WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Britney Spears’ father, Jamie Spears, said he will step down as conservator for his daughter after months of public pressure.
- The pop singer’s new lawyer filed a petition to replace her father as conservator a few weeks ago.
- Britney Spears claims her father has used the conservatorship for personal gain.
After months of public pressure from supporters of Britney Spears, Jamie Spears, the singer’s father, signaled in a legal response Thursday that he intends to step down as conservator of the singer’s estate, according a court filing obtained by CNN.
“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,” the document, filed in response to a petition for Spears to be removed as conservator, states.
“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,” the filing continues. “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.”
The move comes days after Judge Brenda Penny denied a petition filed by Britney Spears’ attorney Mathew Rosengart to move a September 29 hearing about the case up to August 23 in an effort to remove her father as conservator as soon as possible.
Despite being disappointed by the ongoing attacks on Britney Spears from the elder Spears’ camp, Rosengart said in a statement to CNN, “We are pleased that Mr. Spears and his lawyer have today conceded in a filing that he must be removed. It is vindication for Britney.”
The lawyer added that they will continue the “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.”
Jamie Spears has been a co-conservator of his daughter’s estate — estimated at $60 million — for more than ten years. In July, Britney Spears said in a hearing that she wanted to press charges against her father for “conservatorship abuse” and called the 13-year conservatorship a “f—ing cruelty.”
On Thursday, Jamie Spears defended his actions as conservator and called for an orderly transition to a new conservator following the resolution of some outstanding matters in the case.
Supporters of the #FreeBritney movement have been closely monitoring the long-term conservatorship, which began in 2009. In February, New York Times Presents documentary “Framing Britney Spears,” was released, prompting more media coverage about the arrangement.