LOS ANGELES (AP) — Britney Spears wants to be freed from her father.
The pop star’s moves have been missing from stage and screen in a career hiatus that shows no signs of ending, but she’s been making all kinds of maneuvers in court in an attempt to gain greater control over her life and money after 12 years of a court conservatorship run mainly by her dad, James Spears.
Tuesday afternoon, a Los Angeles judge will hear arguments on Spears’ requests, the boldest of which would remove James Spears as co-conservator for what his daughter says is an unwillingness to share control of her more than $60 million in assets.
The conservatorship, known in many states as a guardianship, began in 2008 when she was having serious mental struggles and an often public meltdown. The arrangements are normally limited to people with severely diminished ability to make decisions for themselves, and are meant to be temporary, but Britney Spears has remained under court control longer than anyone expected.
She has acknowledged that the arrangement was necessary when it began, and probably saved her career, and she remained silent both in public and in court for nearly all of its existence.
But starting in August she began publicly seeking to choose who oversaw her life and money, asking for greater transparency in the court’s often secret moves, and even declaring that she was sympathetic to fans who have increasingly demanded in protests and online posts that those in control must #FreeBritney.
James Spears and a co-conservator, attorney Andrew Wallet, ran the conservatorship for 11 years. Last year, Wallet stepped down, leaving James Spears entirely in charge. He soon temporarily stepped down as conservator of Spears’ person, citing health reasons, but kept his role as conservator of her finances.
In August of this year, Britney Spears said she strongly objected to her father returning as conservator of her person, and wanted to make her approved replacement, Jodi Montgomery, permanent in the role.