Britney Spears’ attorney filed a petition Thursday asking the court to immediately remove her father as conservator, noting that an investigation may be required into his financial dealings while in control of her estate.
Mathew Rosengart, who was appointed to the singer’s case last month, asked Los Angeles Superior Judge Brenda Penny to decide on the request to replace James “Jamie” Spears as conservator as soon as possible. He said that Britney Spears "continues to suffer ongoing harm each day that Mr. Spears remains in place as the Conservator of the Estate — emotionally, psychologically, and financially."
The filing said that “Mr. Spears has also enriched himself at the expense of his daughter,” noting that Jamie Spears pays himself $2,000 more a month than he gives in allowance to his daughter.
“Most recently, and by way of one illustration only, Mr. Spears objected to his daughter’s wish in late July to take a short vacation, disapproving of the expenditure that would have come from his daughter’s own, hard-earned money,” the petition said.
She was ultimately given permission to take a vacation to Maui, Hawaii, but the dispute "caused understandable anguish" for the singer.
Removal was critical to Britney Spears’ wellbeing and also for an investigation into her father’s use of her money, the filing said.
Representatives for Jamie Spears did not immediately have a comment when reached by NBC News Thursday.
Rosengart also notes that Jamie Spears paid his daughter’s management company an excess of $300,000 in 2019, without any additional services tied to the payment. The money came after Britney Spears declared a hiatus from performing and her father apparently failed to negotiate the term of her deal or go elsewhere, the filing said.
The resulting amount was “more than twice Ms. Spears’s annual allowance out of her Estate,” the filing said. Rosengart called it a decision that prioritized the management company over Britney Spears and was “contravention of Mr. Spears’s fiduciary obligations and responsibility as conservator to elevate Ms. Spears’s best interests over his own or those of others in his circle.”
“An investigation is warranted but can only commence fully once Mr. Spears is removed,” the motion said.
If a new hearing could not be scheduled before the conservatorship’s next hearing on September 29, Rosengart called for the court to suspend Jamie Spears’ estate powers in the interim.
“Although a proper conservatorship exists to protect a conservatee from undue influence, it is apparent that this conservatorship has allowed would-be influencers to take control of the Estate and exploit Ms. Spears, often for their own benefit,” the filing said. “The suspension and ultimate removal of Mr. Spears will be the first step towards rectifying that abuse.”
Rosengart filed a petition in late July asking the court to replace Jamie Spears as conservator with a professional accountant, Jason Rubin, calling it an "objectively intelligent preference to nominate a highly qualified, professional fiduciary in this circumstance.”
Declarations were included from Britney Spears’ mother, Lynne Spears, and her conservator-of-the-person, Jodi Montgomery, supporting the request to remove Jamie Spears.
Both women testified in statements dated Thursday that his relationship with Britney Spears is detrimental to the singer's wellbeing."
Montgomery, who was appointed to Britney Spears' case in 2019, said she has personally witnessed the relationship, calling their dynamic "not psychologically healthy" for the singer's mental health. She called Jamie Spears' removal critical to Britney Spears' mental health and added that it is her belief that no relative should be in charge of the case.
Lynne Spears noted that she became involved in her daughter's case during a "time of crisis" that began in 2018 and continued into the next year. She said that in that period Britney Spears was being treated by a "sports enhancement" doctor hired by Jamie Spears who was "prescribing what I and many others thought to be entirely inappropriate medicine to my daughter, who did not want to take the medicine."
She also said that Jamie Spears' "absolutely microscopic control" through threats and coercion has reduced his relationship with his daughter to nothing more than "fear and hatred."
Lynne Spears testified in her declaration that Jamie Spears has used his daughter's medical aides, household staff and security detail to "inform on and report back to him each and every detail of every action."
"Such scrutiny is exhausting and terrifying, like living in custody," Lynne Spears said.