Britney Spears Conservatorship Battle, Explained

Britney Spears Conservatorship Battle, Explained

04/05/2021

Britney Spears has been in the spotlight since she exploded on the music scene with her first hit single Baby One More Time in 1998. She maintained a stellar career with hit after hit and along the way, she experienced the highs and lows that came along with her fame. Most fans weren’t aware of the situation that was unfolding behind the scenes, and could only see what was presented to them through the lens. The secrets lurking in the shadows revealed the dark side of fame, and the myriad of emotions Britney Spears was feeling. The world really took notice in 2007 when she shaved her head and had the very public and now infamous situation with her umbrella. As revealed by the New York Times, her mental breakdown was evident and was instantly blasted over every media channel. Soon after, a conservatorship was imposed upon her, and here we stand today.

The Conservatorship, Explained

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The recently released documentary about the life of Britney Spears, Framing Britney Spears, is a tell-all of the conservatorship and the tangled web that surrounds her life. If you’re confused by what a conservatorship is, and how it is being used in the case of Britney Spears, you’re not alone.

When someone is deemed to be unfit to take care of themselves or their finances, a conservatorship can be imposed. This is a method designed to appoint legal, court-ordered guardianship to someone that is able to manage the affairs at hand.

In Britney’s case, she was put under temporary psychiatric hold in 2008, and her father and an attorney were appointed as the conservator of her estate, assets, and business dealings.

RELATED: 10 Ridiculously Expensive Things That Britney Spears Bought

The Trouble

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The issue is that Britney Spears wants to handle her own affairs now, but isn’t being permitted to do so. Her father has stepped down from this responsibility, and in 2019 he appointed Britney’s long-time ‘care manager’ Jodi Montgomery.

Britney Spears is completely at odds with the way her father handled her conservatorship, and she claims he is trying to profit from the management of her fortune. She has therefore essentially gone ‘on strike’ and has refused to release new music or take on new projects until she knows her father won’t be the beneficiary of her efforts.

According to People, there was an appeal made in August of 2020 that revealed Britney is strongly opposed to her father making a come back and resuming his reign over her finances. They report her attorney as stating; “We are now at a point where the conservatorship must be changed substantially in order to reflect the major changes in her current lifestyle and her stated wishes.”

Britney Takes Action

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Realizing that she needs to take action in order to have her wishes known, Britney Spears filed an official motion on November 4th, 2020, to permanently remove her father as the co-conservator of her estate. Her attorney requested Bessemer Trust Company be the sole conservator.

Unfortunately, and without explanation, on November 10th, a judge denied Britney’s request to remove her father from his position of control.  According to the New York Times, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny stated; “That’s the subject of another discussion down the road.’

Entrapment

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Britney Spears is so uncomfortable with her father maintaining such control over her life that she refuses to earn a dollar that he would benefit from. She has boldly refused to work, as she has no interests in generating income for the man that is causing such strife in her life.

While it wasn’t quite the good news they were looking for, February of 2021 did see a baby step in the right direction. The judge upheld the partnership between Jamie Spears and Bessemer Trust, which ultimately stood firmly in the way of Britney’s father’s request to take over full and total control.

The AV Club notes that Britney’s lawyer, Samuel Ingham, told the media, “It’s no secret that my client does not want her father as co-conservator, but we recognize that removal is a separate issue. So this is, at least, not a step backward.”

The Real Deal

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To demonstrate why Britney is feeling so entirely trapped by this process and why she’s trying to so dramatically make a change, a closer look at the control factor of this arrangement is recommended.

As the conservator, her father was responsible for all of her finances. She has to pay for her own legal team, and she then has to pay for her father’s legal team, as well. Oddly, this means her father is also getting paid a salary to oversee the conservatorship.

Entertainment Tonight reports that “in 2019, Spears paid $1.2 million in legal fees. From that sum, Jamie was paid $128,000 as a conservator. And that’s just one year.”

This is further highlighted by an article posted by the NY Times which describes the arrangement by stating;  “The appointed conservators have control over everything from Spears’s mental health care to where and when she can travel; the setup means that Spears’s conservators are required to submit detailed accounts of her purchases to the court — even minor charges like $5 purchases at Sonic Drive-In or Target.”

Father Vs Daughter

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Jamie Spears maintains that everything he has done and all the decisions he has made were out of love for his daughter. He says he has saved her from financial demise, and he has always been motivated by what’s best for her. Unfortunately, the media and Britney’s fans and followers just can’t get behind this concept.

The documentary was very damning and revealed that Jamie had very little to do with Britney’s career, especially in its infancy, and it casts a healthy dose of doubt on what his true intentions really are. By all accounts, he was not the most supportive of her career in any sort of direct way.

With all of this doubt cast upon the entirety of this conservatorship, fans have taken it upon themselves to safeguard their favorite popstar in the only way they know how.

They’ve formed the #FreeBritney movement, and it’s loud and strong. Her fans are showing an undying, unfaltering level of love and commitment to the betterment of this situation. They want to see Britney be free and healthy again, and they’re determined to bring enough attention to this matter to force a change.

READ NEXT: #FreeBritney Movement Has Lawmakers Reassessing Conservatorship Laws

Sources: Glamour, Entertainment Tonight, NY Times

 

 

 

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