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HQ 082339

August 5, 1988

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 082339 CMR


TARIFF NO.: 6205.20.2065

Ms. Eileen T. Romito
Sears, Roebuck and Co.
Department 733X
BSC 19-45
Sears Tower
Chicago, Illinois 60684

RE: Request to review New York Ruling Letter (NYRL) 828040 of February 3, 1988, pursuant to 19 CFR 177.2(b)(2)(ii)(C).

Dear Ms. Romito:

This is in response to your request of May 20, 1988, for review of NYRL 828040 which classified a man's quilted shirt, style 57823, in subheading 6205.20.2065, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


Style 57823, a man's quilted shirt from Korea, was submitted to our New York office for a binding ruling on its classification under the HTSUSA. New York issued NYRL 828040 in which the submitted sample was classified in 6205.20.2065, HTSUSA. In that ruling letter, the quilted shirt was described as having a woven outer shell manufactured from 80 percent cotton and 20 percent polyester with a quilted lining and padding of man-made fibers. The garment had a full-front, buttoned opening, a pointed collar, long sleeves with buttoned cuffs, and chest pockets.

You have requested that we review this ruling, and you have submitted a sample, style 57824. You state in your request that the only difference between this sample and style 57823 is the color and fiber content of the shell. Style 57824 has a 100 percent cotton shell. It also has side pockets at the waist which style 57823 apparently did not have. You specifically
requested an explanation as to why the poly fiber fill quilted to the lining is not considered in determining the chief weight of the shirt.


Was the classification of style 57823 in NYRL 828040 of February 3, 1988, correctly determined by basing the decision on the chief weight of the outer shell of the garment?


We agree with the classification of style 57823 as stated in NYRL 828040 of February 3, 1988. There is no disagreement that the sample submitted is a shirt. As such, it is classifiable under heading 6205 of the proposed Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the United States (HTSUS). The difficulty in classification arises at the subheading level at which it must be decided whether this garment will be classified as a shirt of cotton or of man-made fibers.

Classification of this shirt is directed by application of the Subheading Explanatory Note to Chapter 62. The note applies to the classification of articles, such as the submitted shirt, made from quilted textile products in the piece of heading 58.11. It states:

Articles made from the quilted textile products in the piece of heading 58.11 are to be classified within the subheadings of the Chapter under the provisions of Subheading Note 2 to Section XI. For the purposes of their classifi- cation, it is the textile material of the outer fabric which gives these articles their essential character. This means that where, for example, a man's quilted anorak has an outer fabric of 60% cotton and 40% polyester, the garment falls in subheading 6201.92. It should be noted that, even if this outer fabric by itself falls in heading 59.03, 59.06 or 59.07, the garment does not fall in heading 62.10.

Applying the Subheading Note, the shirt is classified by the materials of its outer shell.

Subheading Note 2(A) to Section XI provides:

Products of Chapters 56 to 63 containing two or more textile materials are to be regarded as consisting wholly of that textile material which would be selected under Note 2 to this Section for the classification of a product of Chapters 50 to 55 consisting of the same textile materials.

Note 2, referred to above, provides:

Goods classifiable in Chapters 50 to 55 or in heading No. 58.09 or 58.02 and of a mixture of two or more textile materials are to be classified as if consisting wholly of that one textile material which predominates by weight over any other single textile material.

Since the outer shell of style 57823 consisted of 80 percent cotton and 20 percent polyester, the garment is classifiable as a men's cotton shirt under 6205.20.2065, HTSUSA. Style 57824 is also classifiable under 6205.20.2065, HTSUSA, since its outer shell is 100 percent cotton.

As you can see from the progression of the analysis, we do not reach the issue of whether the lining is more than mere trimming, and thus to be considered in determining the chief weight of the shirt. As you correctly noted, Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 080817 indicates that under the HTSUSA, garments will generally be classified according to the material of their outer shell, except when the garments have parts or accessories which materially contribute to their character or usefulness. Such parts or accessories must be considered with the outer shell in determining the proper classification. However, HRL 080817 further states that General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 3 is used to determine which part provides the essential character of the garment, and the chief weight of that part determines the classification of the garment. Although parts or accessories may sometimes be considered in the classification of a garment, this does not ensure that they will be determinative of the classifi- cation. Their role in the classification of the garment depends on the result of the essential character analysis which in this case was not necessary due to the existence of the Subheading Explanatory Note to Chapter 62.

Please note, however, that for a part or accessory to be determinative of the classification of a garment, it must significantly affect the character or usefulness of the garment and impart the essential character to the garment. It is anticipated that few parts or accessories will meet both requirements. In this case, the quilted lining contributes to the character and usefulness of the garment. However, we believe it is the outer shell which imparts the essential character. "In general, 'essential character' has been construed to mean the attribute which strongly marks or serves to distinguish what an article is; that which is indespensable (sic) to the structure, core or condition of the article." Harmonized System Handbook: A Guide to the New U.S. Tariff, Office of Reg. & Rulings, U.S. Customs Service, (August 1986), page 14. In our view, the outer shell more clearly falls within this definition than the quilted lining.

We hope our explanation has answered your question, and cleared up any misconceptions you may have gotten from your reading of HRL 080817. Your sample will be returned, as requested, under separate cover.


The quilt-lined men's shirt submitted is classified under 6205.20.2065, HTSUSA, textile category 340. The rate of duty is 21 percent ad valorem. This classification represents the present position of the Customs Service under the proposed HTSUSA. If there are changes before enactment, this advice may not continue to be applicable.


John Durant, Director

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