benefit program, not a component or optional benefit under the Flex Plan.
- Unlike a Flex Plan, the Commuter Choice allows participants to carry over any “left-over” funds unused at the end of each calendar year into the next plan year.
- Like the Flex Plan, however, the Commuter Choice is a “use it or lose it” benefit because the employee can only be reimbursed for expenses incurred after their participation effective date and then only while they are actively employed with the employer and contributing at least $1 per pay period to that benefit.
If the employee does not incur eligible expenses and submit requests within the required period (180 days after they paid the expense), then any remaining balance will be forfeited. The Commuter Choice can only reimburse for the expenses of the employee, not the expenses of their spouse or dependents.
Transportation Benefits – 2017 Expense Limit $255.00 Per Month *
Transit pass expenses are a pass, token or similar item which allows the purchaser to use a mass-transit facility. The mass-transit can be either publicly or privately operated and includes bus, rail or ferry modes of transportation.
Vanpools are a “commuter highway vehicle” which seats at least six adults plus the driver, at least 80% of the vehicle’s use should be for vanpooling and the van should be at least 50% employee-occupied.
Qualified Parking Benefits – 2017 Expense Limit $255.00 Per Month *
Qualified parking includes fees for parking near your business locations as well as parking near or at a “park and ride” mass-transit station, commuter highway or carpool location. Parking expenses at or near the employee’s home are not qualified expenses.