Britney Spears accused her father, Jamie Spears, of abusing his power as her conservator in a court hearing on Wednesday, July 14, Us Weekly can confirm.
“I’m here to get rid of my dad and charge him with conservatorship abuse,” the 39-year-old singer said, adding that she is “extremely scared” of Jamie, 68. “This conservatorship has allowed my dad to ruin my life.”
She added through tears that she wants to “press charges” against her father. “If this isn’t abuse, I don’t know what is. … I thought they were trying to kill me.”
During the hearing, she was also granted the right to choose her own lawyer for the first time since the conservatorship began. Samuel Ingham III, the court-appointed attorney who had been handling her case since 2008, resigned in June. On Wednesday, Judge Brenda Penny approved his resignation and allowed Britney to replace him with Mathew Rosengart, a former federal prosecutor.
The latest hearing comes three weeks after the pop star’s explosive testimony on June 23. Among other things, she asked the court to end her conservatorship without forcing her to undergo another evaluation.
The Grammy winner also admitted that she didn’t know she could have requested to end the conservatorship earlier. “I’m sorry for my ignorance, but I didn’t know that,” she told Penny. “It’s embarrassing and demoralizing what I’ve been through, and that’s the main reason I didn’t say it openly. I didn’t think anybody would believe me.”
The “Lucky” songstress has been under the conservatorship since February 2008. Since then, she has been unable to make major financial decisions without the approval of her father, who was for a time also in charge of her person. Jodi Montgomery took over that aspect of the conservatorship in September 2019, after Jamie, 68, underwent a life-threatening surgery for colon issues.
Since Britney gave her testimony, there have been many developments in the ongoing battle. On July 5, her longtime manager, Larry Rudolph, resigned after two decades of working with the Louisiana native. In his letter to Jamie and Montgomery, Rudolph claimed that the singer told him she wanted “to take an indefinite work hiatus.”
Jamie and Montgomery have also sparred over who is at fault for Britney’s displeasure with the conservatorship arrangement. In court documents obtained by Us filed on June 29, Jamie claimed that the care manager was the one responsible for any mistreatment described by Britney.
Montgomery responded with her own statement one day later, saying that she has been a “tireless advocate” for Britney’s interests. “While she does not control Britney’s financial assets, she is responsible for her personal care, and if Britney wants any issue brought up to the court, Ms. Montgomery is and has always been ready, willing, and able to do so,” the care manager’s lawyer, Lauriann Wright, told Us in a statement on June 30.
The same day, Penny denied Britney’s November 2020 request to have her father removed as co-conservator. The order had already been decided months ago but had not yet been signed. According to Mina Sirkin, a probate and trust attorney in Los Angeles, the signing of the order was likely delayed to give the parties time to file any objections.
With reporting by Marjorie Hernandez