Despite the physical closure of all courts in the National Capital Region (NCR) starting Monday, Aug. 2, until Aug. 20, the Supreme Court’s (SC) Office of the Bar Confidant (OBC) will continue accepting online applications for the 2020 and 2021 bar examinations which will be conducted, also online, this November.
In its announcement, the OBC said its helpdesk hotlines will be available only from Monday to Wednesday starting at 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. from Aug. 2 to 20.
But the OBC said that bar applicants can access the Bar Personal Login Unified System (BAR PLUS) for their queries and concerns or through its helpdesk email – [email protected].
Applications by law graduates will be accepted until Sept. 15.
The announcement was issued last July 31 by Bar Confidant Rosita M. Requillas Nacional, also a deputy clerk of court. The OBC supervises for the SC the country’s bar examinations.
Last July 15, the SC started accepting online applications for the 2020 and 2021 bar examinations which will be conducted in at least 16 testing centers nationwide.
Associate Justice Marvic M.V.F. Leonen, chairman of the bar examinations, said the SC has launched the online application system through BAR PLUS, “a homegrown online application system through which prospective applicants for the Nov. 2021 Bar Examinations will submit their verified petition, other required documents and information including proof of payment of the bar application fee.”
Leonen said: “BAR PLUS was created to facilitate a safe, equitable, and inclusive Bar Examinations. All potential examinees will submit their applications digitally and through mail. A potential examinee will be required to personally appear only when there are difficult issues in their applications which cannot be addressed in any other manner.”
“Before accessing the portal, bar applicants are required to read and strictly follow the instructions in the document referred to as Frequently Asked Questions located at https://sc.judiciary.gov.ph/20109/,” he also said in Bar Bulletin No. 21.
The 2020 bar examinations were cancelled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The SC decided to conduct simultaneously the 2020 and the 2021 bar examinations online in at least 16 testing centers throughout the county.
The testing centers are the St. Louis University in Baguio City, Ateneo de Manila University, Manila Adventist College, Saint Louis College – La Union, Saint Mary’s University, Cagayan State University, De La Salle Lipa in Lipa City, University of Nueva Caceres, University of St. La Salle – Bacolod, Central Philippine University, University of Cebu – Banilad, Mindanao State University – Iligan, Mindanao State University – General Santos City, Ateneo de Davao University Xavier University – Cagayan de Oro, and Ateneo de Zamboanga University.