After a long-running legal battle, the father of Britney Spears will reportedly step down as her conservator.
Jamie Spears says he “intends to work with the Court and his daughter’s new attorney to prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator”.
Britney Spear’s lawyer Mathew Rosengart told the website “we are pleased but not necessarily surprised” by the development.
The conservatorship has controlled Britney Spears’s life and finances since 2008. James Spears had power over her life choices from 2008 to 2019 and controlled her financial decisions along with his attorney in that same time.
He stepped down as the conservator of his daughter’s personal matters in 2019 and was going to share power over her finances with an estate management firm, but it has withdrawn from the arrangement.
Spears’ fans celebrated the news, with actor Jude Demorest revealing that people broke out into applause at a Los Angeles restaurant upon hearing the news.
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BREAKING: Britney Spears’s father Jamie Spears agrees to step down as conservator
Britney Spears’s father has reportedly agreed to step down as her conservator.
James Spears says he “intends to work with the Court and his daughter's new attorney to prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator”, TMZ reported on Thursday (12 August) citing new legal documents.
The Independent has contacted James Spears and Britney Spears’s respective attorneys for more information.
Clémence Michallon has the breaking news.
Britney Spears’s father has reportedly agreed to step down as her conservator.
Britney ‘pleased but not surprised’ as fight continues, says lawyer
Attorney Mathew Rosengart said that Britney’s father stepping down as conservator wouldn’t stop them from investigating the conduct of Jamie Spears over the past 13 years.
"We are pleased but not necessarily surprised that Mr. Spears and his lawyer finally recognize that he must be removed. “We are disappointed, however, by their ongoing shameful and reprehensible attacks on Ms. Spears and others,” Mr Rosengart told TMZ.
“I look forward to taking Mr. Spears’s sworn deposition in the near future.”
Jamie Spears’ decision to step down comes just days after a judge denied a request to expedite the case
The news of Britney’s father stepping down comes just days after the judge overseeing the star’s conservatorship denied a request to expedite a hearing on the status of Spears’ father, Jamie.
The ruling by Judge Brenda Penny in the Los Angeles probate court on Monday 9 August denied the request made by Spears’ new lawyer, Mathew S Rosengart, to bring the case forward.
“Every day that passes is another day of avoidable harm and prejudice to Ms Spears and the Estate,” Rosengart said last week (5 August), as he called for the immediate suspension of the conservatorship or a quicker hearing date.
Her lawyer’s request to remove her father as conservator of the estate had been supported by Spears’s doctors, mother and her current personal conservator, Jodi Montgomery.
A prepared statement about Jamie’s decision to step down (via CNN ) said: “There are, in fact, no actual grounds for suspending or removing Mr. Spears as the Conservator of the Estate” and “it is highly debatable whether a change in conservator at this time would be in Ms. Spears’ best interests”.
“Nevertheless, even as Mr. Spears is the unremitting target of unjustified attacks, he does not believe that a public battle with his daughter over his continuing service as her conservator would be in her best interests. So even though he must contest this unjustified Petition for his removal, Mr. Spears intends to work with the Court and his daughter’s new attorney to prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator.”
Britney Spears’ lawyer issues statement, declaring this a “major victory"
Britney Spears’ lawyer, Mathew Rosengart has issued a statement to Deadline in response to the news.
You can read it in full here:
“This is a major victory for Britney Spears. I announced in Court on July 14 that, after 13 years of the status quo, it was time for Mr. Spears to be suspended or removed as conservator and that my firm and I would move aggressively and expeditiously for that outcome.
Twelve days later, my firm filed a Petition for Mr Spears’s suspension and removal based on strong, insurmountable legal grounds, which were unequivocally supported by the law and all parties involved, including Jodi Montgomery, Britney Spears, and her medical team.
We are pleased that Mr. Spears and his lawyer have today conceded in a filing that he must be removed. We are disappointed, however, by their ongoing shameful and reprehensible attacks on Ms. Spears and others.
We look forward to continuing our vigorous investigation into the conduct of Mr. Spears, and others, over the past 13 years, while he reaped millions of dollars from his daughter’s estate, and I look forward to taking Mr. Spears’s sworn deposition in the near future.
In the interim, rather than making false accusations and taking cheap shots at his own daughter, Mr. Spears should remain silent and step aside immediately.”
Famous fans react to the news: ‘Wow. It actually happened’
Famous fans have been reacting to the news on social media. Pop star Ann Marie wrote: “Wow. It actually happened. I’m so happy for you. We love you Britney Spears’. She also added: “I honestly can’t believe what Britney has been going through. How is this s*** even allowed?”
