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The corruption behind Britney Spears’ conservatorship is exposed in Netflix’s new documentary, “Britney vs. Spears”


In the recently-released Britney vs. Spears documentary, filmmakers unpack the 13 years of conservatorship Britney Spears has been under. The documentary reveals the ins and outs of the conservatorship, including the restrictions on the global pop star’s personal and financial decisions. The documentary exposes the corruption that occurs in Britney’s conservatorship and the difficult journey it took for her to break free from her father’s control. 

Britney Spears was and still remains an unstoppable force in the music industry as well as a world-renowned superstar. Britney’s rise to fame was rapid and with that she became dependent on her partying to cope with this sudden change. She was under constant attack and criticism by the tabloids and that only increased Britney’s dependence on partying. By 2004, Britney was one of the biggest female artists of her generation. Her personal life became filled with drama and a never-ending story in the media. 

The pop icon went through a very public, long, and burdensome divorce with American Rapper Kevin Federline along with a custody battle for her children. Britney filed for divorce in Nov. 2006, and it was not finalized until July 2007 with the couple sharing equal custody of the children. In the documentary, Adnan Ghalib, paparazzi photographer, and longtime friend of Britney’s, reveals the mental toll this public affair took on Britney. Ghalib says that Britney struggled immensely during this time and had no one in her close circle of family or friends that she could trust. Britney broke down because of this mental burden multiple times, creating the void where her father, Jamie Spears, entered and secured his control. 

In early Feb. 2008, Jamie Spears was granted a temporary conservatorship over his daughter Britney. Shortly after, this became a permanent conservatorship. 

A conservatorship is a legal process of taking a person’s capability to make decisions on all aspects of their life. Jamie was granted both a conservatorship of the person, and of the estate. In the conservatorship of the person, Spear’s father gained control over all personal decisions made in her life including healthcare and the medications Britney took. In the conservatorship of the estate, Jamie was granted control over all of Britney’s finances. 

Conservatees usually are unable meet the basic standards of living for themselves such as providing food, clothing, shelter, and healthcare. Conservatees rarely ever have a job, yet Britney was making her father and his team of professionals on the conservatorship over 3 million dollars a year. 

Jamie was able to control how much Britney worked, despite whether she wanted to or not. All he needed was the approval by the medical professional team that she was fit for work. Under Jamie’s reign in the conservatorship, Britney toured her album “Circus,” was a judge on “The X Factor,” had a four-year residency in Las Vegas, and went on a world tour. The documentary outlined that people behind the scenes believed this to be a burden on Britney’s mental health, but she did not speak out as she feared her father would limit her access to seeing her children. 

Finally, in 2019, Britney’s second Las Vegas residency was cancelled due to her father being hospitalized. The Netflix documentary displays that this is when fans became even more suspicious about Britney’s well-being and began analyzing every interaction that she would make on social media. 

The documentary exposes the numerous times that Spears had asked the court for the removal of her father as the conservator, or the removal of the conservatorship in general. The public’s knowledge of the corruption behind the conservatorship has increased in the past few years. Even more media traction occurred when Britney made a public statement at a court hearing regarding her court-ordered conservatorship on June 23, 2021. 

Britney asked the court to remove her father as the conservator first and pushed for the conservatorship to be ended as a whole. She explains to the court the misery the conservatorship caused her. 

“I just want my life back. It’s been 13 years and it’s enough,” Britney said.

Britney says she is tired of feeling alone and asks the court to reconsider her father’s involvement in the conservatorship. 

On Sept. 29, 2021 Jamie Spears was suspended from the conservator position in his daughter’s conservatorship. 

It was difficult for Britney to be able to remove her father as the conservator because the court and her team of doctors previously deemed Britney to have multiple mental health concerns.  Britney struggled to have her voice heard in prior court meetings due to the pre-existing knowledge of her mental health issues. Her father also used her mental illnesses to discourage the court from believing her in the past.  Britney’s struggle with the US legal system and her mental illnesses has shed light on a larger issue of the injustice in the legal system for people who suffer from mental illness. 

It was a long journey for Britney to get the removal of her father as conservator, making this a groundbreaking victory for the pop star. A long legal battle to end the conservatorship all together remains ahead, but for now her conservatorship will remain under a temporary conservator. 

Featured Image courtesy of Wallpapersden

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The corruption behind Britney Spears’ conservatorship is exposed in Netflix’s new documentary, “Britney vs. Spears”