Advocate Paul Hoffman was born in Johannesburg and completed his secondary education at nearby St. Martins School, in 1967. He completed his BA. LL.B at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1974. In 1975 he was admitted as an attorney practising in Johannesburg. He practised as a litigation attorney between 1975 and 1980. He was admitted as an advocate in 1980 and practised as a junior at the Cape Bar until 1995. As a jurist, Advocate Hoffman was the Founding editor of Current Law Cassettes, and a part-time lecturer in law of contract and public international law at the University of the Western Cape. He took silk in 1995 and continued to practice at the Cape Bar where he headed its advocacy skills training program. Three successive Judges President of the Cape High Court invited him to grace their Bench as an Acting Judge.
In 2006, after twenty six years of membership, he left the Cape Bar in order to take up an appointment as Director of the Centre of Constitutional Rights. Its mission to uphold the Constitution, dovetails with his personal commitment to the rule of law and the promotion of constitutional democracy. As director he wrote widely on threats to the Constitution and appeared in the Constitutional Court as amicus curiae.
Since January 2009 Paul has been pursuing his passion for exacting accountability via setting up and working with The Institute for Accountability in Southern Africa (IFAISA) and pursuing various human rights and constitutional matters – including the ‘Glenister Case’ (Glenister vs President of RSA 2011 (3) SA 347); the ‘Arms Deal Case’ and the ‘Bread Case’ (Imraahn Ismail Mukaddam and Pioneer Foods (Pty) Ltd, Tiger Consumer Brands Limited, Premier Foods Limited and Legal Resources Centre – CCT 131/12  ZACC23).