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Classification Rulings on DVDs, Wound Packs, Foods, Shoes, Battery Packs, Cat Toys, Etc.

Monday, April 27, 2015
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The following proposed and final revocations and modifications of classification rulings by U.S. Customs and Border Protection are included in the April 22, 2015, Customs Bulletin and Decisions.

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Yard Stakes. CBP is proposing to reclassify iron yard stakes with iron-backed glass articles at one end as other metal ornaments under HTSUS 8306.29.00 (duty-free) rather than as other glassware of a kind used for indoor decoration under HTSUS 7013.99.5000 (30 percent duty). CBP explains that the metal content of the stake provides the essential character of the article because it reflects the article’s function and use, imparts the greatest material content and material value of the article, and provides a significant part of the visual impact of the article.

Ruling NY N248093 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

DVDs and Blu-ray Discs. CBP is reclassifying certain DVDs and Blu-ray discs pre-recorded with movies in digital form as proprietary format recorded discs under HTSUS 8523.49.40 (duty-free) instead of other types of optical media under HTSUS 8523.40.50 (2.7 percent duty). CBP explains that the discs contain data that is encrypted in such a manner that they can only be played by a machine specifically encoded so as to be able to read the data properly.

Ruling HQ H236026 revoking NY N058455 and modifying HQ H083275 to reflect this change will be effective as of June 22.

Cat Toys. CBP is proposing to reclassify certain cat toys as machines having individual functions under HTSUS 8479.89.98 rather than as electrical machines under HTSUS 8543.70.9650, 8543.89.9695 or 8543.89.9795.

Rulings NY N056253 and NY D83727 would be revoked, and ruling NY M87177 would be modified, to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Multi-channel Measurement Device. CBP is proposing to reclassify a compact mobile multi-channel measurement system device used for a wide range of vibration, acoustical and other analyses as other measuring or checking instruments under HTSUS 9031.80.80 (1.7 percent duty) rather than as parts and accessories for instruments of chapter 90 under HTSUS 9033.00.00 (4.4 percent duty). CBP notes that it has consistently held that equipment that is principally used in the process of measuring or checking is classifiable under heading 9031 even if it does not actually perform the measuring or checking operation itself.

Ruling NY N184613 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Data Recorders and Components. CBP is proposing to reclassify digital strip data recorders as other measuring or checking instruments under HTSUS 9031.80.80 (1.7 percent duty) rather than as parts of instruments of chapter 90 under HTSUS 9033.00.00 (4.4 percent duty). These devices are microprocessor-driven thermal print units with motor-driven paper transport that are primarily used in medical, scientific and industrial applications. CBP notes that while they are imported as components of larger machines, they are themselves machines that carry out steps in a process for inspecting and are therefore specifically described in heading 9031.

Ruling NY 861163 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

CBP is also proposing to reclassify two types of drive assemblies for use in data recording instruments as other parts of measuring or checking instruments under HTSUS 9031.90.90 (1.7 percent duty) rather than as parts of instruments of chapter 90 under HTSUS 9033.00.00 (4.4 percent duty). CBP explains that these assemblies are solely used with data recorders and must therefore be classified together with those recorders under heading 9031.

Rulings HQ 952499, NY 881722 and NY H80308 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Ice Hockey Memorabilia. CBP is proposing to reclassify two original (non-replica) wool sweaters from Canadian ice hockey teams as collectors’ pieces of historical interest under HTSUS 9705.00.00 (duty-free) rather than as knitted or crocheted sweaters under HTSUS 6110.11.0070 (16 percent duty). CBP explains that the sweaters are considered collectors’ pieces because one was owned by a famous hockey player and the other is a rare artifact associated with a particular historical time.

Ruling NY N198401 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Chocolate with Hazelnuts. CBP is proposing to reclassify milk chocolate with hazelnuts intended to be used on ice cream or in the molding of cakes, pastries and confectionery under HTSUS 1806.20.99 (8.5 percent duty) rather than under HTSUS 1806.20.81 (10 percent duty).

Ruling NY N007869 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Plush Animals with Gel Packs. CBP is reclassifying plush animals with gel packs that are used to treat minor children’s injuries as other made up articles under HTSUS 6307.90.98 (7 percent duty) rather than as toys under HTSUS 9503.00.00 (duty-free). CBP states that these items cannot be classified as toys because they have a utilitarian purpose and that their physical characteristics clearly indicate that they are intended to be used for healing minor wounds and not as stuffed animals. CBP also notes that these items are distinguishable from ice packs and heating packs that CBP has classified under HTSUS heading 3824 according to the chemical makeup of the gel inside the packs, which are put directly on bruises and cuts and are not first inserted into fabric components.

Ruling HQ H253885 revoking rulings NY L83691 and NY L82259 and modifying rulings NY F85438 and NY G80850 to reflect this change will be effective as of June 22.

Sliced and Diced Potatoes. CBP is proposing to reclassify sliced and diced potatoes treated with sodium bisulfite to preserve their color as dried potatoes, whether or not cut or sliced but not further prepared, under HTSUS 0712.90.30 rather than as potatoes prepared or preserved otherwise than by vinegar or acetic acid under HTSUS 2005.20.00. CBP explains that potatoes treated with sodium bisulfite can be put to all the same uses as fresh potatoes and thus do not meet the definition of “prepared” or “preserved.”

Rulings HQ 966202, NY 189048 and HQ 954208 would be modified to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Cycling Shoes. CBP is proposing to reclassify a unisex cycling shoe with a rubber/plastic outer sole designed to incorporate cleats as other footwear having uppers with more than 90 percent of the external surface area being rubber or plastics under HTSUS 6402.19.15 (5.1 percent duty) rather than as sports footwear with outer soles and uppers of rubber or plastics under HTSUS 6402.19.90 (9 percent duty). CBP rejected an effort to similarly reclassify two other styles of cycling shoes based on an outside lab report that differed from the CBP lab report, noting that in such cases the CBP lab report takes precedence and that the independent lab reports submitted here do not conclusively show that CBP’s lab reports are erroneous.

Ruling NY N170022 would be modified to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Passenger Boarding Bridges. CBP is proposing to reclassify bridges designed to be used as an embarking and disembarking passageway between a terminal and an aircraft as passenger boarding bridges of a kind used in airports under HTSUS 8479.71.00 rather than as lifting and handling machines under HTSUS 8428.90.0090. CBP explains that these items do not actively engage in lifting, moving or handling objects.

Rulings NY D85781, NY B88222 and NY D88830 would be revoked to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

Battery Packs. CBP is proposing to reclassify rechargeable battery packs, some used for iPhones and other electronic devices and some used to provide battery power to a motor vehicle, as lithium-ion batteries under HTSUS 8507.60.00 (3.4 percent duty) rather than as static converters for telecommunications apparatus under HTSUS 8504.40.8500 (duty-free) or power supplies under HTSUS 8504.40.9530 (1.5 percent duty). Among other things, CBP notes that these items do not charge other goods by connecting them directly to an electrical outlet as items classified in heading 8504 do.

Rulings NY N233902, NY N231545, NY N004618 and NY N232914 would be revoked, and ruling NY N233370 would be modified, to reflect this change. Comments are due by May 22.

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