Jose Lambiet

Multimillionaire, 88, wife in divorce saga

Lovey and Burt Handelsman
Lovey and Burt Handelsman

A high-profile South Florida real estate and business-law attorney has been ensnared in a Palm Beach divorce saga that pits an 88-year-old multimillionaire against his wife of 67 years.

Burt Handelsman, whose real estate empire includes parts of Duval Street in Key West and most of Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, was at the receiving end of a divorce filing in March.

In the paperwork, Lucille Handelsman, 87, who’s known in Palm Beach society as Lovey, called the marriage born in 1948 in Brooklyn irretrievably broken, alleging her husband has been stepping out on her.

In a deposition made public this week, Lovey named the other woman as Burt’s business lawyer Jane Rankin, a 60-year-old shareholder at the Fort Lauderdale firm of Kubicki Draper.

“I have no knowledge of the claims,” Rankin said. “I have no comment on anything. And I couldn’t respond to anything as ridiculous. I wish all the best to all parties involved.”

In the deposition, Lovey, riddled with arthritis and wheelchair bound, says she began suspecting Handelsman was involved with Rankin while on a cruise in 2008.

“Burt was on the telephone,” Lovey told the lawyers in the divorce, “and he didn’t hear me come back into the state room, and that’s when he told Jane that he loved her and missed her terribly.”

Lovey testified she hasn’t had sex with Burt since, although they shared the same bed until recently.

“We have a very big bed,” she said. “And I haven’t touched him in that bed ...”

Neither Joel Weissman, Lovey’s attorney, nor Burt’s publicist had any comment.


Another TV anchor is dropping out of the news biz. CBS4 weekend anchor and reporter Natalia Zea, a 10-year veteran of the station, is set to walk out of the studio for the last time June 7, station management is telling the newsroom.

Zea’s set to take over as director of community outreach for Miami-Dade Public Schools after the board approved the previously secret hire Wednesday night.

Zea declined to comment, but sources at the CBS corporate-owned station says she’s been telling colleagues she’s “super excited” about the switch.

The Venezuela-born Zea lives in Coral Gables and has a 2-year-old boy and 4-year-old daughter.

“Her schedule at the station already allowed her to spend quite of bit of time with the kids,” our station snitch says. “But this is about making a difference for the county’s children instead of working for a corporate entity.”


Gossip Extra reported last week that Miami Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill had his starter house at the Portside Yacht Club in Fort Lauderdale on the market for nearly twice what he paid for it when he was drafted in 2012. Well, Broward County property records show Tannehill has already sold it for the asking price of $1.32 million. ... Super NFL player’s agent Drew Rosenhaus is suing a former client, troubled ex-Washington Redskins tight end Fred Davis. Rosenhaus asserts in his Miami-Dade County circuit court filing that Davis owes him nearly $200,000 in loans and representation fees. Davis made a big deal out of hiring Rosenhaus in 2009. But things haven’t gone well for the speedy Davis. He spent the 2014 season on drug suspension and 2015 on the New England Patriots’ bench.