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Classification Ruling Changes on Stretch Briefs, Knife Care Set, Soapstone Holder

Friday, August 17, 2018
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The following proposed and final revocations and modifications of U.S. Customs and Border Protection classification rulings are included in the Aug. 15, 2018, Customs Bulletin and Decisions. Comments on the proposal are due no later than Sept. 14 and the final actions will be effective with respect to goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or after Oct. 15.

Stretch Briefs. CBP is proposing to reverse its determination that stretch briefs constructed of a knitted mesh whose primary application is to hold disposable and reusable absorbent pads for use by those afflicted with permanent or chronic incontinence are eligible for duty-free treatment under HTSUS 9817.00.96. CBP explains that while it does consider this condition to be a handicap the briefs are not specially designed for those afflicted with it.

Ruling NY A89600 would be modified to reflect this change. The ruling’s classification of this item as knitted briefs under HTSUS 6108.22.9020 and 6108.22.9030 (16.5 percent duty) would remain unchanged.

Knife Care Set. CBP is reclassifying a knife care set (which includes cotton polishing cloths, a talc powder ball, a bottle of food grade oil, and polishing sticks) as articles of mineral substances under HTSUS 6815.99.20 (duty-free) rather than as articles of precious or semiprecious stones under HTSUS 7116.20.4000 (10.5 percent duty). CBP explains that the talc powder ball that imparts the essential character of the set contains talcum powder and is thus classified in heading 6815. Ruling HQ H293248 will revoke ruling NY N245711 to reflect this change.

Soapstone Holders. CBP is reclassifying hot max flat soapstone holders as other drawing or marking-out instruments under HTSUS 9017.20.8080 (4.6 percent duty) rather than as other articles of semiprecious stones under HTSUS 7116.20.4000 (10.5 percent duty). CBP explains that it previously examined only the soapstone chalk and did not account for the steel holder housing it. CBP now finds that the holder (with the enclosed soapstone) is used for technical or industrial purposes to mark metals, wood, or brick for measurements and to indicate where to cut, saw, paint, etc. for welding or other industrial purposes. It is therefore like the exemplars in the explanatory notes to heading 9017. Ruling HQ H293247 will revoke ruling NY N239783 to reflect this change.

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