Britney Spears' 12-year conservatorship was just extended. Here's a look inside the arrangement that prevents her from legally controlling her life and $59 million fortune.
- Britney Spears' conservatorship was recently extended until April 20, 2020.
- The conservatorship, also known as a legal guardianship, was implemented in 2008 after Spears experienced several mental breakdowns.
- Under this arrangement, Spears has no legal control over her estate and financial and personal assets - those rights were granted to her father and a lawyer.
- While supporters of the #FreeBritney movement say Spears is being manipulated, those involved in the conservatorship say she's very involved in decision-making.
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Britney Spears hasn't legally controlled her life and fortune in 12 years, and it seems that won't be changing anytime soon.
On Tuesday, an LA County judge extended the singer's conservatorship until April 20, 2020, reported Sarah Guy for International Business Times. It's yet to be decided whether the conservatorship will end or be extended after this date, Guy wrote, as those involved are working to figure out the best course of action for Spears.
The conservatorship - a legal guardianship typically enacted for those incapable of making their own decisions - was approved by the court in 2008 after Spears had several public mental breakdowns. The arrangement put her estate, financial assets, and some personal assets under control of her father and a lawyer.
Since its implementation, the conservatorship has generated a lot of controversy among Spears' fans. Some think that she's being controlled and manipulated, which has fueled the #FreeBritney movement. But those close to Spears have told several media outlets over the years that the conservatorship is meant to help the pop icon and that she is very involved in business decisions.
A representative for Spears didn't immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment on this story.
Here's a look inside the complex arrangement that is Spears' conservatorship.
In the late 2000s, Britney Spears suffered from several highly-publicized mental breakdowns.
This tumultuous period led to Spears' court-approved conservatorship, which was implemented at the end of 2008.
Under the conservatorship, Spears has no control over financial or personal decisions. That power was granted to her father, Jamie, and her attorney.
Exact details of the arrangement aren't known, but all of Spears' financial decisions must be documented in court reports.
The conservatorship isn't just intended to prevent Spears from making poor financial and business decisions, but to protect her from potentially toxic people.
But not everyone feels the conservatorship is a good thing. Some fans think Spears is being controlled, pushing the conservatorship in and out of the spotlight with the #FreeBritney movement.
Sources close to Spears have insisted that she hasn't been manipulated, saying fans don't grasp the mental health and legal specifics behind the conservatorship.
And Spears has remained incredibly active in her career since her conservatorship was implemented.
But in the beginning of 2019, Spears took a step back from her career to check into a mental health facility, causing #FreeBritney supporters to express concern yet again.
Around this time, Spears' lawyer resigned as co-conservator but didn't give a reason for his resignation. This left Jamie as the sole conservator.
During a status hearing in May 2019, Spears reportedly asked the judge to consider ending the conservatorship.
In a second hearing later that year in September, Jamie asked to be temporarily removed as a conservator. The role was then appointed to Spears' care manager.
Jamie received another court win that year after suing "Absolute Britney" blogger Anthony Elia, a source of the #FreeBritney movement, accusing him of spreading false and defamatory information.
Spears' mother, Lynne Spears, made attempts in 2019 to get involved in the conservatorship. She's also reportedly engaged with the #FreeBritney movement.
In February 2020, an LA county judge extended Spears' conservatorship until April 30, 2020.
To end the conservatorship, Spears needs to prove she doesn't need it to get through life.
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