Steven M. Zelman

Steven M. Zelman

Of Counsel
Farmington, Connecticut
860-674-8296 (Farmington Office)
860- 413-9504 (Granby Office)

Steven M. Zelman, Connecticut Judge of Probate (Ret.) focuses on probate administration, estate planning, real estate and commercial litigation.  Judge Zelman retired as a Judge of Probate in August, 2017 after serving more than 26 years.  Judge Zelman served as Judge of Probate for the Town of Bloomfield for 20 years and the Tobacco Valley Probate District for over six years after the Probate Courts in Connecticut were consolidated.  In addition, Judge Zelman was appointed as Administrative Judge for the Hartford Regional Children’s Probate Court by the Connecticut Probate Administrator covering 28 towns in the Hartford area.  He served in that capacity for five years while continuing his service to Tobacco Valley District.

Judge Zelman has represented multi-national corporations in commercial litigation before state and federal courts. He knows how to handle probate administration and estate planning in ways that best serve his clients’ needs and goals. Clients appreciate his empathy and his ability to bring successful outcomes at times of high emotional distress. Prompt efficient attention to family issues in a time of loss is Judge Zelman’s paramount concern. The legal community, including judges and attorneys, frequently call on Steven to speak on a variety of probate issues, estate administration and commercial litigation.

Areas of Practice

  • 25% Estate Planning
  • 25% Collections
  • 25% Probate & Estate Planning
  • 10% Real Estate
  • 15% Wills

Litigation Percentage

  • 25% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Massachusetts, 1973
  • Connecticut, 1974
  • U.S. District Court District of Connecticut, 1975
  • Supreme Court of the United States of America, 1978


  • Suffolk University Law School, Boston, Massachusetts
    • J.D. - 1972
  • University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut
    • B.A. - 1969
    • Major: Liberal Arts


  • Collecting Judgments in Conn., National Business Inst., 1993
  • Symposium On Conversatorships, Quinnipiac Univ., 2003
  • Probate Seminars, Conn. Probate Assembly, 1991 - Present
  • Decedent's Estate Issues, Conn. Bar Association & CT Probate Assembly, 2005

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Connecticut Bar Association, Member, 1974 - Present
  • Commercial Law League of America, Member, 1978 - Present
  • National College of Probate Judges, Member, 1991 - Present
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America, Member, 1999 - Present
  • Hartford County Bar Association, Member, 1977 - 1999
  • Probate Court Rules Advisory Committee (Subcommittee Chair)

Past Employment Positions

  • Conn. Probate Court - Tobacco Valley District, Judge of Probate, 1991 - 2017
  • Hartford Regional Children's Probate Court, Administrative Judge, 2012 - 2017

Pro Bono Activities

  • University of Connecticut Alumni Council, 1993 - 2015
  • Federation Homes, 1992 - 1995


  • English (Primary)