From the NYSUT Member Benefits website:
NYSUT Member Benefits
NYSUT Member Benefits Trust was established in 1983 as a not-for-profit trust distinct from the union (NYSUT) for the purpose of endorsing and monitoring quality, competitive insurance plans and benefit programs. These programs and services are available to NYSUT members and agency fee payers. Some are also available to or cover spouses/domestic partners of members, dependent children, dependent parents and grandparents.
NYSUT Member Benefits Trust is a tax-exempt, not-for-profit trust fund established and maintained for the exclusive benefit of the participants and beneficiaries of Member Benefits.
In 2008, the trustees of NYSUT Member Benefits Trust established the NYSUT Member Benefits Corporation, a for-profit corporation. This separate, taxable subsidiary not only protects the Trust's tax-exempt status, it presents the opportunity to expand the types of programs and services offered to members.
In addition to voluntary programs available for purchase or use by individual members, Member Benefits also endorses group programs available for purchase by local associations, their benefit funds and employers.
Unless otherwise specified, the names "NYSUT Member Benefits" and "Member Benefits" encompass both the NYSUT Member Benefits Trust and the NYSUT Member Benefits Corporation.
No member dues monies are received from NYSUT to support the Trust or the Corporation. Member Benefits receives endorsement fees from some of the providers of its endorsed programs. These fees are used solely to defray the costs of administering the 40-some benefit programs of Member Benefits including compensation, rent, office expenses, and the cost of retaining consultants, auditors and attorneys to advise the trustees, directors and staff. Member Benefits revenue is also used to enhance the benefit programs for its participants. No monies are paid to NYSUT except reimbursement for use of facilities and for services and personnel provided by NYSUT to, and at the request of, Member Benefits (with reasonableness of amounts certified annually to the trustees and directors by the Trust's and the Corporation's independent auditors).
NYSUT Member Benefits does not represent that its endorsed benefit programs are the lowest-cost products. Member Benefits trustees, directors, staff, consultants and advisers are committed to obtaining and maintaining quality benefit programs at competitive prices. Participants are encouraged to shop and compare.
Although some of the Member Benefits-endorsed programs may provide legal or financial advice, Member Benefits does not offer investment, legal or tax advice. Participants are urged to consult their own investment, financial, tax and legal advisers to help them with an evaluation of the benefit programs.
NYSUT Member Benefits has staff located at NYSUT headquarters in Albany as well as several of NYSUT's Regional Offices across the state. Each Regional Office has a Member Benefits representative either housed at the office or visiting the office during the course of each month for the purpose of providing service to local leaders and to individual members.