Law Offices of
Fern J. Finkel, Esq.
Julie Stoil Fernandez, Esq.

From the safety of our remote workplaces, we are here to assist you in the safety of your home to get your planning in place.

As 2021 commences and the pandemic continues, we are working remotely, consulting with our clients, new and old. We can assist you with the preparation and execution of your planning documents, including:
Our office is filing Guardianship Petitions and Applications and preparing matters for Probate and Administration. By Executive Orders 202.7 and 202.14, extended through January 29, 2021, and anticipated to be further extended, the remote execution of documents requiring witnessing, verification and or notarization can now be accomplished virtually by video conference, carefully following the technical rules for remote signing which we will counsel you through step by step through the successful completion of your documents.
Update on Remote Notarization and Witnessing:
The Executive Orders allowing for remote notarization and witnessing of documents expired on June 25, 2021. All executions are now in person, pending further legislation.
New Power of Attorney Laws In Effect as of June 13, 2021:
The New York State General Obligations Law setting forth the provisions relating to Powers of Attorney has been amended effective June 13, 2021, providing for a drastic change to the Power of Attorney law and enacting a new Statutory Short Form Power of Attorney. The Statutory Gifts Rider, formerly required to be executed simultaneously with the Power of Attorney to convey gifting authority to the Agent(s), has been eliminated and any desired gifting authorities must be included in the Modifications Section of the Power of Attorney. The new form must be notarized and witnessed in its entirety by two witnesses who are not named as Agent(s) or permissible recipients of gifts. Previously executed Powers of Attorney completed in accordance with the laws in effect at the time of execution will be grandfathered in and remain valid. Most significantly, damages and attorney's fees for banks and other institutions or third parties who unreasonably reject properly executed statutory Powers of Attorney are now in place. Please contact us if you wish for us to review your previously executed Power of Attorney or to help you complete a new Power of Attorney on the new form in compliance with the new laws.
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We are here to safely assist you with your planning needs.
Our attorneys and staff are working on-site and remotely, and are available to consult with clients, new and old. We welcome vaccinated clients into our office, and are following all COVID-19 safety protocols, including mandatory masking, a state-of-the-art air filter, heightened air circulation, and office spaces disinfected between client appointments. Remote consultations via video conference are also available for anyone who is not vaccinated or who would like to consult with us virtually. Home visits are offered on an as-needed basis as well. We can assist you with the preparation and execution of your planning documents, including: Last Wills and Testaments, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Deeds, Health Care Proxies, Living Wills, Nominations of Guardian, and other documents to suit your individual planning needs. We offer asset protection strategies and assist with Medicaid planning and applications. We represent clients in all aspects of Guardianship matters, as well as Probate and Administration.
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Services We Offer

At Finkel & Fernandez, LLP., our co-founding partners, Fern J. Finkel and Julie Stoil Fernandez, bring decades of experience in elder law, estate planning and special needs planning and advocacy to our clients.

We offer a wide variety of services and practical planning instruments for the protection of older adults, persons with disabilities and their loved ones. We work closely with clients and their families to plan for future financial and personal safety through estate and asset protection planning, special needs trusts, Medicaid and benefits planning, and advance directives including wills, trusts, powers of attorney, health care proxies, living wills and other planning instruments. We represent clients in Article 81 guardianship proceedings, and are frequently appointed by the Courts as Court Evaluator, as Counsel to the Alleged Incapacitated Person, and as Guardian.

Video Presentations

Practice Areas

Servicing Brooklyn, the New York City area, Long Island,
and all counties of New York State

Elder Law Overview

Elder Law provides an integrated approach to resolving the issues facing aging clients.

Guardianship

If your loved one becomes incapacitated and proper personal and financial advance directives are not in place, a guardianship may be required.

Supplemental Needs Trusts

A Supplemental Needs Trust (SNT), also known as a Special Needs Trust, is a type of Trust commonly used to “supplement” care and needs for a beneficiary while receiving means-tested public benefits

Last Wills And Testaments

Any individual 18 years of age or older who is of sound mind may make a Last Will and Testament, also known as a Will.

