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Judge Declines to Remove Britney Spears’ Father from Conservatorship


The judge overseeing the protracted legal battle between Britney Spears and her father James Spears has declined to remove the pop star’s father from his position as head of the court-ordered conservatorship that he entered into in 2008, as The Hollywood Reporter points out. Britney Spears’ lawyer plans to file further petitions to remove her father. “”My client has informed me that she is afraid of her father,” attorney Samuel D. Ingham III told the presiding judge. “She will not perform again if her father is in charge of her career.”

The ousting of James Spears would be a major development for the singer, who has not had full legal control over much of her life since 2008. A Los Angeles court placed Britney Spears under the conservatorship (also known as legal guardianship) in the wake of her public mental-health struggles in 2007. As Britney’s legal guardian, James had control of her finances and career decisions, and, although James Spears had at times shared conservator duties—including with her attorney, Andrew Wallet—he largely exercised sole control over Britney’s assets.

Jodi Montgomery, an independent care manager, took over the conservator role on a temporary basis after James stepped aside for health reasons last year. According to Entertainment Tonight, Britney’s wishes were for Montgomery to remain in the role after the appointment was set to end on August 22.

James Spears’ conservatorship situation had been criticized by the public for its unusually long duration and what some perceived to be unnecessary control over the singer’s life. He admitted his relationship with Britney had “always been strained.” In his conservator role, James had been criticized for the power he held over Britney’s life with her two children, even after an extended period of calm for the singer.

In 2019, Britney’s ex-husband Kevin Federline filed a restraining order against James Spears to keep him away from Sean Preston Federline and Jayden James Federline, Kevin Federline’s two sons with Britney. The restraining order stemmed from an alleged physical altercation between James Spears and Sean Preston. When Andrew Wallet resigned as Britney’s attorney in March 2019 he claimed that “substantial detriment, irreparable harm, and immediate danger will result to the conservatee and her estate if the relief requested herein is not granted on an ex parte basis.”

For more than a year, public concern about Britney’s well-being have grown louder. As her father reported further health problems in early 2019, Britney canceled a promising Las Vegas residency and voluntarily checked herself into a mental-health facility for a 30-day stay. She reassured fans online, posting on Instagram that she needed more “me time.” The concern grew again in 2020 when she said she had burned down her home gym, which she attributed to two unattended candles. As Britney re-entered the legal proceedings surrounding the conservatorship this summer, fans launched a renewed #FreeBritney movement to express their support.



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