Britney Spears' father has agreed to step down as his daughter's conservator, according to legal papers filed Thursday in response to the singer's petition for his suspension from the role. In the documents, Jamie Spears says he wants an "orderly transition" to a new conservator.
The development marks a major victory for Britney Spears, who has long wanted her father removed from the 13-year legal arrangement. In June, the internationally famous pop star spoke out passionately in court, calling the conservatorship "abusive" and saying it was doing her more harm than good. #FreeBritney supporters are celebrating Thursday's news, and the singer's mom, Lynne Spears, said she is "pleased."
"Lynne Spears is pleased Jamie has agreed to step down," her lawyer, Gladstone N Jones III, told Us Weekly in a statement on Thursday. "Lynne entered into this conservatorship to protect her daughter almost three years ago. She has accomplished what she set out to do."
The latest legal salvo from the singer's father, as reported by Variety, reads that "there are, in fact, no actual grounds for suspending or removing Mr. Spears as the Conservator of the Estate under Probate Code section 2650. And it is highly debatable whether a change in conservator at this time would be in Ms. Spears' best interests."
"Nevertheless, even as Mr. Spears is the unremitting target of unjustified attacks, he does not believe that a public battle with his daughter over his continuing service as her conservator would be in her best interests," the filing to the Los Angeles Superior Court continues.
"So even though he must contest this unjustified Petition for his removal, Mr. Spears intends to work with the Court and his daughter's new attorney to prepare for an orderly transition to a new conservator. As the Court has likely surmised, before Ms. Spears' new attorney arrived, Mr. Spears had already been working on such a transition with Ms. Spears' former court-appointed counsel, Sam Ingham."
Representatives for Britney Spears' new attorney, Mathew S. Rosengart, and for Jamie Spears didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Recently, Rosengart filed a petition to have Jamie Spears removed from her controversial arrangement, saying she has "sufficient capacity" to handle her own finances.
Although Spears is a 39-year-old mother of two, the pop star hasn't been allowed to handle her own finances since her father was appointed her conservator back in 2008. During the June hearing, the singer painted a bleak picture of her life since her father, Jamie Spears, was appointed her conservator in 2008.
"I've told the world I'm happy and OK," the singer said. But that cheery public image was a lie, she added. "I'm traumatized. I'm not happy, I can't sleep ... I'm so angry it's insane."
Spears also said the conservatorship's control of her life went well beyond her finances. She said she has an IUD birth control device, and even though she wants to have more children, she can't get permission to have a doctor remove it. She also said that her boyfriend, Sam Asghari, isn't able to drive her places.
Britney Spears fans have long pushed for her father's removal as conservator, appearing at rallies and advocating for her widely on social media using the hashtag #FreeBritney. Their reaction on after the news broke Thursday was joyous, though some may be jumping the gun a little.
"Britney free before the ball drops for 2022 I think!" wrote one Twitter user.
High-profile supporters, including singer Dionne Warwick, made their voices heard too. "Wonderful things can happen when we stand together… but not too close because I have just learned that some of you do not bathe," Warwick tweeted, referring to recent headlines about celebrities sharing their hygiene habits.