Today is Monday, May 21, 2018

The Raffle Committee Staff

by: Marie Iris Magdalene Minerva

The Office of the Raffle Committee Staff, as it is aptly called, is neither a division nor a “regular” department of the Court of Appeals. However, with the nature of the functions that is impressed upon said office, it is equally important as the other divisions of this Court.

Under the 2002 Internal Rules of the Court of Appeals, the Raffle Committee Staff is under the direct control and supervision of the Presiding Justice.

It assists the Raffle Committee, composed of all the Justices of the Division chosen for that day, in the conduct of the daily raffle of cases. These cases include: (1) appealed civil cases; (2) appealed criminal cases; (3) appealed criminal cases involving detention prisoners; (4) appealed special civil actions; (5) appealed special proceedings; (6) habeas corpus; (7) annulment of judgments; (8) petitions for review of the decisions of quasi-judicial agencies; (9) petitions for certiorari, prohibition, mandamus; (10) cases involving substitution of a ponente or designation of Justices to fill vacancies in a Division or to create a Special Division of Five; (11) administrative cases referred by the SC to the Court; (12) cases involving violations of the Anti-Money Laundering Act (AMLA); and, (13) cases involving violations of the Human Security Act of 2007.

The Raffle Committee Staff, prepares the list of the cases to be raffled for the day except those for completion and initial caseload of new justices which is prepared by the Judicial Records Division (JRD). It also prepares the rollos, documents and list of cases with requests for re-raffle. For purposes of exemption from the raffle of cases, the Staff is charged with the task of taking note of the leave of absence and date of retirement of the Justices.

Assignment of cases, whether for completion or for study and report, is done strictly by raffle with the use of a dome-like plastic mechanical contrivance very much like the lotto machine. The procedure closely resembles that of a PCSO lottery game where a plastic ball with the number corresponding to a particular justice is released by hot air from the machine as each title of a case is read aloud by the staff. This process is repeated until all cases to be raffled for the day are assigned to the respective Justices.

The raffling of cases is done on a rotation basis to assure that each Justice will get an equal number of the same kind of action or proceeding. To further ensure equalization, the Raffle Committee Staff prepares separate lists of cases and records the case assignments of the different justices in a control book in accordance with the different case categories.

The Internal Rules of the Court of Appeals mandates the Raffle Committee Staff to furnish the office of all the Justices, Information and Statistical Data Division (ISD) and the different sections of the JRD with the result of the raffle not later than the following working day.

The Raffle of Cases is done in chronological order every working day at 10:30 am. Under the 1994 Revised Internal Rules and the 2002 Internal Rules of the Court of Appeals, only the raffle of cases for completion of records is open to the public. However, in the recently amended Internal Rules of this Court, no such distinction was made. Thus, the raffle of all cases is now publicly done in order to enable litigants and other interested parties to witness how the assignment of cases is made.

Special Raffle, on the other hand, is allowed only in cases of urgent necessity to be determined and authorized in writing by the Presiding Justice or the Executive Justice, or in his absence or unavailability, the most senior Justice present. It is conducted during office hours by the Committee for the day or any of its members. In their absence, the Presiding Justice or the Executive Justice may personally conduct the raffle or assign another Justice to do so.

The Office of the Raffle Committee Staff, situated at the mezzanine floor of the Office of the Clerk of Court at the CA main building, is presently manned by the eight (8) equally able and proficient employees of this Court, namely: Rosalina Gatmaitan, Marie Iris Magdalene Minerva, Amelita Albano, Rose Marie Macapagal, Ma. Concepcion de Guzman, Glenn Roxas, Leonidro Viola and Leandro Mercado.

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