Earlier this month, Amanda Bynes filed documents petitioning to end the court-ordered conservatorship that placed her under the control of her mother and legal guardian, Lynn Bynes, for almost nine years. On Tuesday, a judge terminated the arrangement, stating that it was “no longer required.”
The 35-year-old actress had been under the conservatorship since August 2013, when she was hospitalized and put on a 5150 psychiatric hold after reportedly starting a fire in someone’s driveway in Thousand Oaks, California. At that point, a judge put her mother in charge of Bynes’s personal, medical, and financial affairs. While Bynes regained control of her financial assets in 2017, her mother has remained in charge of all personal decisions including her health care.
The termination follows Britney Spears’s highly publicized mission to end her own 13-year conservatorship, which was finally lifted in November. Their cases are strikingly similar: Both were young female stars under immense public scrutiny whose erratic behavior only fed the press frenzy surrounding their personal lives. Like Bynes, Spears had been put on a 5150 hold in 2008 before her conservatorship began. In the months leading up to her hospitalization, Bynes’s mental health was the subject of much speculation following a series of concerning tweets and a misdemeanor charge after she was accused of throwing a bong out her window. During her 30-day psychiatric hold after the driveway incident, a judge granted Bynes’s parents a temporary conservatorship, which has been extended multiple times over the past nine years.
While Bynes was reported to have opposed the conservatorship through a lawyer when it was first placed, it’s not clear whether she’s consistently wanted out of the arrangement since then. She made a few press appearances during that time including one in 2017 in which she reported she’d regained control of her finances thanks to her mother. In 2018, she told Paper magazine she had been sober for four years, but she reentered a treatment facility two months later after what “Page Six” called a “stress-related relapse.” Last year, it was reported that a judge extended the conservatorship until March 2023 based on a report from her mother.
While Bynes was reported to have opposed the conservatorship through a lawyer when it was first placed, it’s not clear whether she’s consistently wanted out of the arrangement since then. Ahead of the trial, her lawyer, David A. Esquibias, told Variety, “We’re all excited, and we’re all anxiously looking forward to Amanda living a life as a private and normal citizen.” The Cut reached out to Esquibias for comment and will update when we hear back.
This post has been updated.