Joanne Fanizza Interview

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Joanne Fanizza is a sole practitioner and president of The Law Offices of Joanne Fanizza, P.A., which has offices in Farmingdale, New York, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  She has been practicing law for 22 years and practices in the areas of elder law, estate planning and administration, real estate, corporate and commercial law and civil litigation.

Joanne is admitted to practice law in Florida, New York and the District of Columbia.  She is also admitted to practice in the federal district courts in South Florida and Long Island, as well as in the 5th and 11th U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals, and in the U.S. Supreme Court.  She is a member of the New York State Bar Association, where she is a member of the Elder Law Committee; the American Bar Association, where she is a member of the Real Property, Trusts and Estates Committee; the Nassau County Bar Association, where she is a member of the Elder Law and Surrogate’s Court committees; and the Broward County, Florida, Bar Association. 

Joanne attended law school at the University of Florida, graduating in 1987.  She also has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Florida, which she received in 1981.  Prior to practicing law she was a newspaper reporter in Florida.

When she first began practicing law, Joanne was associated with a boutique personal injury and media law firm in Fort Lauderdale.  There, she had several court cases that resulted in published opinions and obtained million-dollar verdicts for the firm’s clients.  She then started her own practice in 1995, which evolved into the areas of practice she engages in today.

Joanne has also dabbled in politics, serving in appointive and elective positions in Florida.  She served on her local community’s Board of Adjustments and Appeals, she served a four-year term on City Council, and also served on the Broward County Commission on the Status of Women. During the contested 2000 Presidential election in Florida, she served as an election recount observer, counting “chads”.  Currently she volunteers with the New York Democratic Lawyers Council, an organization that monitors elections in New York, and serves as Regional Coordinator for Suffolk County, New York. 

Joanne has also received awards for pro bono legal work she has performed during her career.  As a member of the Broward County Bar she received several awards, including The Florida Bar President’s Pro Bono Award for the 17th Judicial Circuit.  She is currently participating in two pro bono programs for the Nassau County Bar Association:  The Senior Law Clinic and the Mortgage Foreclosure Settlement Clinic.

Joanne’s  law practice focuses on helping the elderly and their families, primarily through estate planning, Medicaid planning, guardianship, health care and financial decision-making.  This includes the administration of estates, with or without a will.  She practices real estate law, including buying and selling property and transferring property as part of an overall estate plan.  She assists small businesses in their day-to-day affairs, and she handles civil litigation cases.  Her website is www.fanizzalaw.com.

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