Attorney Paula J. Manderfield - Fraser Trebilcock...

Hon. Paula J. Manderfield (Ret.)

Shareholder / Lansing


  • Western Michigan University Cooley Law School (J.D., 1982)
  • Michigan State University (B.S., Nursing 1979)
  • Michigan Technological University (A.D., Nursing 1975)

Bar & Court Admissions

  • State Bar of Michigan
  • All U.S. Federal Courts
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Hon. Paula J. Manderfield (Ret.) spent 20 years as a Circuit and District Court Judge, in addition to ten years in private practice, before joining Fraser Trebilcock as a Shareholder in 2013.

Paula's judicial experience give her clients a distinct advantage, particularly those needing mediation, or dealing with civil or criminal litigation.

Paula has been a registered nurse for more than 40 years, giving her a unique perspective for handling cases involving health care issues. She serves on the Board of Blue Care Network, the Board of Visitors for Michigan State University's College of Nursing, and holds positions on various legal committees with the State Bar of Michigan and other prominent legal associations.

Other Professional Experience

  • Ingham County Circuit Court Judge (2001-2013)
  • 54-A District Court Judge for the City of Lansing
  • Private Law Practice (1982-1992)
  • Registered Nurse for over 30 years
Professional Associations
  • Michigan Judges Association, Member (2001-Present)
    • Executive Committee Member (2005-Present)
    • Judicial Response Committee Member (2005-Present, Chair 2012)
  • Michigan Judicial Conference, Executive Committee Member (2007-Present)
  • State Bar Of Michigan, Criminal Law Council, Board Member
  • Hon. Paula Manderfield Endowed Scholarship, MSU College of Nursing
    • Principal Donor (1997-Present)
  • American Judges Association, Member (1994-1999)
  • Michigan District Judges Association, Member (1993-2000)
  • Ingham County Bar Association
  • Community Corrections Advisory Board, Board Member & Chair (1994-2003)
  • Women Lawyers Association, Mid-Michigan Chapter
    • President (2003-2004)
    • Treasurer (2004)
  • The Oldham Project, Board Member (2011)
  • Blue Care Network of Michigan, Board Member
    • Healthcare Quality and Service Improvement Committee
  • MSU College of Nursing, Board of Visitors (2005-Present)
  • MSU Alumni Association (1994-Present)
  • Ronald McDonald House of Michigan, Board Member (1998-2001)
  • American Heart Association, Lansing Metro Board
    • Board Member (1998-2002), President (2001)
  • Elder Law of Michigan, Board Member (2002-2008)
  • Advent House Ministries, past Board Member
  • YMCA Metropolitan Board (1995-2000)
  • Commencement Speech for the College of Nursing at Michigan State University (1993)
  • Commencement Speech for Nursing Graduation Class at L.C.C. (1993)
Honors & Distinctions
  • Retired Circuit and District Court Judge
  • Distinguished Alumni Award, MSU-College of Nursing September 2012
  • Judge of the Year Award, September 2008
  • Listed in Michigan Super Lawyers, Alternative Dispute Resolution; 2018-2020
  • Named a Top 30 'Women in the Law' by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in 2021
Testimonials & Client Matters

Mediated a $1.26 million settlement involving a liability claim in which a minor failed to see the plaintiff on his motorcycle and made a left turn directly into his path. The crash caused significant orthopedic injuries to the plaintiff. The Defense admitted liability and agreed that the plaintiff was seriously injured. The dispute was with regard to the future economic impact of plaintiff’s injuries. The plaintiffs’ counsel used medical evidence regarding the injuries, along with future limitations to provide analysis of future wage loss analysis.

“Over the years, I have attended many mediations and have encountered a number of facilitators at work. I enjoyed watching you encourage the parties to reason through the issues. Not only was it clear that you were in your element, it was also evident you have managed to hold fast to your compassion – no small feat after years in a profession that can sometimes usher in cynicism.” - Kim Baker, Adjuster