LOS ANGELES — There were no more of the heated arguments or dueling court filings of the past few months, no more tearful testimony or angry accusations.
For one day at least, everyone surrounding Britney Spears agreed. She needed to be freed.
Most important among them was Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny, who at a hearing Friday terminated the conservatorship that controlled the pop singer’s life and money for nearly 14 years.
Spears did not attend the 30-minute hearing that was almost anti-climactic after the courtroom drama of recent proceedings, in which Spears demanded first the ouster of her father from power over her, then the removal of the legal shackles on her life.
It felt almost like a formality. The celebration that followed was plenty dramatic, though.
“Best day ever … praise the Lord … can I get an Amen???” Spears said on Twitter and Instagram minutes after the ruling.
Jubilation erupted outside the courthouse, with fans cheering and shouting after the decision was announced. The crowd chanted “Britney! Britney! Britney!” and fans sang and danced to Spears’ song “Stronger.”
“Good God I love my fans so much it’s crazy!!!” Spears said in her posts. “I think I’m gonna cry the rest of the day!!!!”
The decision capped a stunning odyssey that saw Spears publicly demand the end of the conservatorship, hire her own attorney, have her father removed from power and finally win the freedom to make her own medical, financial and personal decisions for the first time since 2008.
Those surrounding Spears said she is equipped to make those decisions.
Jodi Montgomery, the court-appointed conservator who oversaw the singer’s life and medical decisions starting in 2019, developed a care plan with her therapists and doctors to guide Spears into the aftermath.
“There is no reason Ms. Spears can’t lead a safe, happy, fulfilling life after this conservatorship,” Montgomery’s attorney, Lauriann Wright, said at the hearing.
As recently as last spring, it appeared that Spears’ conservatorship could continue for years. Then it unraveled with surprising speed.
Key to the unraveling was a speech Spears made at a hearing in June when she passionately described the restrictions and scrutiny as “abusive” and said “I just want my life back,” a line her lawyer repeated in court Friday.
In court filings last week, Britney Spears’ former business managers, Tri Star Sports and Entertainment Group, pushed back against Rosengart’s demands for documents about the firm’s involvement in the conservatorship from 2008 to 2018. The group also denied any role in or knowledge of any surveillance of the superstar.
Britney Spears was a 26-year-old new mother at the height of her career when her father established the conservatorship, at first on a temporary basis, in February 2008 after a series of public mental health struggles.
It ends a few weeks before her 40th birthday, with her sons in their mid-teens and her career on indefinite hold, as she is engaged to be married a second time.
Britney Spears has indicated that she’ll focus on family and her newfound freedom for now. She may or may not resume making music.
“Whether Britney performs again will be up to Britney, at the right time,” Rosengart said.