Fern J.Finkel, Esq. is an elder law attorney and partner at Finkel & Fernandez, LLP.
She has specialized in elder law and guardianships since 1998 and been in
private practice since 1990. She had previously been an attorney specializing
in medical malpractice and personal injury litigation at the firm of Damashek,
Godosky and Gentile.
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.
As part of her private practice, Fern spends a significant amount of time working pro bono
on behalf of the indigent elderly of Brooklyn. She has spearheaded the Legal Education
Project, known as LEAP, at the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, which she
is a Board Member of.
The LEAP project is dedicated to training attorneys to perform outreach at numerous community
and senior centers in Brooklyn, with a focus on getting as many seniors to have their
health care proxies and advance directives in place as soon as possible, avoiding
the painful process of Guardianship which might otherwise result.
Fern is a board member of the Brooklyn Bar Association, the Chair of the Foundation
Law Committee of the Brooklyn Bar Association, the Vice Chair of the Elder
Law Committee of the Brooklyn Bar Association,a district delegate to the New York State Bar Association Elder Law and Special Needs Section, and a board member of Legal Services New York City. 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 on topics including the Role of the Guardian, Role of the Court Evaluator, Advance
Directives and Guardianship. Since 2004 she has served as
a mentor attorney at the Elder Law Clinic at New York Law School. Fern also serves on the Committees on Character and Fitness for the Second
Fern has won numerous awards for her pro bono service, including the Women’s Bar Association of the
State of New York Hanna S. Cohn Pro Bono Award (2004), the New York State Bar Association Pro Bono
Award for the Second Judicial District (2003), the Brooklyn Bar Association Frieda S. Nisnewitz
Award for Pro Bono Service (1996) and an Award of Merit from the National Center for Missing and
Exploited Children (1997). She was the 2009 and 2013 recipient of the Brooklyn
Bar Association Distinguished Service Award and the recipient of the 2013 Building Bridges Award from the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project. Fern has also been listed as a New York Super Lawyer in the field of Elder Law in 2014 and 2015.