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Britney Spears -- The Road to Freedom

12/7/2009 10:14 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Britney SpearsBritney Spears' team has taken the first step toward ending the conservatorship, TMZ has learned ... but it's by no means a done deal.

Sources tell us lawyers and others connected with the case have been meeting ... evaluating Britney's progress with the goal of ending the conservatorship. As we first reported, Britney's dad, Jamie Spears, wanted to wait until her tour ended before making the big move, but it's something he wants for his daughter only when the time is right.

We know there have been several lengthy meetings recently between the lawyers and the court commissioner in the commissioner's chambers.

Jamie and the lawyers will not make the decision to end the conservatorship. They will weigh in, but the person with all the influence is the "capacity expert" -- a psychiatrist who was appointed by the court. The capacity expert will do a thorough evaluation and submit it to the commissioner.

We're told one of the fears Jamie has ... Sam Lutfi, a guy Jamie thinks is still a threat to Britney if she allows him back in her life. He's got that right.

There are actually two conservatorships -- one over Britney, the person, and the other over Britney's business affairs. We're told the business conservatorship will likely continue. The issue on the table is whether to end the conservatorship over Britney, the person. Again, no decisions have been made, but it's all moving in that direction.

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