bar exams

SC: 2023 Bar will be held in September, with only 3 exam dates

Jairo Bolledo
SC: 2023 Bar will be held in September, with only 3 exam dates

2022 BAR EXAMS. Bar examinees arrive at the De La Salle University in Taft Avenue in Manila for the first day of their exams on November 9, 2022.


The 2023 Bar exams will be held on September 17, 20, and 24 next year

MANILA, Philippines – Unlike previous years, the 2023 Bar examinations will be held in September, the Supreme Court (SC) announced on Thursday, December 8. 

“Operating under the aim of expediting the admission of successful examinees to the legal profession, the 2023 Bar Examinations shall be held in the month of September,” 2023 Bar examinations chairperson Associate Justice Ramon Paul Hernando announced in Bar bulletin no. 1. 

Hernando said next year’s examinations will be held in “three non-consecutive days, in a span of eight days.” Here’s the schedule: 

  • September 17 (Sunday)
  • September 20 (Wednesday)
  • September 24 (Sunday)

In the previous years, Bar exams were usually held every November. The latest exams, the 2022 Bar, were held on November 9, 13, 16, and 20. 

The 2023 Bar chair gave at least three reasons why they made changes in the Bar schedule. Among them is the early release of results.

“The rationale is both practical and societal: an earlier conduct of examinations means an earlier release of examination results; successful Bar examinees can commence their practice of law as early as December 2023; and new lawyers may begin contributing to their families and to the society as members of the Bar in the same year they graduated from law school,” Hernando explained. 

As to coverage, the Bar chair said the exams will be divided into six core subjects, distributed into three days. Two subjects will be taken up per day – one in the morning, and another in the afternoon. 

The morning sessions will be held from 8 am to 12:00 noon, while the afternoon periods will be from 2 pm to 6 pm. 

The core subjects are as follows, as provided by the SC, through the office of the Bar chair:

Screenshot from the SC’s advisory.

Hernando said the subjects were determined, while some were “conjoined” upon their review of previous syllabi and “due consideration of the latest developments in legal practice.” Taxation law will be coupled with commercial law, while remedial law will be jointly administered with legal and judicial ethics with practical exercises, the Bar chair added.

The full 2023 Bar syllabi may be accessed in this link.

The 2023 Bar chair also penned a personal note for the aspiring lawyers:

“The 2023 Bar Examinations shall test not only your knowledge, but also your resolve. Exploit your last semester in law school to the fullest and your law review courses to the last minute as opportunities for mastery. Do a careful reading of all official 2023 Bar Bulletins and issuances. Be vigilant against misinformation and disinformation, and be adaptable in overcoming post-pandemic challenges. Never
waver. May your body be strong and your mind fortified as you step onto the final stretch of this journey. Do not leave your fate to Fortuna, the goddess of chance. But should you do, always remember that chance favors the prepared one. The goal is in sight. I hope to see each one of you at the finish line.”

This year’s Bar exams had a total of 10,075 expected takers, but only 9,183 or 91.77% finished the last day of the test. SC Associate Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa also sat as the Bar chair. –

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Jairo Bolledo

Jairo Bolledo is a multimedia reporter at Rappler covering the police, crime, military, and security.