All courts nationwide, from the Supreme Court down to the first level courts, will be “physically closed” to all court users starting March 23 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Courts “may be reached only through their respective hotlines, and e-mail addresses and Facebook accounts, if available.” The Supreme Court noted that all calls and messages directed to courts will be entertained from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday to Friday.
In the case of urgent matters, only then will the justice or judge on-duty, together with a skeleton staff, go to court to receive and act on the said urgent matter, the High Court said.
All justices and judges on-duty, together with their skeleton staff, are directed by the Supreme Court to stay at their respective residences, and will only go to their courts “once it has been determined that an urgent matter has to be acted upon.”
Court personnel will continue to report to their respective courts “as the need arises.”