MANILA – The Supreme Court (SC) has given the green light for face-to-face proceedings to resume in the Sandiganbayan, Court of Appeals, and the Court of Tax Appeals starting Wednesday, following the easing of movement restrictions in the National Capital Region (NCR).
“All appellate collegiate courts within the NCR beginning October 20,2021 until October 29,2021, may conduct in-court proceedings on urgent matters and on matters as may be determined by the presiding justice or the chairpersons of the different divisions,” the SC, through acting Chief Justice Estela Perlas-Bernabe, said.
Under Administrative Circular No. 83-2021, dated October 18, “in-court attendance shall be limited to lawyers, parties and witnesses required to participate in-court”.
“All others who are not required to be in-court but wish to observe the proceedings may do so through videoconferencing, subject to existing guidelines,” the AO read.
Courts and other offices should also maintain a skeleton workforce of 30 percent.
The SC is also lifting the suspension of the time for filing and service of pleadings and motions, saying the period for filing and service would resume seven calendar days from October 20. Electronic submissions may also be done.
The NCR has been placed under Alert Level 3 starting October 16 due to the decreasing number of coronavirus cases. (PNA)