Paula Boa Sousa A Danbury, Connecticut lawyer, who can service your legal needs in Estate Planning, Wills and Trusts, Probate and Elder Law

Professional Associations & Memberships

Connecticut Bar Association, Family Law Section Member

Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association, Member

Danbury Bar Association, Past President

Danbury Family Bar Association, Past Chairperson

International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, Member

Connecticut Council for Non-Adversarial Divorce, Member

Collaborative Divorce Team of Connecticut, Member

Connecticut Bar Foundation James W. Cooper Fellow

Judicial District of Danbury, Special Master

Judicial District of Litchfield, Special Master



University of Connecticut School of Law, Hartford, Connecticut, 1986, Doctor of Jurisprudence, Honors: Cum Laude

Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, Connecticut, 1983, Bachelor of Science, Honors: Cum Laude

More than 200 hours of mediation, collaborative and conflict resolution training



Major Considerations in Choosing a Divorce Lawyer

is a Connecticut lawyer who practices in the greater Danbury area, in Fairfield County, Connecticut, primarily in the fields of Family Law, including Divorce, Custody, Collaborative Divorce, and Divorce Mediation, Negligence, and Commercial Litigation. She is an experienced trial lawyer and negotiator; admitted to practice in both State and Federal courts. Attorney DeFranco is a member of the Family Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association. She is a member of the Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association, the Connecticut Bar Association, and past president of the Danbury Bar Association.  She served as the chairperson of the Danbury Family Bar Association for over a decade.  In recognition of her leadership and service to the legal community, Attorney DeFranco was elected as a James W. Cooper Fellow.  She has earned the AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell.  The Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent rating is the highest possible rating for an attorney for both ethical standards and legal ability.  This rating represents the pinnacle of professional excellence.  It is achieved only after an attorney has been reviewed and recommended by their peers – members of the bar and the Judiciary.

Attorney DeFranco is increasingly committed to helping her clients reduce the turmoil inherent in the divorce process while protecting their rights.  She earned her certification as a divorce mediator in 2007 and a collaborative divorce attorney in 2005 in order to offer more options to clients getting divorced.  She continues to sharpen her skills in order to ensure her clients the highest quality of service in collaborative divorce, divorce mediation and divorce litigation. Attorney DeFranco is President of the Collaborative Divorce Group of Western Connecticut.   She is a member of the Collaborative Divorce Team of Connecticut and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals.  Attorney DeFranco is an Officer and Board Member of the Connecticut Council for Non-Adversarial Divorce.  As recognition for her qualifications in family matters, she has served as a Special Master for the State's Judicial Department for many years, making recommendations regarding settlement to litigants involved in the divorce process. She has lectured extensively on various topics of divorce and collaborative divorce law.  She is a trainer for the Connecticut Family Mediation Training Group and regularly trains lawyers, mental health professionals and divorce financial planners in mediation.

Additionally, Attorney DeFranco was an adjunct professor at Western Connecticut State University for ten years.  She has been active in civic matters since she began her legal career in 1986.  She has served on the boards of the Danbury Regional Commission on Child Care, Rights, and Abuse, Inc. (past president); the Women's Center of Greater Danbury; the Western Connecticut Chapter of the American Red Cross; and as treasurer of the Stanley L. Richter Memorial Park Authority.  She was also the Regional Chairperson of Connecticut Legal Services' Campaign for Justice for several years.

Attorney DeFranco obtained her undergraduate degree from Southern Connecticut State University in 1983, and her law degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1986. She continues to practice as a member of the prestigious Danbury law firm, Collins Hannafin, P. C. Collins Hannafin has earned an AV rating under Martindale Hubbell's peer review rating system, the highest rating which can be achieved. Attorney DeFranco has earned an excellent reputation in her representation of hundreds of clients in Family Law, Divorce, Custody, Collaborative Divorce, Divorce Mediation, Negligence, and Commercial Litigation matters.

Attorney DeFranco is a Ridgefield native and currently resides in Danbury with her husband.

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