Update: Broward Clerk Brenda Forman Claims In Court That Frm Clerk Howard Forman Has Lost Mind; Seeks Control of Husband’s Money
BY BUDDY NEVINS
Clerk of the Courts Brenda Forman filed court papers Thursday asking to be appointed on an emergency basis a guardian of her husband, former Clerk Howard Forman, alleging he is unable to take care of his own affairs.
“There appears to be an imminent danger that the physical or mental health or safety of the alleged incapacitated person will be seriously impaired or that the property of that person is in danger of being wasted, misappropriated or lost unless immediate action is taken because: the incapacitated person has not been taking proper medication, has not been attending doctors appointments and is showing poor judgement in managing assets,” according to court documents.
The document lists his assets as containing a 50 percent interest in a home valued at 200k, a checking account of $6,900, a second checking account of $6,400 and a saving account of $5,100.
What isn’t listed is whatever money Howard Forman received from the Deferred Retirement Option Program, a lump sum for public employees that would amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
An attorney reached by Browardbeat.com opined that the petition Brenda Forman filed “deficient…An emergency (in this case under the law) is death and manifest injury. These are things citied could be immediately remedied short of the remedy sought.”
But like so many breakups of married couples, this nasty spat is the classic “he said, she said.”
Howard Forman denied the allegation of incompetence in a 10-minute interview with Browardbeat.com on Wednesday. He appeared completely cognizant of the questions asked and discussed retirement and the old days in a rational manner.
According to numerous sources sympathetic to Howard Forman, Brenda Forman was allegedly drugging her husband with medication.
However, when Davie Police were called to the couple’s home at 6:08 p.m. on Monday, their report appeared to back up Brenda Forman’s allegation. It is possible that Howard Forman was over medicated at the time:
A hearing is set for April 5 in front of , magistrate Claudette Vanni, who is the wife of Circuit Judge John Bowman.
Action may not come quickly. It would be highly unusual if the case was not transferred outside of the county’s court system, since Brenda Forman is the clerk of the Broward and her office handles all court documents.
Brenda Forman’s court filing comes one day after Browardbeat.com’s report that the political couple’s marriage was dissolving over allegations that she abused her husband. She also muzzled the Clerk of Courts employees, forbidding them to talk to the media.
Sources say that Forman has already filed for divorce. Browardbeat.com could not obtain the court papers.
Asked about the split on Wednesday, Howard Forman appeared to confirm it: “Your information could be correct.”
Asked for further comment, Forman said, “You’ll be reading about it.”
The disintegration of the marriage comes less than five months after Brenda Forman surprisingly election win to replace the retiring Howard Forman, who served from 2001 through last year.
Howard Forman’s marriage over four years ago to Brenda Forman, a clerk in his office, was a shock to the Broward political establishment. She is 14 years younger than her 72-year-old husband. Brenda Forman also had several previous marriages and a history of bad debts.
Brenda Forman and Howard Forman: Happier Times
Howard Forman, who is now retired, is a longtime office holder in Broward and his late wife Susan (Schwartzman) Forman was a beloved political figure, too.
He was a Hallandale City Commissioner from 1973-1976 and then a Broward County commissioner from 1976-1988. He then was a state Senator 1988 through 2000. He then became clerk.