- 24 Jun 21
The next court hearing date for Spears case is scheduled for July 14th.
Britney Spears has finally had the chance to speak publicly about the court-mandated conservatorship which as controlled and suffocated her life for the last 13 years.
Addressing the LA probate court where the case to remove her father Jamie Spears as conservator of her person and estate is being heard, Spears spoke passionately for over 20 minutes, asking the judge to end the 'abusive' conservatorship.
"I’ve been in denial; I’ve been in shock; I am traumatised," the pop icon said, during the remote hearing. "I just want my life back."
She spoke about issues with rehearsals for her since cancelled Vegas residency shows in 2018, where her managers claimed she wasn’t taking medication or cooperating in rehearsals. However according to Spears, "I wasn’t good — I was great", working hard on choreography and teaching her dancers herself. She says that a few days after a number of creative disagreements over rehearsals, she was put on lithium by her therapist against her wishes, which made her feel drunk.
She described how after this incident, she was forced to undergo a psychiatric evaluation and stay at a mental health facility for a time in 2019, which she viewed as punishment for standing up for herself.
The singer also detailed how she was refused permission by her guardians to remove an IUD so she could have a third child, and that under the terms of the conservatorship, she is not able to have any more children or get married.
"This so-called team won’t let me go to the doctor to take it out because they don’t want me to have children, any more children," she said in her remarks.
"I want to be able to get married and have a baby,” Spears said. “I was told right now in the conservatorship I am not able to get married or have a baby."
She also apologised to the court for her ignorance, saying that she didn’t know she could petition to end the conservatorship - something her lawyer should definitely have informed her about.
"It’s embarrassing and demoralising what I’ve been through, and that’s the main reason I didn’t say it openly. I didn’t think anybody would believe me," she explained.
"All I want is to own my money...and for this to end...and for my boyfriend to be able to fucking drive me in his car. And honestly...I want to be able to sue my family," she said.
For the last two years, lawyers on behalf of Spears have been fighting to make several changes to the court-ordered conservatorship she's been under since 2008, after what Rolling Stone once called "the most public downfall any star in history".
Conservatorships are usually reserved for people who are extremely ill or elderly, and are no longer equipped to handle their own affairs, be that financial or their own well-being. Jamie Spears has been his daughter’s permanent personal and financial conservator since 2008, a role he shared with lawyer Andrew Wallet. Another lawyer, Samuel D. Ingham III, serves as Spears’ legal advocate and oversees the actions of her conservators.
However, Wallet resigned as co-conservator in March 2019. Then Jamie Spears temporarily stepped down as sole conservator in September that same year due to health problems, with the court appointing a licensed conservator, Jodi Montgomery to take his place. And in August 2020, Ingham petitioned the courts on Spears’ behalf to make Montgomery her permanent and sole conservator, saying the singer ‘strongly opposed’ her father resuming control of her and her estate.
At present, Jamie Spears is co-conservator of her estate along with Bessemer Trust, and his request to be sole conservator was denied on February 11th this year.
Spears was 26-years-old when she was put into the conservatorship, far younger than most people who end up in these kind of legal care situations. Though she was put under one due to her severe mental health issues in 2008, she was back to work, recording, touring and promoting a new album within months, and has worked continually for much of the last 13 years.
In her testimony, she questioned what kind of state California was if she was able to be working, making money, and functioning and still put in this conservatorship.
“If I can work, I shouldn’t be in this conservatorship,” Spears said.
She requested that the judge presiding over the case, LA County Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny, simply end her conservatorship without evaluating her. "I don't want to be evaluated, to be sat in a room with people for hours a day, like they did me before," she explained. "And they made it even worse for me after that happened."
After Spears speech concluded, Jamie Spears’s attorney requested a brief recess. Twenty minutes later, when the court hearing resumed, she read a brief statement from Jamie: “He is sorry to see his daughter in so much pain. Mr. Spears loves his daughter and misses her very much.”