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Classification Rulings: Headsets, Blind Rivet Nuts, Decorative Tape, Drugs

Monday, June 01, 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 May 27, 2015, Customs Bulletin and Decisions.

An on-demand webinar from Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg covering the basics of tariff classification is available here.

Computer Headsets. CBP is reclassifying a stereo digital headset with an adjustable headband and a boom mounted directional electret condenser microphone as other sets consisting of a microphone and one or more speakers under HTSUS 8518.30.20 (4.9 percent duty) rather than as other computer parts under HTSUS 8473.30.5000 (duty-free). CBP explains that heading 8518 specifically covers headphones and earphones for use with computers, including those that function by way of converting electrical signals into acoustic signals.

Ruling HQ H035752 will modify ruling NY G82341 to reflect this change, effective with respect to goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or after July 27.

Blind Rivet Nuts. CBP is proposing to reclassify steel blind rivet nuts as nuts of iron or steel under HTSUS 7318.16.00 (duty-free) rather than as other threaded articles of iron or steel under HTSUS 7318.19.00 (5.7 percent duty). The rivet nuts are threaded and intended for fastening and securing sheet metal and plastic materials. CBP states that these items meet the common definition of a nut (i.e., a type of fastener that is internally threaded and often but not always used opposite a mating bolt that fastens the materials together) despite having some characteristics uncommon to nuts.

Rulings NY H88897 and NY M82161 would be modified to reflect this change. Comments are due by June 26.

Cyclosporine. CBP is proposing to reclassify cyclosporine as other lactams under HTSUS 2933.79.85 (duty-free) rather than as natural antibiotics under HTSUS 2941.90.10 (duty-free) or drugs under HTSUS 2933.99.90 (duty-free). This product is a drug used to prevent organ rejection in kidney, liver and heart transplants. CBP explains that cyclosporine does not exhibit antibiotic activity and is not used as such; instead, it meets the description of a heterocyclic compound and is a lactam because its molecules contain one or more amide functions in a ring.

Ruling NY G81655 would be revoked, and rulings NY 801521 and NY 801775 would be modified, to reflect this change. Comments are due by June 26.

Decorative Tape. CBP is reclassifying decorative tape designed for children to decorate notebooks, tote bags, etc., as other self-adhesive plastic tape under HTSUS 3919.10.20 (5.8 percent duty) rather than as vitrifiable transfers under HTSUS 4098.10.00 (duty-free). CBP explains that this tape does not allow for any transfer of its images, does not use water or heat for its application and does not have a temporary backing material, and instead is simply a plastic tape containing repetitive designs.

Ruling HQ H250628 will revoke rulings NY N239592 and N246346 to reflect this change, effective with respect to goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or after July 27. (CBP notes that although ruling N246346 included the correct classification, it was issued after ruling N239592 but not pursuant to the regulations regarding modification or revocation of interpretive rulings.)

Origin of Wristwatches. CBP is proposing to revoke ruling HQ 562543 concerning the country of origin of two styles of dual function analog and digital wristwatches. The quartz analog movements of the watches, which determine the hours and minutes, are made in Japan; the digital movements, which determine the seconds, are made in China; and the component parts are assembled into a watch in China.

CBP originally held that the country of origin of the watches is Japan because showing the hours and minutes is the essential function of the watches. CBP now believes that the countries of origin are both Japan and China because the country of origin for watches is the country of manufacture of the watch movement(s).

Comments on this proposal are due no later than June 26.

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