The Supreme Court (SC), in an order dated Sept. 24 and signed by court administrator Jose Midas Marquez, has allowed first and second-level courts to conduct videoconferencing hearings for both criminal and civil cases. The videoconferencing hearings were previously limited on select courts as a way of coping with the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, Sen. Francis Tolentino is pushing for the conduct of the Bar Examination via online for the safety of the examinees. Tolentino made his proposal to SC chief justice Diosdado Peralta during the hearing on the judiciary’s 2021 budget.
The senator, who is also a lawyer, said online Bar examinations are being considered in various places in the United States, such as Michigan, District of Columbia, Louisiana and New York.
Peralta said the High Court is also looking into the possibility of implementing an online Bar examination for next scheduled test on November 2021, which will be held simultaneously in Manila and two other sites in Visayas and Mindanao.
“Next year probably, not this year, wala na this year,” Peralta told Tolentino.