If you, like many others, have not stopped thinking about Britney Spears since Framing Britney Spears came out, you may be eager to learn that there should be some very important updates in the conservatorship happening soon. On Tuesday, Vanity Fair reported that Britney Spears will speak to the court about her conservatorship. A Los Angeles Superior Court Judge set a hearing for June 23 to allow Britney to talk about the “status of the conservatorship”, which may be one of the most significant updates since #FreeBritney began. Her lawyer, Samuel Ingham III, did not indicate what the pop star plans to say at the hearing, although TMZ is reporting she may declare that she wants her father out as her conservator.
That seems likely, as it’s not exactly a secret that Britney and her father don’t see eye to eye, especially when it comes to the conservatorship. In November 2020, Igham said during a hearing, “My client has informed me that she is afraid of her father,” and warned, “She will not perform again if her father is in charge of her career.” He also said Britney is a “high-functioning conservatee” who has not spoken to her father “in a very long time.” (Jamie Spears’ attorney argued the reason Britney and Jamie haven’t spoken is because Ingham prevented it.)
Recently, Britney has been advocating for her father to be removed as her conservator. In March, she petitioned to remove Jamie from his role as conservator and replace him with Jodi Montgomery, the temporary conservator who took over when Jamie stepped down as conservator of Britney’s person due to health reasons in September 2019. (He remained co-conservator of her estate along with Bessemer Trust.) A judge denied the petition to remove Jamie but appointed Bessemer Trust as co-conservator, which has yet to actually take effect because the attorneys are still arguing over it.
Since the conservatorship came under renewed public scrutiny in 2019, Britney has remained largely silent on the matter, posting cryptic videos on her Instagram in smudged eyeliner and various crop tops, the color of which some fans believed to be a code signifying she needed help. In March 2021, Spears broke her silence regarding the Framing Britney Spears documentary, saying on Instagram that although she “didn’t watch the documentary”, she was “embarrassed by the light they put me in”. She said she “cried for two weeks.”
And what about Britney’s mom? In November 2020, Lynne Spears advocated for the end of the conservatorship, saying in a statement that her daughter’s relationship with her ex-husband had become “toxic” and that it was “time to start fresh.” But her motives might not be so pure, either. Earlier this week, Jamie Spears’s lawyers came for Lynne after she attempted to object to the firm’s $890,000 in attorney fees, writing in a court filing obtained by PEOPLE that she “not acting in the best interests” of Britney. The filing also states, “Despite having zero involvement in her daughter’s conservatorship until very recently, Lynne Spears is asserting claims as if she were a party directly involved in the litigation (which she is not).” Legal burn.
The response also accuses Lynne of taking advantage of Britney’s personal troubles: “Lynne Spears is the one who exploited her daughter’s pain and trauma for personal profit by publishing a book about the Conservatee.” The book in question is titled Through The Storm, and in it, Lynne reveals the age at which Britney lost her virginity and alleges the singer used cocaine shortly after.
In March, after Jamie’s role as conservator came under fire yet again after House Republicans called for a Congressional hearing on conservatorships, citing the #FreeBritney movement, an attorney for Jamie Spears said, “Any time Britney wants to end her conservatorship, she can ask her lawyer to file a petition to terminate it; she has always had this right, but in 13 years has never exercised it.” The attorney added, “Britney knows that her daddy loves her, and that he will be there for her whenever and if she needs him, just as he always has been — conservatorship or not.” True or not, I don’t want to hear the word “daddy” come out of a lawyer’s mouth—just not my kink.
Even though legal experts have argued that a conservatorship is highly unusual for someone as young and active as Britney, and disability rights advocates have pointed out that guardianships (such as a conservatorship) can be very harmful and lead to abuse, her father has consistently maintained that Britney reserves the right to petition the court to end the conservatorship at any time, and has chosen not to. Hopefully, after hearing from Britney herself, we will finally have answers and can (my brain: don’t say it, don’t say it)
leave Britney alone feel assured that she is making the decision she feels is best for her.
Images: DFree /Shutterstock.com
As you probably know by now, the legal battle over Britney Spears’ conservatorship seems to be never-ending, and every few months, we get new updates on the latest developments in this arrangement that has now lasted over a decade. The back-and-forth legal drama can be exceedingly difficult to understand, but overall, it’s clear that Britney is unhappy with the current situation.