Dionne Warwick tweeted: “It’s wonderful so many have supported Britney! I’ve just heard the news! Wonderful things can happen when we stand together.”
Jude Demorest added: “Sitting in a restaurant in LA right now and a man yells ‘Britney’s free! Britney’s free everybody!’ and the whole restaurant cheered. That’s impact.”
You can see their reactions below:
Britney Spears responds to news by posting on Instagram: ‘Letting go is freedom'
Around the same time as Britney’s father Jamie was filing court papers, Britney posted a video to Instagram in which she can be seen dancing and seemingly alluding to the news.
Captioning the post, Britney wrote: “You can see the last dance in red top I’m very hesitant when dancing, but letting go is freedom! I’m not sure exactly why I’m being so cautious...it might be my left foot that was broken talking to me! You can tell when I turn but hopefully I will let go thoroughly and follow through soon.”
You can see the post here:
On Monday (9 August), Spears posted on social media that she was going to appear less on Instagram and accused the media of being “pretty nasty and horrible” in regards to their reporting of the conservatorship.
Spears wrote: “In a system where I’ve felt completely hopeless for so long, at least I do have a platform to share.”
“As Selena Gomez says it best - The world can be a nasty place ... I know it ... you know it … kill them with kindness...Unfortunately the news has been pretty nasty saying horrible and mean lies about me so I’m gonna post a little less from now on.”
You can see that post below:
Questions remain over how long it will take Jamie Spears to step down fully
While Jamie Spears has agree to step down as her conservator, he’s said in court documents that he will do so “when the time is right” but added: “the transition needs to be orderly”.
The documents asks that “all interested parties to meet and confer in order to resolve those pending matters in the best interests of Ms. Spears”.
As yet, no timetable has been specified as to when he will formally step down.
The legal document added: “When these matters are resolved, Mr. Spears will be in a position to step aside. But there are no urgent circumstances justifying Mr. Spears’ immediate suspension,” hinting that it won’t happen immediately.
“An orderly transition based on cooperation would most certainly be in the best interests of Ms. Spears”, it continued. “Regardless of his formal title, Mr. Spears will always be Ms. Spears’ father, he will always love her unconditionally, and he will always look out for her best interests.”
It is unlikely that Spears’ legal team will accept a lengthy transition. Britney’s new lawyer, Matthew Rosengart, last month declared that he was working “aggressively” to remove her father from her conservatorship.
Rosengart was appointed after Judge Brenda Penny gave the pop star permission to choose a new attorney to represent her for the first time since 2008. The singer’s former attorney Samuel D Ingham resigned after almost 13 years; it came just came just a day after Spears’ manager Larry Rudolph quit, and a week after the co-conservator of her estate resigned.
Speaking to reporters on Monday (19 July), Rosengart said that he was working to move things forward for the singer and thanked Spears’s fans for their support.
“First, I once again want to thank Britney Spears for her courage and for her strength,” Rosengart said, in a video circulated on Twitter.
“I want to thank Judge Penny for her courtesy welcoming my firm and I into this case. And I also want to thank Britney Spears’s fans and supporters. The outreach and support for my firm, myself, and most importantly, Britney, has truly been overwhelming.”
He continued: “Finally and the last thing I’m going to say about this matter… my firm and I are moving aggressively and expeditiously to file a petition to remove Jamie Spears unless he resigns first.”
Paris Hilton responds: ‘I’m so happy to hear this news'
Britney’s long-term friend Paris Hilton has also responded to the news on social media.
“I’m so happy to hear this news,” she wrote. “It’s been so long overdue but I’m so glad that Britney is on her way to finally being free. Sending so much love!”
Hilton shared the publication’s article on Twitter, writing that she found it “heartbreaking to read”.
The 40-year-old wrote: “Heartbreaking to read @RonanFarrow & @jiatolentino’s in-depth @NewYorker article. Britney is so strong & has been through so much.”
She continued: “I’m so proud of her for using her voice & speaking her truth. She deserves her freedom & happiness.”
Fans react to the news: “Victory"
Fans have also been reacting to the news on social media with many declaring this moment a “victory”. The #FreeBritney Movement have been campaigning for the musician to be freed from the conservatorship for years. You can read Chris Stevenson’s article here about their campaign here:
‘I am traumatised’, Spears said in her testimony. ‘I’ve lied and told the whole world I’m okay and I’m happy’
You can also see a full round-up of the fan reaction on social media here:
Jamie Spears will work ‘to prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator’
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