Medicare

Medicare is a federal health insurance program for eligible individuals over age 65, individuals under 65 who have been receiving Social Security Disability Insurance for over two years.

Medicaid

Medicaid is a government health insurance program which may provide eligible individuals with medical care, services, and prescription drugs.

Stay up to Date

On all the latest legal news, facts, and updates

Recent Updates

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Preparing Your Planning Documents During the Pandemic

New York State Budget enacted by Governor Cuomo on April 3, 2020 will have a severe impact on Medicaid eligibility rules and requirements. Significantly, the implementation of the rules has been pushed forward from its prior designated start date of October 1, 2020 to April 1, 2021.

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Preparing Your Planning Documents During the Pandemic

New York State Budget enacted by Governor Cuomo on April 3, 2020 will have a severe impact on Medicaid eligibility rules and requirements. Significantly, the implementation of the rules has been pushed forward from its prior designated start date of October 1, 2020 to April 1, 2021.

Read More »

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Client Valued Reviews

What They Are Saying…

“Fern had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Jane Smith
Brooklyn, NY
“Julie had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
John Doe
Westchester, NY
“Abby had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Maria Feliby
Merrick, NY
Rated By Super Lawyers

Attorney Name, ESQ.

Title

Tagline/Motto

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Maecenas suscipit leo efficitur libero scelerisque, et consequat libero scelerisque. Ut ultrices commodo ligula vitae iaculis. Proin sollicitudin bibendum nisl vel accumsan. Morbi interdum risus at eros euismod pulvinar. Donec ut nibh at enim dignissim finibus tristique a justo. Mauris convallis, urna nec fermentum interdum, est risus sodales urna, vel blandit mauris libero eu erat. Phasellus sollicitudin, orci in ornare vehicula, est sem gravida turpis, quis porttitor metus tortor id lorem. Maecenas vitae massa nec ipsum tincidunt venenatis eget ac urna. Proin euismod purus euismod mi mollis posuere. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Curabitur auctor posuere nunc, quis tincidunt arcu.

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Testimonials

Here is what our clients are saying

“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Jane Smith
New York, NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
John Doe
John Doe, Westchester NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Maria Feliby,
Merrick, NY
Abby C. Zampardi, Associate Attorney
Rated By Super Lawyers

Abby C. Zampardi

Associate Attorney

Tagline/Motto

Abby C. Zampardi has been with Finkel & Fernandez, LLP since 2015, assisting clients in the drafting of all advance directives and drafting petitions and motions for guardianship litigation.

Prior to becoming the associate attorney at Finkel & Fernandez, Abby worked in the Foreclosure Part of the Nassau County Supreme Court, specializing in preparing orders and other documentation to assist with the adjudication of foreclosure cases.

Abby received her Juris Doctor degree from The George Washington University School of Law in 2014 and is admitted to practice law in New York and New Jersey. She received her Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science, summa cum laude, from Binghamton University in 2011.

Abby was a Notes Editor and the Technology Editor of the Public Contract Law Journal, a publication of The George Washington University Law School in conjunction with the Public Contract Law section of the American Bar Association.

Abby is a member of the New York State Bar Association and the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association.

Testimonials

Here is what our clients are saying

“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Jane Smith
New York, NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
John Doe
John Doe, Westchester NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Maria Feliby,
Merrick, NY
Fern J. Finkel, Esq., Partner
Rated By Super Lawyers

Fern J. Finkel, Esq.

Partner

Tagline/Motto

Fern J. Finkel, Esq. is a co-founding partner at Finkel & Fernandez, LLP, concentrating in elder law, estate planning, asset protection, benefits and guardianships. She has been in private practice since 1990. Fern brings a wealth of experience and compassion to her clients. She is known for her skillful analysis of financial and personal circumstances and for providing practical planning to enable seniors and disabled clients to remain independent through advance directives, asset protection, benefits planning and trusts.

