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A Judge Has Ruled Britney Spears Can Hire Her Own Lawyer for Conservatorship Case

Britney Spears has been permitted to choose her own layer in the continuing legal battle over the conservatorship she has been under for 13 years, which the star called “abusive” and signalled she wished to end without evaluation at a hearing last month.

At a court hearing in Los Angeles today, Judge Brenda Perry ruled that former federal prosecutor Mathew Rosengart will be allowed to take the place of Spears’ longtime court-appointed lawyer Samuel D. Ingham III, who tendered his resignation last week. Judge Perry accepted Ingham’s resignation, along with the resignation of wealth management firm Bessemer Trust, the company that was set to be the co-conservator of Spears’ finances.

Spears reiterated her wish for the conservatorship to end at the hearing, pleading to take back control of her life and to cut ties with her father, co-conservator Jamie Spears. As the New York Times reports, Spears told Judge Perry the conservatorship had ruined her life, said “I’m here to get rid of my dad,” and indicated she wanted to press charges against her father for alleged conservatorship abuse. “This conservatorship is literally allowing my dad to ruin my life,” she reportedly said. According to the Times, Spears’ new lawyer Rosengart asked for Jamie Spears to resign during the hearing but his lawyer declined.

Elsewhere in her testimony today, Spears accused her father of controlling her behaviour in multiple ways, including allegedly taking her driver’s license, controlling what she ate. She reportedly claimed to have been forced to take psych evaluations against her will, and said her conservators lied to her, saying that if she complied with evaluations she could “have her life back,” Variety reports.

Spears remotely addressed a courtroom in Los Angeles about her conservatorship last month on June 23, publicly sharing her feelings about it for the first time in over a decade and calling for an end to what she called an “abusive” arrangement.

Spears’ father Jamie has had control over the singer’s finances and career since 2008, stepping away temporarily in 2019 due to health reasons. Britney last attempted to have him removed permanently in August last year. Back in March, Ingham filed a petition on Spears’ behalf to have her father permanently removed as her conservator. Earlier this month, that request was denied for a third time.

Shortly after Spears’ appearance, her father Jamie called for an investigation into the pop star’s claims of abuse. Earlier this month, The New Yorker published an in-depth report into the conservatorship, detailing some of the alleged mistreatment Britney experienced throughout.

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