After 13 years as Britney Spears’ conservator, the singer’s father, Jamie Spears, has filed a petition in the Los Angeles Superior Court to end the conservatorship entirely.
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The move comes after Jamie began proceedings to step down as Britney’s conservator last month. Jamie had been in charge of the conservatorship since it was enacted in 2008, and had recently come under intense scrutiny as a result of the #FreeBritney campaign, as well as a landmark hearing in June where the singer called the conservatorship “abusive”. He had previously been adamant that there were “no grounds whatsoever” to have him removed from the singer’s conservatorship.
NBC News reports today (September 8) that Jamie is now siding with Britney to have the conservatorship ended altogether, saying that she “is entitled to have this Court now seriously consider whether this conservatorship is no longer required”.
Jamie reportedly flipped his stance due to recent changes in Britney’s circumstances, which the filing notes have changed “to such an extent that grounds for establishment of a conservatorship may no longer exist”.
The document continues: “The conservatorship has helped Ms. Spears get through a major life crisis, rehabilitate and advance her career, and put her finances and her affairs in order. But recently, things have changed. Ms. Spears is now outspoken in her frustration with the level of control imposed by a conservatorship, and has pleaded with this Court to ‘let her have her life back.’”
Jamie also argued in his filing that, per probate code, Britney shouldn’t need to undergo any psychological evaluation before her conservatorship is ended – aligning with wishes that Britney expressed at her hearing in June. The “main reason” she was there, Britney said in court, was because “I want to end the conservatorship without being evaluated”.
According to Associated Press, the petition maintains that Jamie acted in Britney’s best interests throughout the last 15 years of her conservatorship: “As Mr. Spears has said again and again, all he wants is what is best for his daughter.
“If Ms. Spears wants to terminate the conservatorship and believes that she can handle her own life, Mr. Spears believes that she should get that chance.”
Britney’s current lawyer, Matthew Rosengart, called Jamie’s petition a “massive” legal victory and “vindication” for the singer in a statement to AP.
He added, “It appears that Mr. Spears believes he can try to avoid accountability and justice, including sitting for a sworn deposition and answering other discovery under oath, but as we assess his filing (which was inappropriately sent to the media before it was served on counsel) we will also continue to explore all options.”
Rosengart had previously filed to remove Jamie as conservator following his appointment as Britney’s lawyer back in July, and earlier this month claimed that Jamie was trying to “barter” his exit from Britney’s conservatorship in exchange for roughly $2million in payments.
In July, Britney stated that she wanted to have her father charged for conservatorship abuse. In her June hearing, she called the conservatorship “abusive” and claimed that she was forbidden from having more children, getting married, or taking out her IUD. Jamie’s lawyers responded in a court filing that Jamie “is simply not involved in any decisions related to Ms. Spears’s personal care or medical or reproductive issues”.
Following the June hearing, Jamie’s counsel also called for an investigation into the singer’s statements, writing that “it is critical that the Court confirm whether or not Ms. Spears’s testimony was accurate in order to determine what corrective actions, if any, need to be taken”.