Amanda Bynes files to terminate conservatorship after nearly 9 years

·Editor, Yahoo Entertainment
·4 min read

Amanda Bynes has filed to end her conservatorship after nearly nine years.

Her attorney David A. Esquibias confirmed the news to Yahoo Entertainment on Friday.

Page Six was first to report that the retired actress, best known for roles in Hairspray and All That star, filed to terminate the conservatorship of her person and her estate in a petition submitted at the Ventura County Superior Court on Wednesday.

(Screenshot: Amanda Bynes via Instagram)
Amanda Bynes, former Nickelodeon star, has filed to terminate the conservatorship she's been under since 2014. (Screenshot: Amanda Bynes via Instagram)

The 35-year-old, who left Hollywood and is working on a degree at California's Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, also filed a capacity declaration Tuesday. The legal forms are completed by a medical professional who has experience and current knowledge of the conservatee's mental state to help the court determine if a conservatorship is necessary.

A hearing is set for March 22.

Esquibias told People magazine in a statement, "Amanda wishes to terminate her conservatorship. She believes her condition is improved and protection of the court is no longer necessary."

Bynes's mother, Lynn, has been overseeing the conservatorship since 2013. Leading up to it, the former Nickelodeon star had a series of troubles that were very public, including multiple DUI arrests, a drug-related arrest, shoplifting allegations and being evicted from her apartment.

NEW YORK, NY - JULY 09:  Amanda Bynes arrives for  an appearance at Manhattan Criminal Court on July 9, 2013 in New York City. Bynes is facing charges of reckless endangerment, tampering with evidence and criminal possession of marijuana in relation to her arrest on May 23, 2013.  (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
Amanda Bynes — arriving to court in NYC in July 2013 — had a series of troubles, which reached a boiling point in the summer of 2013. She later shared that she has bipolar disorder. (Photo: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)

In the summer of 2013, Bynes set a fire in a stranger's driveway, which reportedly injured her dog, and was hospitalized on an involuntary psychiatric hold. That is when a temporary conservatorship was put in place. The next year, she was involuntarily hospitalized again — and the conservatorship was made permanent. That year, Bynes accused her father of sexual and emotional abuse in a series of tweets, then recanted her accusations.

Soon after, the former child star later revealed that she has bipolar disorder.

While under the conservatorship, Bynes — whose estate was initially estimated to be $3 million — was in treatment for mental health and substance abuse. That has included transitional living and undergoing therapy. She's also lived in sober homes.

Bynes has also pursued her education in design. In 2019, she received her associate's degree from California’s Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. At one point, she shared on social media that social anxiety caused her to drop out of school months ago, but she later re-enrolled.

In 2020, Bynes celebrated 18 months of sobriety. She told Paper magazine in 2018 that substance abuse was at the core of her problems: "It definitely isn't fun when people diagnose you with what they think you are. That was always really bothersome to me. If you deny anything and tell them what it actually is, they don't believe you. Truly, for me, [my behavior] was drug-induced, and whenever I got off of [drugs], I was always back to normal."

Bynes's conservatorship attorney Esquibias told Yahoo last year that while the conservatorship was extended to 2023, the legal arrangement — which Britney Spears recently freed herself from — could "be terminated at any time for good cause."

HOLLYWOOD - MARCH 27:  Actress Amanda Bynes attends the premiere of
Amanda Bynes at the 2003 premiere of What a Girl Wants got her start as a child star on Nickelodeon's All That. (Photo: Robert Mora/Getty Images)

At the same time, Esquibias shared that Bynes was "doing great" as she turned 35. "She lives by the beach, attends school and is enjoying meditation and SoulCycle classes." He said she was thinking about starting a clothing line or a perfume, but she was focused on her education.

Bynes is engaged to Paul Michael, whom she met at a sober living home in late 2019. At one point, she made a pregnancy announcement, but a few months later, Esquibias clarified that Bynes was not pregnant.

Conservatorships have been in the news amid the #FreeBritney movement, which saw pop star Spears finally end hers after 13 years claiming conservatorship abuse. Spears's ended in November, but her attorney is continuing to probe the abuse allegations of the arrangement, which was helmed by her father, Jamie Spears.

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