Background

In the Feb. 2, 2022, Customs Bulletin and Decisions, U.S. Customs and Border Protection is reclassifying hydraulic dock levelers used to assist in the loading and unloading of truck cargo as other machines and mechanical appliances under HTSUS 8479.89.94 (2.5 percent duty) rather than as other loading or unloading machinery under HTSUS 8428.90.00 (duty-free). Ruling HQ H321511 will revoke ruling NY I81157 to reflect this change, effective with respect to goods entered or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption on or after April 3.

The product at issue is a tilting platform affixed to a pit in a truck dock. Dual hydraulic cylinders incorporated in the unit allow the platform to be tilted and a steel tip to be lifted and swung out to accommodate variations in truck trailer height. The leveler also features velocity fuses to prevent the dock from moving in the event of leaking or loosened hydraulic hose lines.

CBP explains that this item neither handles objects via mechanical means nor operates by mechanical means to raise or lower objects; instead, it merely acts to create a level bridge between the loading dock and truck trailers, which in turn enables the loading and unloading of vehicles.

For more information on how to seek or utilize classification and other rulings, please contact attorney Deb Stern at (305) 894-1007 or via email

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