Law dean still hopeful for Bar’s regionalization
Michael Vencynth H. Braga (The Freeman) - May 31, 2016 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Retired Court of Appeals Justice Portia Hormachuelos, dean of the Gullas Law School, has welcomed the decision of the Supreme Court to hold this year’s Bar examinations still in Manila.

She, however, remains optimistic that the high tribunal will grant next year the proposal to decentralize the annual licensure examination for lawyers with Cebu being the pilot area.

The 2016 Bar exams will be conducted at the University of Santo Tomas in November.

Hormachuelos, a staunch advocate of the Bar regionalization, admitted that Cebu failed to achieve the required 1,000 threshold of would-be takers in Cebu with only more than half signifying interest in a survey conducted.

The 2016 Bar Examination Committee had agreed to the proposal to conduct the Bar exams in Cebu City if at least 1,000 law graduates prefer to take the bar exams here.

Hormachuelos said she has been trying to convince the Bar Exam Committee to consider the number since it was already sufficient but to no avail.

She attributed the low turnout to time constraint since they were only given a month to complete the survey, and the distance of provinces which hampered the delivery of survey results.

She believed that the SC might not be ready to administer the Bar exams outside Manila due to time constraints.

“I will propose again to the Supreme Court for next year. Hopefully, next year naa na tay more time to prepare,” she said.

She added that she would bring up the proposal at the meeting of the Philippine Association of Law Schools on June 13, 14, and 16.

“I am hopeful that the SC will grant the proposal this time,” she said.

She has been pushing for the Bar regionalization, believing that it would spell a huge savings on the part of the Supreme Court and the examinees.

In a resolution dated May 3, 201, the Supreme Court en banc set this year's Bar exams on November 6, 13, 20 and 27.

The 2016 Bar Examination Committee is chaired by Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco Jr.

Law graduates from schools with original academic calendar from June to March may start filing their applications for the Bar Exams on June 1 until July 31 without extension while for graduates whose academic year ends in June 2016 have until August 15 without extension.

The SC has also given a go signal for the Bar Confidant to negotiate with the University of Santo Tomas for the use of its campus and facilities for the Bar exams.

The exams cover eight subjects, namely, Political Law, Labor Law, Civil Law, Taxation, Mercantile Law, Criminal Law, Remedial Law, and Legal and Judicial Ethics.   (FREEMAN)


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