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Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) today announced that it has launched a LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) initiative which provides Financial Advisors with wealth planning tools, business development and marketing resources designed specifically for LGBT prospects and clients. “In today's ever-changing financial and legal environment, it is important for LGBT couples to work with a wealth management organization that specializes in LGBT wealth planning issues,” said Douglas J. Ketterer, Head of U.S. Field Management. “Same-sex marriage is legal in Iowa, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Washington and the District of Columbia, and voter-approved freedom to marry laws in Maine and Maryland are being implemented. The other remaining states have either a variety of civil union laws or no legal standing at all for same sex couples. This has created a host of financial planning complications for the LGBT community, including what to do when buying a home, making a will, designating beneficiaries, transferring assets and making sure partners have hospital visitation rights, and we are equipping our Financial Advisors with the tools they need to advise on these and other issues,” Mr. Ketterer said. A new client educational resource – LGBT On Your Terms – is available to help same-sex couples understand the factors that are likely to affect their family's finances and long-term plans. Details are being made available to Financial Advisors about the Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisors (ADPA (SM)) program, a professional designation which equips advisors to meet the unique financial planning needs of couples who are considered to be unmarried under either state or federal law, or both. The Firm’s Diversity Council, a 19-member group of Financial Advisors and branch managers who meet periodically to advise management on diversity issues, contributed to the development of this initiative. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, a global leader, provides access to a wide range of products and services to individuals, businesses and institutions, including brokerage and investment advisory services, financial and wealth planning, credit and lending, cash management, annuities and insurance, retirement and trust services.