Amanda Bynes' Return to Court: Will She Win Her Freedom?

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Amanda Bynes will be in court Friday, where she is expected to attempt to win her freedom from a California psychiatric hospital. Will she be successful?

The actress, held against her will for the last two weeks since setting a driveway on fire in Thousand Oaks, will be bussed to a local courthouse.

There, her parents will ask a judge for a temporary conservatorship, granting them control over her personal, legal, medical and financial affairs.

If the parents get their way, Amanda will go back to the psychiatric ward for further treatment; Bynes, 27, could walk away a free woman if a judge allows it.

Amanda Bynes will be accompanied by her lawyer. She'll speak to the judge personally, likely in chambers, so he try to gauge her mental competency.

If the parents prevail, the temporary conservatorship will last until September 30, when a hearing will take place to make the arrangement indefinite (or not).

So how is this expected to play out, at least as far as this afternoon goes?

It's possible that if Amanda Bynes' condition - reportedly a mental illness with schizophrenic tendencies - has greatly improved, she could be set free.

That scenario seems unlikely, however, even if her medication is working, since just a week ago, her doctors successfully defended her 14-day hold.

"What happens to Amanda next largely depends on what her doctor recommends," says Jeffrey S. Cohen, an L.A. attorney not involved with the case.

"If Amanda has improved, is cooperative and recognizes she needs treatment, it's possible she could be released to the care of her parents for outpatient treatment."

That still would mean "her mother in legal control of her basic needs and finances," which Amanda has reportedly been steadfastly opposed to.

However, if Ventura Superior Court Judge Glen M. Reiser rules that her mother's legal control is unnecessary, he could defer to the doctors treating her.

They in turn could keep Bynes hospitalized for several more weeks, experts believe.

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