Fern graduated with honors from New York University College of Business and Public Administration in 1981. She received her Juris Doctor Degree from Boston University School of Law in 1984. She has been recognized as a New York Super Lawyers selectee in the field of Elder Law in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Fern has been selected by the Courts, as well as by family members, to serve as the appointed Guardian and/or Trustee for many individuals in need of personal needs and property management. She represents clients in all aspects of guardianship proceedings and has been appointed as Counsel and as Court Evaluator by the New York State Supreme Court in countless cases. She has helped thousands of seniors through her extensive community outreach and pro bono services on behalf of the indigent elderly of New York City. Fern spearheaded the Legal Education and Assistance Project, known as LEAP, at the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project. LEAP’s mission is to train and support pro bono attorneys in providing community outreach and education on all aspects of advance planning to seniors, with the goal of maximizing their independence and ability to remain at home long term.

Fern is the Treasurer of the New York State Bar Association Elder Law and Special Needs Section, Vice President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) New York Chapter, Chair of the Brooklyn Bar Association Foundation Law Committee, Co-Facilitator of the Working Model of Guardianship – WINGS (Working Interdisciplinary Network of Guardianship Stakeholders), a Founder of the Touro Center Aging and Longevity Institute Guardianship Certificate Program, a Special Master of the Appellate Division Second Department Mandatory Civil Appeals Mediation Program, and Vice Chair of the Brooklyn Bar Association Elder Law Committee. She served for years as a volunteer certified mediator with Safe Horizons for community disputes, PINS cases and custody matters, as well as with the United States District Court, Eastern District.

Fern lectures for various Bar Associations and Continuing Legal Education providers on topics including the Role of the Guardian, Role of the Court Evaluator, Role of the Attorney for the AIP, Advance Directives, Medicaid and Asset Protection, Aging in Place, Supplemental Needs Trusts and Guardianships. She is a mentor attorney at the Brooklyn Law School HELP (Helping Elders Through Litigation and Policy) Clinic, the Touro Law School Externship Program, and the New York Law School Elder Law Clinic. Fern serves on the Committees on Character and Fitness for the Second Judicial Department.

Fern has received numerous awards for her pro bono service including: Selection as a 2019 “Champions of Justice: Women in Leadership in Law and Administration of Justice” Honoree by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle the 2013 Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project Building Bridges Award, the 2013 Brooklyn Bar Association Distinguished Service Award, the 2009 Brooklyn Bar Association Distinguished Service Award, the 2004 Women’s Bar Association of the State of New York Hanna S. Cohn Pro Bono Award, the 2003 New York State Bar Association Pro Bono Award for the Second Judicial District, the 1999 Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project Pro Bono Award, the 1996 Brooklyn Bar Association Frieda S. Nisnewitz Award for Pro Bono Service, and an Award of Merit from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children 1997.

Fern was previously an Associate Attorney at the law firm of Damashek, Godosky and Gentile, where she litigated medical malpractice and personal injury cases.

Testimonials

Here is what our clients are saying

“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Jane Smith
New York, NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
John Doe
John Doe, Westchester NY
“She had full knowledge of my selected legal case and completed the work and case to my satisfaction. Highly Recommend!”
Maria Feliby,
Merrick, NY
Julie Stoil Fernandez, Esq., Partner
Rated By Super Lawyers

Julie Stoil Fernandez, Esq.

Partner

Tagline/Motto

Julie Stoil Fernandez, Esq. a co-founding partner of Finkel & Fernandez, LLP is a highly experienced attorney who has been fighting for the safety and welfare of seniors and persons with disabilities since 1993.

Before beginning her legal career, Julie worked as a counselor for homeless men and women and, later, ran a 500-bed emergency overnight shelter for homeless men, forging close bonds with those in need of protection. Seeking to have greater impact, Julie attended law school at Northeastern University and graduated in 1992.

