Britney Spears' father, Jamie Spears, will remain a co-conservator of her estate against her wishes, a judge ruled Tuesday.
The pop star had petitioned for her father to be suspended as a conservator as soon as a corporate fiduciary was put into a position of control. Although Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda J. Penny agreed to appoint Bessemer Trust as a co-conservator, she declined to remove Jamie Spears from his role.
- 2August 26, 2020
Attorneys for Britney and Jamie Spears did not respond to requests for comment.
The Associated Press reported that in court, Britney Spears' attorney, Samuel D. Ingham III, told Penny that the singer fears her father and will not perform again as long as he remains involved with her conservatorship. Spears announced last year that she was on an "indefinite work hiatus."
"My client has informed me that she is afraid of her father," Ingham reportedly said. "She will not perform again if her father is in charge of her career."
However, Jamie Spears' lawyer, Vivian Lee Thoreen, reportedly called the allegation "hearsay" and defended her client's record as a co-conservator. According to the AP, Thoreen said that Britney Spears had been in debt, and under her father's watch, her net worth has ballooned to over $60 million.
In August, a judge extended to 2021 the current terms of Britney Spears' conservatorship. Jodi Pais Montgomery was appointed to serve as conservator in place of Spears' father in September 2019, and the pop star had petitioned for Montgomery to be permanently placed in charge of her personal affairs instead of her father. Spears' attorney also asked the court to permanently allow a "qualified corporate fiduciary" to preside over the singer's estate. Prior to Tuesday's ruling, Jamie Spears had been the sole financial conservator.
For more than a decade, Britney Spears, 38, has been under a conservatorship, which means that she does not control her personal or financial affairs. Her attorney stated in court documents in August that phase one of the conservatorship was considered "triage," in which her conservators "rescued her from a collapse, exploitation by predatory individuals and financial ruin." Phase two involved her return to performing, the document states, noting that over the past several years, Spears was able to "regain her position as a world-class entertainer."
Now, however, "the conservatorship must be changed substantially in order to reflect the major changes in her current lifestyle and her stated wishes [not to perform]," a court document read.