There's monumental news surrounding the Britney Spears conservatorship: after 13 long years, a Los Angeles judge has officially terminated the conservatorship. The news comes following a September move to suspend the pop star's father, Jamie Spears, from his role in the legal agreement.
Assets will be moved from the previously appointed temporary conservator into Spears's own trust, and for the first time since 2008, the singer is free to make her own medical, financial and personal decisions.
Though the performer was not present in person or virtually at the hearing on Friday, November 12, she did respond to the termination on social media, posting: "Good God I love my fans so much it’s crazy 🥺❤️ !!! I think I’m gonna cry the rest of the day !!!! Best day ever … praise the Lord … can I get an Amen 🙏🏼☀️🙌🏼 ???? #FreedBritney"
After the ruling, Spears's attorney Mathew Rosengart said, per CNN: "As of today, effective immediately, the conservatorship has been terminated as to both the person and the estate. This is a monumental day for Britney Spears."
Rosengart added: "What's next for Britney, and this is the first time this could be said for about a decade, is up to one person, Britney.
The conservatorship controversy was exacerbated by a viral Britney Spears documentary and subsequent media attention throughout the year. Undoubtedly, the #FreeBritney movement and global support for the singer must have played a role in not only her father's decision to step down but the termination of the conservatorship as a whole.
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Britney Spears conservatorship—what happened
Earlier this summer, the US judge handling Britney Spears' conservatorship case denied the star's request to remove her father as the conservator of her nearly $60 million estate. The news came after the star's shocking June 2021 testimony in which she addressed the court herself for the first time.
This is when the music icon admitted that she just "wants [her] life back," according to The New York Times (opens in new tab). She added: "I truly believe this conservatorship is abusive."
Following Spears' public breakdown in 2007, her father was appointed to control her estate. What was intended to be a temporary move lasted for 13 years, something the singer has objected to. Jamie Spears attempted to gain sole responsibility for his daughter's finances earlier in 2021 but was denied, and a third party will continue to intervene.
Variety first broke the news that Britney Spears would head to court this summer. Samuel Ingham, Britney's probate attorney at the time, allegedly asked to set a date on an expedited basis.
What happened during the Britney court hearing?
Spears was scheduled to address the court around 1:30pm PT in Los Angeles on June 23, though she ended up speaking roughly an hour later. According to CNN (opens in new tab), the singer requested that her statement not be closed to the public, however, cameras were not allowed inside during her testimony.
Outside of the courthouse, a #FreeBritney rally took place where fans gathered to show their support for the pop star. Following Spears' statement, the court took a recess and ended the audio feed publicizing the rest of the hearing.
Britney Spears' statement in court:
According to CNN (opens in new tab), Britney Spears appeared virtually during the court hearing, during which she said of her 13-year-long conservatorship: "I'm traumatized. I'm not happy, I can't sleep. I'm so angry, I'm insane," when speaking about her 13-year conservatorship.
Spears reportedly made several concerning allegations during her testimony against those in charge of her conservatorship, including that she was put on lithium against her will.
Spears also alleged that she is not able to start a family with her boyfriend, Sam Asghari, because of an IUD that she is reportedly not allowed to have removed under the conservatorship. She said: "I want to be able to get married and have a baby. I was told I can't get married. I have an IUD inside me but this so-called team won't let me go to the doctor to remove it because they don't want me to have any more children. This conservatorship is doing me way more harm than good." She even alleged that she's not allowed to ride in Asghari's car alone with him throughout her statement.
The star also claimed that she felt forced to perform in 2018 at her Las Vegas residency. "If I didn’t do any of my meetings and work from eight to six at night, which is 10 hours a day, seven days a week, no days off, I wouldn’t be able to see my kids or my boyfriend. I never had a say in my schedule."
Spears finished her testimony with an emotional plea: "I deserve to have a life. I’ve worked my whole life. I deserve to have a two- to three-year break and just, you know, do what I want to do. But I do feel like there is a crunch here. And I feel open and I’m okay to talk to you today about it. But I wish I could stay with you on the phone forever, because when I get off the phone with you, all of a sudden all I hear all these nos—no, no, no."
Britney Spears' documentary: the star responds
The "Framing Britney Spears" documentary examined the pop star's complicated relationship with her father and the strains that the conservatorship has put on her life. Months after its release on Hulu, Spears took to Instagram to address her thoughts.
"I didn't watch the documentary but from what I did see of it I was embarrassed by the light they put me in ... I cried for two weeks and well....I still cry sometimes !!!! I do what I can in my own spirituality with myself to try and keep my own joy ... love ... and happiness," she wrote.
Another film addressing the issue just hit screens on September 28. The Netflix Britney documentary, Britney v. Spears, is a widely-discussed phenomenon.
The teaser features an actual voicemail, dated all the way back in 2009, from Britney to her attorney, she says: “Hi, my name is Britney Spears. I called you earlier. I’m calling again because I just wanted to make sure that during the process of eliminating the conservatorship…”
Britney vs Spears pic.twitter.com/vpGjzzSjd8September 21, 2021
Will Britney Spears ever perform again?
News began to circulate in 2020 that Spears would not take the stage until she had control over her finances and life choices. A week ahead of her court hearing, she took to Instagram to address fans about whether or not she'll get back to entertaining—which leaves more questions than answers.
"I'm having fun right now," she said in her video clip. "I'm in a transition in my life and I'm enjoying myself, so that's it."
As summer 2021 continued, Britney became more vocal on social media about her situation, stating that things were heading in the right direction. Fans and peers are remaining hopeful and supportive of Britney getting the justice and freedom she deserves.
Britney Spears and her family—where do they stand?
Following the news that her conservatorship will soon come to a close, it appears Spears is posting plenty of carefree snaps on Instagram...with a few exceptions. Though we catch her dancing and sharing quotes, she also took her social media accounts to let her family know how disappointed she is with their behavior.
"This message is to my family ... for hurting me deeper than you'll ever know !!! I know the conservatorship is about to be over but I still want justice !!! I'm only 5'4" and I've played the bigger person my entire life ... do you know how hard that is ???"
She wrote the scathing post alongside a photo of a typewriter, while also mentioning how she is tired of people using her when it is convenient for them.
Christina Izzo is the Deputy Editor of My Imperfect Life.
More generally, she is a writer-editor covering food and drink, travel, lifestyle and culture in New York City. She was previously the Features Editor at Rachael Ray In Season and Reveal, as well as the Food & Drink Editor and chief restaurant critic at Time Out New York.
When she’s not doing all that, she can probably be found eating cheese somewhere.
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