Britney Spears filed for divorce from Kevin Federline on Tuesday (November 7) in Los Angeles. The singer cited irreconcilable differences as the reason for the split.
In documents filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, Spears checked a box that asks the court to grant her both legal and physical custody of the couple's two children, 1-year-old Sean Preston and 2-month-old Jayden James (see "Britney Spears Gives Birth To A Baby Boy" and "K-Fed Explains Why He And Britney Kept Second Baby's Name Under Wraps"). She also asks that Federline get visitation rights.
The couple, who married in September 2004, have battled public disapproval over the union since they first began dating in April of that year (see "Britney Spears Marries Kevin Federline"). At the time, Federline's ex-girlfriend Shar Jackson was pregnant with their second child, Kaleb. Even though Federline insisted that relationship was over by the time he and Spears began dating, Jackson said he cheated on her. "He cheated, he lied, he left," Jackson told MTV News (see "Shar Jackson Congratulates Britney And Kevin, Says 'I'm Not Bitter' ").
Spears responded to the criticism over her choice of a mate by covering Bobby Brown's "My Prerogative" and including a cameo from Federline as her groom in the clip, as well as shooting a reality show with her beau called "Chaotic."
Federline complained to MTV News just last week that the media often portrays him as a bad husband and father. "They come out and make these statements about who I am and what I am, but not once has anybody come to me to find out," he said. "It's a fine line of the bad boy they perceive me to be. I'm a nice person, I'm respectful of others. I have had my times, my ups and downs. You do things here and there, but the whole time they're talking about the partying is so much overrated, completely. I do like to go out and hang out with my friends, but as far as the cheating, and the bad father? Be honest."
Spears made a surprise appearance on "The Late Show With David Letterman" Monday night but gave no indication that the split was imminent, even though she cites November 6 as the day the couple separated, according to the documents. Federline was in Toronto for a MuchMusic television appearance to promote his just-released album, Playing With Fire, while Spears was in New York.
According to the court papers, Spears asks for her property — including jewelry and earnings from and after the date of separation — to be considered separate from Federline's. She also asks that each party pay their own attorney's fees.
Federline is Spears' second husband. Her first marriage — in a quick Las Vegas ceremony in January 2004 to childhood friend Jason Alexander — lasted 55 hours before being annulled (see "Britney On Her Marriage: Vegas Made Me Do It").
[This story was originally published at 4:33 p.m. ET on 11.07.2006]