Britney Spears' court-appointed attorney filed a petition to resign from her conservatorship on Tuesday, the latest in a series of actions after the pop singer's statements in court criticizing the legal arrangement that oversees her finances and affairs.
In motions filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, Samuel Ingham III requested that the court appoint a new counsel for Spears and said that his resignation would take effect as soon as that happened. Spears was dismissive of Ingham during her June 23 court testimony, in which she condemned the conservatorship and requested Judge Brenda Penny to dismiss it. She also said she wanted the court to allow her to hire her lawyer.
Britney Spears' lawyer is upset about her statement in court
Spears has been represented by Ingham during her 13-year conservatorship. The court approved the plan in 2008, naming her father, Jamie Spears, as her sole conservator. Last month, Spears' working relationship with Ingham was called into doubt when she gave explosive remarks, calling her conservatorship "abusive" and spoke in front of the court for the first time in her 13-year conservatorship.
During her testimony to end her conservatorship, in which the pop star detailed being forced to perform and take lithium, as well as being barred from removing an IUD so she could have a child with boyfriend Sam Asghari - and her father, Jamie's role in all of it - Spears said Ingham fears if she speaks out and advised her to keep her testimony to herself.
Britney Spears testified that, although she interacts with Ingham on a regular schedule, she wanted the option to acquire her attorney; after her evidence, Ingham informed the judge, Brenda Penny, that if requested, he would withdraw from the case.
Spears mostly targeted her father during her 24-minute court statement, but she also told the judge that Ingham had previously told her not to come forward with her conservatorship allegations. She requested that the judge give her the option of choosing her lawyer rather than having one selected by the court.
Spears informed the judge that she had developed a connection with her attorney, "Sam," as she referred to him throughout the hearing and that they communicated three times a week. However, during her statement, Spears appeared to go rogue; and it became obvious that she had not contacted Ingham about her testimony, as the lawyer told the judge that he was unaware of what she was about to say.
While Ingham has not responded to any of Spears' accusations, it is the responsibility of an attorney to advise his client of her rights, which in this case includes the ability to request for termination. Spears should have been notified of her rights regularly over 13 years, according to a legal expert, Variety reported.
More people involved in the conservatorship will resign
According to TMZ, Ingham is enraged by Britney's court declaration and claims she had no idea she had the power to end the conservatorship. Britney was given options by Ingham regularly, including the option of terminating the conservatorship, but she refused to do so.
A source told TMZ that Britney Spears discussed removing Jamie from the conservatorship with Ingham, but she never intended to do it. Because of attorney-client confidentiality, Ingham will not go into depth in his filing.
Ingham will follow Larry Rudolph, Britney's longtime manager, who resigned on Monday after learning that Britney was retiring from performing and that there was no need for him to stay on as her manager. The "Toxic" singer claimed Rudolph forced her to perform during the 2018 European tour; however, TMZ previously revealed, Britney "begged" to go on the tour in several calls, including text messages at the time.
More resignations are expected this week, according to sources. Members of Spears' conservatorship team will also submit evidence to the judge at the next court hearing later this month, contradicting many of the things she claimed in court.
Bessemer Trust, the estate-management firm that Britney Spears had required to take over as conservator of her funds in replacement of her father, submitted its petitions withdrawing from the case last week. After Spears' statements in court on June 23, the petition stated that circumstances had changed.