Conservatorship Over Britney Extended

Britney Spears gets into a waiting SUV as she is mobbed by paparazzi at a Studio City mall Jan. 14, 2008. The pop star had just finished eating lunch after arriving an aborted trip to a court hearing in Los Angeles related to her custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline that day.
A court commissioner on Monday extended the temporary conservatorship of Britney Spears to her father and an attorney until Feb. 14 and appointed a physician to evaluate her competence.

Superior Court Commissioner Reva Goetz extended the conservatorship by James Spears and attorney Andrew Wallet. She also ordered the singer to have no contact with her friend and sometime manager Sam Lutfi, specifying that she is not allowed to reach him by phone, text message or other means, Goetz said.

A request by lawyer Adam Streisand to enter the case as Spears' attorney was denied, and a restraining order against Lutfi was extended.

Spears remained hospitalized for psychiatric evaluation and did not attend the hearing that was closed to the press and public.

Meanwhile, lawyers for Spears, her ex-husband and her conservators met behind closed doors Monday for a custody hearing, but a court commissioner quickly rescheduled the proceedings.

"In the end, no change was made," court spokesman Allan Parachini said. Another hearing was set for Feb. 19.

"It's a very fluid landscape that's changing day by day," said lawyer Mark Vincent Kaplan, who represents Spears' ex-husband Kevin Federline.

Kaplan said he was not being given information on Spears' condition.

A temporary conservatorship was granted Friday by Court Commissioner Reva Goetz, who said it would remain in effect until another hearing was held.

Photos: Britney Spears
Meanwhile, Spears' current stay in a psychiatric ward was extended for two weeks under a section in state law that allows patients to be kept for medical treatment if they are found to be gravely disabled or a danger to themselves or others, a person close to the pop star told The Associated Press.

Spears was to be released Sunday from UCLA Medical Center's psychiatric ward after undergoing a 72-hour mental evaluation.

But doctors and a ward medical officer cited California law to keep her longer, said the person close to Spears, who requested anonymity.

On Friday, court Commissioner Goetz ruled that Spears needed someone else to take over her personal and financial affairs.

Spears' father, James, and her attorney, Andrew Wallet, were granted conservatorship.

Monday's custody hearing had been meant to deal with efforts by Spears' legal team to withdraw from the case, but the lawyers abandoned that effort last week and took it off the court calendar.

Superior Court Commissioner Scott Gordon barred Spears from contact with her two small children after she refused last month to relinquish the children to representatives of Federline after a court-sanctioned visit.

On that occasion, she was also taken to a hospital for psychiatric observation but quickly released.