Jamie Spears and lawyers took more than $36 million from Britney Spears’ estate throughout the course of her conservatorship. Her father even used some of his earnings in his role as conservator to pitch his own reality show — this, all according to new court documents, filed ahead of Wednesday’s hearing in the pop star’s continuous legal battle.
The docs were filed by the singer’s attorney, Mathew Rosengart, in response to Spears’ father asking the court to have his daughter continue paying his legal fees, despite being suspended from her conservatorship, before it was terminated. (At the time Spears’ father filed that petition, Rosengart called the request an “abomination.”)
The star’s legal team states that Spears’ father paid himself “at least $6 million” from his daughter’s estate in his role as conservator, plus “petitioned for fees to be paid to dozens of different law firms” for “more than $30 million.”
The documents lay out a 13-year payment plan that states Spears’ father earned a total of $6,314,307.99 throughout the conservatorship, most recently including a payment of $192,000 in 2020.
“Mr. Spears, an ignominiously-suspended conservator — of a conservatorship that has been terminated — now seeks to siphon even more money from his daughter,” the new docs state. Later, the filing goes onto say, “Mr. Spears should be required to pay his legal fees… if he has already dissipated those funds, he should consider hiring other, less expensive counsel whom he can afford.”
Spears’ father was his daughter’s conservator for all 13 years, ever since she was placed under the court-ordered arrangement in 2008. Previously, attorneys for Spears’ father have said that his salary in his role as conservator was always approved by the court. The conservatorship was terminated in Nov. 2021.
The new docs also state that Spears’ father attempted to pitch his own cooking show in 2015 to networks such as the Cooking Channel, which would have been titled, “Cookin’ Cruzin’ and Chaos with Jamie Spears.” The pop star’s legal team states that he had approached a music supervisor who worked for his daughter to ask for help in recording a promo reel.
“Mr. Spears also exploited his role as Conservator to prevail upon Ms. Spears’s tour staff to help him turn his catering business into a Hollywood career,” according to the court docs.
The singer’s legal team also filed a declaration to Sherine Ebadi, a former FBI special agent who works in the forensic investigations and intelligence practice of Kroll Associates, Inc., which was retained last summer by Rosengart’s law firm, Greenberg Traurig LLP, to help conduct an investigation into Spears’ father’s management of the estate. It remains ongoing. The declaration supports Spears’ objections and opposition to her father’s petition to have her pay his legal fees.
Ebadi’s declaration highlights the “autocratic ways” Spears’ father ran his daughter’s conservatorship, making note of his relationship with the pop star’s former business manager, Tri Star Sports and Entertainment. The document states Spears’ father elevated “his own interests above his daughter’s while ingratiating himself to others, including Tri Star and its founder Lou Taylor, to whom he had previously been financially indebted.” (Tri Star was recently subject of a lengthy New York Times exposé, which scrutinized Taylor’s financial management during the conservatorship.)
Of the many findings outlined, the declaration states that Spears’ father had hired counsel for Taylor to take legal action against one of Spears’ fans and #FreeBritney supporters, Bryan Kuchar. The court docs state that internal emails indicate that Spears’ former attorney, Vivian Thoreen, had expressed that Taylor should pay the legal fees, since there was no connection “between Britney and the lawsuit.”
The new declaration also states that Ebadi has corroborated the New York Times’ reporting that Britney Spears was eavesdropped on in her own home with a secret listening device, which monitored attorney-client privileged communications with her counsel “at the direction and with the approval of [her father] Mr. Spears.”
Variety has reached out to Charles Harder, an attorney for Tri Star, and Alex Weingarten, an attorney for Spears father. Neither immediately responded for comment.
Rosengart did not respond to Variety‘s request for additional comment, in regards to the new filings.