This summer, there was a slew of updates. Britney requested that her temporary conservator, Jodi Montgomery, be made permanent, rather than her father Jamie being reinstated. (Due to health reasons, Jamie stepped down as her personal conservator in 2019, but has remained the conservator of her estate.) Jamie pushed back on this, requesting that he and his former partner Andrew Wallet (who stepped down in March 2019) be returned to their former positions. While Britney said she is fine with the conservatorship being extended until 2021, she and her father disagreed on whether the conservatorship proceedings should be made public, with Britney’s team opposing a motion to seal court documents. And around the same time, we also found out for the first time that Britney’s mother and sister are involved in her financial trust. A lot going on, to say the least, but it didn’t end there.
Since that tumultuous period in August, things have been fairly quiet in regard to Britney’s case, until this week. On Tuesday, Britney’s attorney, Samuel D. Ingham III, spoke on her behalf in a court hearing, telling the judge, “my client has informed me that she is afraid of her father,” adding that Britney made it clear “she will not perform as long as her father is in charge of her career.” Capping off his statement in a way that really got the fans’ attention, Ingham said “we are really at a crossroads.” The good news? Now I know I’m going to rewatch Crossroads later. The bad news? Literally everything else.
Of course, it’s disappointing for Britney fans to hear that she likely won’t be getting back to music any time soon, but the revelation that she is afraid of her father is alarming. Ingham also added that Britney has not spoken to her father in “a long time.” Britney’s mother Lynne, who is divorced from Jamie, also issued a statement through her attorney, calling Britney and Jamie’s relationship “toxic” (no pun intended, I assume), and saying “it has broken Lynne’s heart that it has come to this point.”
Jamie Spears’ attorney fought back at these claims, blaming the lack of communication on Britney’s attorney, and arguing that there is not “a shred of evidence to support my client’s suspension.” For the time being, Judge Brenda Penny seemed to agree, declining the request to suspend Jamie Spears from his role in the conservatorship. She did, however, agree to “hear further arguments for his suspension or removal,” which Britney’s attorney said he would provide. Basically, this fight isn’t over yet.
But despite Jamie Spears remaining in his role in the conservatorship, there was one silver lining in the judge’s rulings this week. Previously, Britney had requested that corporate fiduciary Bessemer Trust be named a co-conservator in her finances, and that request was approved this week. For now, they’ll have to try to cooperate with Britney’s father, but that may be changing depending on the outcome of the additional upcoming hearings, the first of which has been scheduled for December 16.
Meanwhile, after a brief hiatus, Britney has been back on Instagram lately, posting more of her trademark chaotic content. She resurfaced last week with a video, in which she assured her fans that she’s “the happiest I’ve ever been in my life.” Good for Britney; that makes one of us!
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Since then, she’s posted several times, including a video of her dancing, some inspirational messages, and a minute-long clip of her posing with a flower. Whatever Britney is going through in court right now, at least her social media is as delightfully strange as ever.
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Images: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com; britneyspears / Instagram
Even though Britney Spears has been under a conservatorship since 2008, it wasn’t until the #FreeBritney movement gained traction in 2019 that it became publicly talked about. Since then, many fans have expressed concern about Britney’s treatment, and it appears we’re finally getting some clarity on the situation, directly from Brit. Last week, we broke down numerous new developments in her conservatorship situation, including her sister Jamie Lynn’s appointment as a trustee, and more importantly, Britney’s wish that her father not be involved in the future.
Last month, a judge extended Britney’s conservatorship for a further six months, leading the ACLU to offer her their services, but new paperwork this filed week suggests that she is actually fine with the current arrangement. On Monday, her attorney wrote that Britney’s conservatorship is “voluntary,” and that she “wishes to exercise her right to nominate a conservator of the estate.” Last month’s court filings showed that Britney was “strongly opposed” to her father returning to his previous role as her conservator, which he vacated in 2019 for health reasons. While Britney’s father controlled her finances for more than a decade, it was recently reported that she wished for a “qualified corporate fiduciary to fill that role,” and in this week’s filing, she officially requested that Bessemer Trust Company, N.A. be appointed her new conservator. Bessemer Trust is a worldwide financial management company that handles over a hundred billion dollars with thousands of clients.
