Today I learned that it’s legal in Germany to attend court by video conferencing software since 2002, given that the judge invited the participants to do so. This is legitimised by the §128a “Zivilprozessordnung” (short ZPO, English: code of civil procedure) and allows lawyers as well as their principal to attend the trial by video conferencing software if there isn’t a strict requirement for them to be in court. This is especially useful for a lot of cases where it’s more important to find a way for both parties to get along with each other than finding “the bad person”. And provides the legal basis for the current usage in the corona pandemic.
I came across this while listing to a legal podcast called “Rechtsbelehrung” which had an episode on this due to the ongoing Corona crisis. It also talked about how underutilized this option is since it was created.