Britney Spears settles legal dispute with estranged father over conservatorship

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Britney Spears and her estranged father have agreed to settle a legal dispute that continued between them even though it had been more than two years since a court terminated the conservatorship that put him in control of the US pop star’s life.

Terms of the settlement between the singer of the chart-topping hit Womanizer and Jamie Spears weren’t disclosed in statements that their attorneys distributed to media outlets on Friday.

Spears’ attorney, Matthew Rosengart, would only say that the agreement had given his client the “freedom” that “she desired”. “She will no longer need to be involved with court or entangled with legal proceedings in this matter,” Rosengart added.

Jamie Spears’s attorney Alex Weingarter, meanwhile, told CNN that his client was “thrilled that this is all over”.

Yet the entertainment news outlet TMZ – which has accurately reported on Britney Spears’ conservatorship battle – said it spoke to sources with direct knowledge of the settlement who said it required the 42-year-old musician to pay Jamie Spears’ legal bills, which exceed $2m. That amount is in addition to a few million dollars she had already paid with respect to her own attorneys’ bills, according to the outlets’ sources, who described Spears as “furious” over the financial hit.

Spears spent nearly 14 years under a conservatorship before a judge in Los Angeles ordered its dissolution in November 2021.

In her memoir, The Woman in Me, Spears wrote about how the conservatorship governed nearly her every waking moment, from decisions about her diet and artistry to family planning. She wasn’t even allowed to drive a car or drink coffee, she has said.

“I begged the court to appoint literally anyone else – and I mean anyone off the street would have been better” for the job of conservator, Spears wrote in her memoir, as CBS News and other outlets have noted. “[But] my father was given the job.”

Spears’ memoir also explained how “the conservatorship stripped me of my womanhood [and] made me into a child”.

“I became more of an entity than a person onstage,” said Spears, who was born in Mississippi and raised in Louisiana. “I had always felt music in my bones and my blood; they stole that from me.”

Despite the eventual end of the conservatorship, there remained unresolved legal battles centering on attorneys’ fees and allegations from Britney Spears that Jamie Spears had exploited his role to unjustly enrich himself. Jamie Spears denied wrongdoing, with Weingarten insisting that his client only “wants the best for Britney – nothing less”.

The settlement announced Friday eliminated the possibility of a trial that would rehash the conservatorship in painstaking details while pitting father against daughter in perhaps the most public setting yet.


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