Along with the question of Jamie Spears’ future involvement in the conservatorship, Britney and her father also disagree on whether or not these proceedings should be public. Jamie Spears recently filed a motion to seal court documents pertaining to the case, but Britney’s team opposed this motion. In a filing, they wrote “Britney herself is vehemently opposed to this effort by her father to keep her legal struggle hidden away in the closet as a family secret.”
Last month, Britney’s father spoke to The New York Post, calling the #FreeBritney movement “a joke,” saying that “these conspiracy theorists don’t know anything.” He also hit back at accusations that he’s stolen or mismanaged his daughter’s money, claiming that he has to “report every nickel and dime spent to the court every year.” Last April, as #FreeBritney became a trending topic, Britney spoke out on her desire for privacy, telling her fans on Instagram “what I need right now is a little bit of privacy to deal with all the hard things that life is throwing my way.”
But a lot has happened in the last year, and in a rare public comment on the fan support for Britney, her attorney wrote on September 3rd that the #FreeBritney movement is “Far from being a conspiracy theory or a ‘joke’ as James reportedly told the media, in large part this scrutiny is a reasonable and even predictable result of James’ aggressive use of the sealing procedure over the years to minimize the amount of meaningful information made available to the public.”
While Jamie reiterated that the court proceedings should be “private,” Britney’s attorney wrote in the latest filing that Spears “welcomes and appreciates the informed support of her many fans.” A final decision about Britney’s conservator going forward is expected this fall.
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Images: DFree / Shutterstock.com
In case you’ve been been focused on other things lately (can’t imagine what), there’s been a lot going on this summer with Britney Spears. We’ve come a long way from last spring, when it was rumored that she was being held against her will in a mental facility, or that she escaped said facility, but things with her conservatorship are as complicated as ever.
As you may know, Britney Spears has been under a wide-ranging conservatorship since 2008, with her father Jamie overseeing nearly every facet of her life as the conservator. For the last decade, Jamie Spears has had control over his daughter’s finances and medical care, as well as career decisions like tours and residencies, and even whether or not she is allowed to drive a car. It’s an extreme situation, and over the years, the conservatorship has been the source of many court decisions and legal battles.
For many years, Britney’s father served as co-conservator with attorney Andrew Wallet, who handled Britney’s finances, but after Wallet stepped down last year, Jamie Spears assumed total control. Later in 2019, Jamie temporarily stepped down from his role as Britney’s conservator, due to some life-threatening health issues—and Britney doesn’t want him back in charge. Since Jamie stepped down, Britney’s manager, Jodi Montgomery, has served as her conservator, and Britney is now seeking to make Jodi’s position permanent. In a court filing earlier this month, Spears’ team wrote that “Britney is strongly opposed to James’ return as conservator of her person.” (James = Jamie.) Britney is requesting that Jodi Montgomery remain in her role as conservator, along with a “qualified corporate fiduciary” to handle her financial matters. Britney’s attorney also noted that he expected Jamie would “aggressively” push back against these requests. He was right—Jamie Spears has already reportedly filed a request that he and Andrew Wallet be reinstated.
There are a lot of factors at play here, and the situation is made even more complicated by the bigger picture with Jamie Spears, who was investigated last year after allegations that he abused Britney’s son Sean. It’s still not entirely clear what truly happened, but both of Britney’s sons were granted a three-year restraining order barring Jamie from seeing them. Britney’s request to have her father permanently removed came last week, as a judge extended the conservatorship for six months, until early 2021. Reportedly, Britney’s attorneys now have a few weeks to file any official motions regarding the conservatorship, which would include permanently removing Jamie. Theoretically, that would be decided sometime in the fall, so stay tuned.
But that’s not all that’s happening with Britney’s conservatorship. Turns out, Britney’s mom and sister are both getting involved in her finances. Way back in 2004, Britney established a trust to protect her assets for herself and her sons, and to “hold and manage her material financial assets during her lifetime, and provide distribution of those assets upon her death.” The trust includes traditional assets like property and investments, but also “furniture and furnishings, clothing, jewelry, vehicles and accessories to vehicles, books, paintings, and other artwork, and other tangible articles of personal, domestic household, or recreational use or nature, together with any insurance on such property.” Basically, everything.
