Second motion for reconsideration; exceptions

As a general rule, a second motion for reconsideration cannot be entertained. Section 2 of Rule 52 of the Rules of Court is unequivocal.[1] The Court resolutely holds that a second motion for reconsideration is a prohibited pleading, and only for extraordinarily persuasive reasons and after an express leave has been first obtained may such motion be entertained (League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP), et al. v. COMELEC, et al., 668 Phil. 120, 139 (2011), citing Securities and Exchange Commission v. PICOP Resources, Inc., 588 Phil. 136 (2008); Apo Fruits Corp., et al. v. Land Bank of the Phils., 662 Phil. 572 (2011); and Ortigas and Company Limited Partnership v. Velasco, 324 Phil. 483 [1996]).  The restrictive policy against a second motion for reconsideration is emphasized in A.M. No. 10-4-20-SC, as amended (Internal Rules of the Supreme Court). Section 3, Rule 15 of which states:

SEC. 3. Second motion for reconsideration. - The Court shall not entertain a second motion for reconsideration, and any exception to this rule can only be granted in the higher interest of justice by the Court en banc upon a vote of at least two-thirds of its actual membership. There is reconsideration "in the higher interest of justice" when the assailed decision is not only legally erroneous, but is likewise patently unjust and potentially capable of causing unwarranted and irremediable injury or damage to the parties. A second motion for reconsideration can only be entertained before the ruling sought to be reconsidered becomes final by operation of law or by the Court's declaration.

In the Division, a vote of three Members shall be required to elevate a second motion for reconsideration to the Court En Banc.

The Court has the power and prerogative to suspend its own rules and to exempt a case from their operation if and when justice requires it. In the exercise of sound discretion, the Supreme Court may determine issues which are of transcendental importance. 

[1] Section 2. Second motion for reconsideration. - No second motion for reconsideration of a judgment or final resolution by the same party shall be entertained.