And I ready to take the stage again. Am I going to take the stage again when I ever take the stage again? I have no idea. I’m having fun right now. I’m in transition in my life and I’m enjoying myself.
So that’s pop megastar Britney Spears saying she doesn’t know if she’ll ever perform again just days before she is set to testify in her ongoing legal battle with her father, Jamie, over her conservatorship. Joining us now to tell us what we can expect is attorney and Northwestern University adjunct law professor Andrew Stoltmann. Andrew, these are emotional hearings, let alone adding and the mega wattage of a celebrity and the very public fight with her father. What do you expect?
This is going to be a combustible hearing in Los Angeles on Tuesday. Any time you factor in money, family, fame, fortune, it’s going to be combustible. Now, the thing is, we don’t know exactly what’s going on because Britney didn’t file a formal motion requesting this hearing. Maybe she verbally asked the judge for it. So there’s kind of a big cloud of uncertainty as to what exactly is going on on Tuesday. But we do know Britney is going to testify.
Yeah. And we’re all waiting to hear what she has to say. Can you explain what the significance is that she’s asking for her father to be removed, but she’s not petitioning for an end of the conservatorship?
Yeah, what’s interesting. These are voluntary conservatorships in most states. We call them guardianships. She has a guardianship with respect to her personal well-being as well as her finances. And the beef seems to be for Britney with her father. We don’t know what he’s doing. A lot of times in these cases, we see somebody either not managing money correctly absconding with it. We have no idea if that’s the case here, but I think on Tuesday we’ll find out a lot more.
And her attorney put out a statement here saying that the father would love nothing more than for Britney not even to need a conservatorship, saying, quote, Whether or not there is an end to the conservatorship really depends on Britney. If she wants to enter conservatorship, she can file a petition to end it. Jamie is not suggesting that he is the perfect dad or that he would receive any father of the year award. Like any parent, he doesn’t always see eye to eye on what Britney may want.
But Jamie believes every single decision he has made has been in her best interest. How up to her do you really think this is?
Well, it really is to a certain extent, because it is a voluntary conservatorship. But now to end it, you have to get the judge’s blessing. And there’s been so much information, misinformation with respect to Miss Spears from stuff like framing Britney Spears and these documentaries. They have done so much damage. What’s interesting is she’s not performing, but by all accounts, she seems to be doing well. Remember the meltdown she had in 07 when she hit the car with her umbrella and she shaved her head?
not seeing stuff like that. She’s not performing, which has her fans upset, but in the same sense, she seems to be doing all right.
So you don’t think this whole documentary that came out on her and everything and the hashtag free Britney movement, these fans who have become activists, you don’t think that this is helping her cause at all?
No, it’s stupid. She actually went on her Instagram after the framing Britney Spears documentary came out and she said she cried for weeks with the way she’s being portrayed. I understand that her fans love her. A lot of us do. She’s thirty nine years old and she hasn’t performed in years. But back off, she seems to be doing well. And that’s the only thing that the judge cares about in Los Angeles.
OK, and I saw that she has paid two million dollars in legal fees for her father to pay his attorneys to fight her. And then she pays her attorneys to fight them. And she’s paying for the whole thing. And she’s not performing.
Exactly. Now, look, Forbes says she has a net worth of 60 million dollars. But if you don’t have money coming in from touring, chances are you might have a squeeze on your finances to be paying her lawyer bills, her dad’s lawyer bills, plus her day to day maintenance. It’s got to be a costly proposition for Miss Spears.
Yeah, I mean, could the dead end up paying any of these legal fees on his own if he ends up getting removed?
Not at the end of getting removed, but if the judge determines that he’s breached his duties, then Houston, he has a major, major problem, not just civil.
And real quickly, just while I have you here, how concerned should folks be about conservatorships in general? I mean, if they’re not Britney Spears, if they’re not a multimillionaire star? I mean, these can be troublesome, can’t they?
They can be troublesome. There are a lot of abuses, but in the same sense for children, for mentally disabled older people, they’re excellent. Unfortunately, the high profile examples of abuses get a lot of publicity. There are problems and issues, but they really do serve an important role for some members of society.