Since 2008, the trust has been controlled by Britney’s conservators (aka mostly her dad), but this week The Blast obtained new documents that revealed Britney’s sister, Jamie Lynn, was also made a trustee in 2018. Her appointment was signed off by Jamie Spears and Andrew Wallet, who were co-conservators at the time. According to the documents, the SJB Trust (Sean, Jayden, Britney) lists Britney as the sole beneficiary while she is alive, but if she were to die, the money would basically go straight to her kids. But Jamie apparently requested approval to create “blocked accounts,” which are accounts with specific limitations on who can access them, and how much they can withdraw.
So Jamie Lynn has secretly been involved in Britney’s financial arrangements for the past two years, and now Britney’s mom is finally getting in on the family affair. Last month, Lynne Spears filed a request to be named an “interested person” in Britney’s trust, which wouldn’t give her control over anything, but would ensure that she was notified of “all matters” involving the trust.
Like many of the developments in this story, it’s extremely difficult to figure out who has good intentions here. The family has rarely spoken publicly about the situation, but last month, Jamie Lynn Spears passionately spoke out on behalf of her sister on Instagram, defending Britney’s privacy and calling her a “strong, badass, unstoppable woman.” At the time, we didn’t know that Jamie Lynn was involved in Britney’s trust, but hopefully she’s actually helping.
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Similarly, we have no idea why Lynne Spears is choosing to get involved now. Whatever the reasons behind these recent moves, it seems like the next few months will be an important time, with Jamie’s ultimate involvement clearly a point of contention.
While the Spears family battles for control of Britney’s affairs, Britney has a powerful force in her corner: the ACLU. Last week, as the news about Britney requesting her father’s removal broke, the ACLU tweeted an offer of support, saying that “People with disabilities have a right to lead self-directed lives and retain their civil rights.”
People with disabilities have a right to lead self-directed lives and retain their civil rights.
If Britney Spears wants to regain her civil liberties and get out of her conservatorship, we are here to help her. https://t.co/uLRakw7c4C
— ACLU (@ACLU) August 19, 2020
What will happen in the next six months? There’s no way to know, but regardless, hopefully Britney is safe, happy, and healthy, and also, I would love some new music.
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Images: Kobby Dagan / Shutterstock.com; commentsbycelebs / Instagram; ACLU / Twitter
UPDATE: After last week, I had hoped Britney Spears might take her Hawaiian vacation as an opportunity to reset, recharge, and take a break from Instagram. Sadly, not so. Reader, I am not feeling great about Britney right now, and her Instagram content certainly isn’t helping. On Monday, she blew up her feed with a series of questionably-lit selfies, including a bunch with her boyfriend, and three nearly identical photos of herself that look like driver’s license pictures. In one of the captions, she talked about how her dress is from the 1920s, and she “tore off the bottom ruffle of the dress and made it into a head band,” which like, cool, I guess. She says she’s “never worn something so distinguished,” which I feel like there’s no way that’s true, but good for her, she’s rocking sustainable fashion.
While all of these photos definitely made me raise an eyebrow, the more troubling development came on Tuesday night, when Britney’s son Jayden took to Instagram Live to address a lot of stuff that’s been going on. Jayden, for reference, is 13 years old, which I think is way too young to be on Instagram live, but I’m sure there are a lot of strange things about his life.
In his video, which went on for almost 20 minutes, Jayden said that his mom might not ever return to music, and that his dad “is literally Jesus.” I’m glad he likes K-Fed, and while the uncertainty surrounding Britney’s return to music makes me sad, it might be for the best. But by far the craziest things he said during the Live video were about his grandfather, Jamie Spears. In response to the question “is your grandpa a jerk?” Jayden didn’t hold back: “Yeah, he’s a pretty big dick. He’s pretty f*cking gay as sh*t. He can go die.”
Uhhh I feel like maybe someone should take this kid’s phone away? First of all, the use of “gay” as a slur is really disheartening, and I know he’s young, but it makes me nervous that no one has told him this isn’t okay. But aside from that, Jayden clearly has nothing good to say about Britney’s dad. This comes after an incident last fall, when Kevin Federline accused Jamie Spears of abusing his other son, Sean, and breaking down a door to get to him after he tried to get away. Those accusations went away without any charges being filed, but clearly it wasn’t a good situation.
