“I’m not mad – I can move forward with her or without her,” he said outside the Wilshire restaurant in Santa Monica late Wednesday night. “But there will be a request to the court to address some kind of remedy to what I see as a willful non-appearance.”
Kaplan said he found out early Wednesday morning, moments after the pop star was due to arrive at his office for the custody-case deposition, that she would not attend due to a “medical condition.” The call came from Spears’ attorney.
“But she was in fact out later that day and night,” he noted. “It’s not fourth grade where you get a doctor’s note and it’s all OK. She was ordered to attend. And if there’s a legitimate reason for her not to attend she would have to establish that.”
Spears, 26, is battling ex-husband Federline, 29, over custody of sons Preston, 2 and Jayden, 1. Federline currently has primary physical custody, with supervised visitation for Spears.
At the deposition, she must answer questions under oath from Federline’s legal team. The topics likely would include her fitness as a parent and past drug and alcohol abuse.
As for the idea that photographers were harassing Spears keeping her from attending, Kaplan said: “All I know is that in my office there were no paparazzi.”
Kaplan pointed out that this was the fourth deposition appointment Spears has missed. “This deposition was a court ordered proceeding. So it’s a serious thing.”
As far as remedies, Kaplan ruled out seeking a contempt of court.
“We’re not interest in punishing her. We’re interested in getting facts.” He said he would also ask the court to have Spears shoulder the cost for the missed deposition but would not specifically cite other options under consideration.