Immediately following law school, Julie worked at Manhattan Psychiatric Center on Ward’s Island in New York City for Mental Hygiene Legal Service, Appellate Division First Judicial Department, representing psychiatric patients in mental hygiene law retention hearings and treatment over objection proceedings in state and private psychiatric hospitals. Her representation included children institutionalized on Ward’s Island, and insanity acquittees at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center.

Julie Stoil Fernandez, Esq., Partner and ShirleyNext, Ms. Stoil started a solo elder law practice in Park Slope, Brooklyn which she continued for 15 years, providing guardianship representation, mental health advocacy and estate probate and administration. She also has since 1993, been appointed by judges in the New York State Supreme Court in all counties in New York City as Court Evaluator in Guardianship proceedings and as a Guardian and Trustee for persons adjudicated incapacitated. In 2015, she co-founded Finkel and Fernandez with Fern J. Finkel.

Julie is skilled at analyzing issues which arise when a person’s legal capacity is in question. She is quick to grasp complex fact patterns and excels at predicting the likelihood of success of a case. She creatively addresses emergencies which often arise while litigants are waiting to be heard on a guardianship matter and effectively negotiates agreements between oppositional family members in contested cases. She is a fierce advocate for her clients and, when litigation is necessary, Julie brings her extensive experience and passion to the cause.

Julie has assisted thousands of clients – protecting housing benefits; individual liberties and patients’ rights in institutional settings and the community; and through litigation, advocacy and special needs planning. Julie also is certified as an Elder Law, Family and Divorce Mediator and offers mediation services to parties who seek workable solutions to conflicts without litigation – an often-preferred method when addressing issues of mental illness and treatment compliance.

Julie is Co-Chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Elder Law and Special Needs Section’s Mental Health Committee, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) and the Brooklyn Bar Association where she is a member of the Elder Law Committee. She has been selected as a Super Lawyer in both 2019 and 2020.

Both Fern and Julie serve as mentor attorneys to students from New York Law School’s Elder Law Clinic, Touro Law School’s Elder Law Externship Program and the Brooklyn Law School’s Helping Elders Through Litigation and Policy (HELP) Clinic.

Julie has written several elder law articles and she lectures in continuing legal education programs and in the community, providing guidance on using advance directives to help seniors age in place and retain independence.

Julie received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts in 1985 and received her Juris Doctor degree in 1992 from Northeastern University School of Law. She was admitted to the New York State Bar in 1993.

Testimonials about Julie Stoil Fernandez

Here is what our clients are saying

“Five stars for Julie Stoil Fernandez and Finkel & Fernandez. I hired Julie to help me get authority to remove a dangerous family member from my mother's home, when my mother, due to Dementia, was no longer able to say she wanted the family member removed. Julie worked diligently, and tirelessly during this very lengthy process. Julie was always encouraging and confident that we would prevail, and we did!!”
-Michele S.
“I first hired Julie in 2004, when my partner suffered a stroke and needed the appointment of a guardian in Queens County. It was a hotly contested matter with one of the parties even getting violent in the courthouse. Julie worked tirelessly with great patience to assist in resolving the legal and personal issues. Her dedication to her clients is extraordinary. She followed up on every detail until the Guardians were in place and we were enrolled in all the proper rehabilitation programs. Later, my partner regained his capacity and Julie assisted us in terminating the guardianship. Finkel & Fernandez then assisted us in preparing our advanced directives last year and making sure my partner’s funds were protected from predatory family members.”
-Eileen M.

In The News

Here are some recent updates

Queens Daily Eagle Logo

Op-Ed: Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail

Examples of abuse and predation are prevalent in Queens. Every day scammers and schemers target senior citizens as well as younger people with impaired cognition. Individuals who fail to plan for their own potential impairments diminished capabilities also face future consequences. But the financial and emotional damage they incur are avoidable with the help of an attorney.

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