From there, the video just got weirder, with Jayden using his information as a scheme to get more followers. When someone asked about the situation with his mom, Jayden said that she’s not being controlled, but that he would share more about what’s going on with her if his account gets to 5000 followers. While I don’t love this, I also won’t deny that I immediately followed him. If Jayden is willing to tell us the truth, who am I to get in the way?
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: As a life-long Britney Spears fan, it’s been an eventful journey over the last few years, to say the least. From the cancelation of her second Vegas residency to the many troubling rumors fueling the #FreeBritney campaign last year, our girl really just needs a win. So far, her 2020 has been relatively drama free, but a series of confusing Instagram posts this week have raised some questions about what, exactly, is going on with Britney right now.
After going nearly a month without posting on IG, Britney made her return on Wednesday, posting five times in like, 12 hours. Any time she starts posting on Instagram, my
spidey Britney sense starts tingling, and I have to get to the bottom of what’s going on. Five posts in one day would be a lot coming from anyone (except for my aunts—ladies, you can post less!), but these specific posts from Britney left us with a lot to talk about.
First, she posted an IGTV video reading some fan letters from The Zone, a Britney Spears pop-up that’s in LA through this weekend. (Yes, it’s an entire pop-up of spaces inspired by Britney videos, and also yes, I’m mad I didn’t get to go.) She says that unfortunately she couldn’t make it to the pop-up because she’s “been dancing” and broke her foot, and we can see that she has a big white cast with the word “STRONGER” written in green marker. I love that she has her own song title on the boot, truly a self-referential icon. I’m a little confused why the cast meant she couldn’t make it to the pop-up, but whatever, I’m not here to fact-check Britney.
The letters she reads are actually really sweet, and considering how the last couple years have been dominated by drama in her personal life, it’s nice to hear Britney reconnect with her fans. No matter what she’s been through, millions of people love her, and I hope that makes her feel ~stronger~.
Personally, I was more than happy to take Britney’s word for the fact that she broke her foot while she was dancing, but later on Wednesday, she decided we should all have the actual proof. She posted this video of her dancing for the first time in six months, and left in the part at the end where she literally snaps her ankle. Like, you can actually hear it in the video!! Britney, I love you, but this is not something the world needs to see. If you want to see Britney dancing without a care in the world, but aren’t a fan of watching people break their limbs, just pause it after the first 15 seconds. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
Note to anyone reading this: if you ever break a bone and there’s a video of it, please don’t post the video on Instagram. Literally no one needs to see that, and it’s low-key traumatic.
Britney had a very busy Wednesday, seeing as she’s also, apparently, in Hawaii on vacation right now. Is she in multiple places at once? When was the video reading the letters filmed? How long ago did she break her foot? Whatever, not the point. She also posted a pic of a church, and another cute little montage of her on the beach, but this video was what really got my attention:
Brit, you good? She tells us that she’s in Maui and hears thousands of birds, sounding like the world’s most congested Animal Planet host. Seriously, can someone get her a Sudafed, please? She shows us the birds, then yells “THEY’RE SO LOUD” in her classic terrible British accent. This video is definitely giving me weird vibes, and the caption doesn’t help: “PS if you’re a bird then I’m a bird too …. pssss I get to be loud too wheeeee”. I hope this is just her attempt at a joke, but I’m definitely confused.
From her Insta posts, it’s hard to know what’s really going on with Britney Spears right now, but it’s actually a pretty important time for her in her continued legal struggles. Earlier this month, a judge extended her conservatorship until April 30th. The conservatorship, which gives her father and a lawyer control over her assets, has now been in effect for over 12 years. There will be another court decision in the coming months about whether the arrangement will be extended past the end of April.
As always, I just want the best for Britney Spears, so I’m hoping these Instagram posts are just Britney’s wacky sense of humor, and I hope her foot heals up soon. Now if you’ll excuse me, I gotta go listen to “Me Against The Music” 100 times in a row.
Images: Shutterstock; britneyspears / Instagram
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