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HQ 084730

September 7, 1989

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 084730 JBW


TARIFF NO.: 6104.63.2010; 6114.30.3070; 6211.43.0080; 6505.90.6060

Ms. Lori Aldinger
Rite Aid Corporation
P. O. Box 3165
Harrisburg, PA 17105

RE: Classification of Halloween Costumes

Dear Ms. Aldinger:

Your letter of May 9, 1989, on behalf of the Rite Aid Corporation, addressed to our New York office, has been referred to this office for a binding ruling on the classification of Halloween costumes under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


You submitted three costume samples for classification. The first sample, Item # 9922, is a knitted polyester cave man outfit with what appears to be an accessory head band of the same material. The second sample, Item # 9918, is a knitted polyester convict suit with a matching cap of the same material. The third sample, Item # 9920, is a pirate costume consisting of knit polyester pants and headpiece and a woven nylon vest. The samples are packaged for retail sale.


What is the classification of the Halloween costumes under the HTSUSA?


The General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) set forth the legal framework in which merchandise is to be classified under the HTSUSA. GRI 1 requires that classification be determined first according to the terms of the headings of the tariff and any relative section or chapter notes and, unless otherwise required, according to the remaining GRI's.

Heading 9505, HTSUSA, provides for festive, carnival, or other entertainment articles. However, Legal Note 1(e) to this Chapter excludes from this Chapter "fancy dress" of textiles of Chapters 61 or 62. Prior Customs ruling letters have interpreted masquerade or party costumes of textile materials to fall within the exclusion of the Legal Note. Halloween costumes are therefore classifiable in either Chapter 61 or Chapter 62 of Section XI.

The costumes under consideration are retail packages containing items that are classifiable under different headings. The cave man costume consists of an outfit classified under Heading 6114 and a headband classified under Heading 6505. The convict costume consists of a convict suit covered under Heading 6114, and a convict hat, classified under Heading 6505. The pirate costume package contains pants, classified under Heading 6104, a vest classified under Heading 6211, and a headpiece, classified under Heading 6505. Note 13 of Section XI requires that textile garments of different headings be separately classified, even if put up in sets for retail sale. This Note, however, does not prevent single garments packaged with other items from being classified as sets.

The cave man and convict costume packages each contain a single garment with another item and, consequently, are not within the exclusion of Section Note 13. GRI 3 applies when goods are classifiable under two or more headings. GRI 3(b) covers goods put up in sets for retail sale. The Explanatory Notes, which represent the official interpretation of the HTSUSA at the international level, for GRI 3(b) define "goods put up in sets for retail sale." Such goods: (a) consist of at least two different articles that are classifiable in different headings, (b) consist of products put up together to meet a particular need or carry out a specific activity, and (c) are put up in a manner suitable for sale directly to users without repacking. The cave man and convict costumes therefore are sets, the specific activity being the participation in Halloween activities.

GRI 3(b) requires classification of goods put up in sets as if they consisted of the component that gives them their essential character. The Explanatory Notes state that the factor determining essential character may vary as between different kinds of goods. The Notes suggest that essential character may be determined by the nature of a component or material, its bulk, quantity, weight, or value, or by the role of a constituent material in relation to the use of the goods. The garment imparts the essential character to the cave man or convict set. The garment has the greatest bulk, weight, and value, and it provides the principal costume feature of the set.

The garments are not identifiable as men's or women's, even though the cut of the cave man suit requires that a woman wear a shirt or other top, and therefore are considered under women's garments. The construction and design of the cave man and convict costumes do not permit the garments to be classified within a more precisely defined heading and, consequently, these items are classifiable under "other" categories. These items, constructed of knitted polyester, are classified under subheading 6114.30.3070, HTSUSA, other garments, knitted or crocheted, of man-made fibers, other, other, women's or girl's.

The pirate costume consists of two garments classified under separate headings and, therefore, according to Section Note 13, may not be considered a set. The items must be separately classified. According to the Textile and Apparel Category Guidelines, CIE 13/88, "trousers" or "breeches" are outerwear garments with leg separations extending to the upper thigh or below. They are held to the body by, among other ways, elasticized waistbands. The pants meet this description and consequently, being constructed of knitted polyester, are classified under subheading 6104.63.2010, HTSUSA, as women's trousers or breeches, of synthetic fibers. The vest is made of woven nylon and is classified under subheading 6211.43.0080, HTSUSA, as other garments, women's or girl's, of man-made fibers, vests. The headpiece is classified under subheading 6505.90.6060, HTSUSA, as other headgear, knitted, of man-made fibers, not in part of braid.


The cave man costume, Item # 9922, and the convict costume, Item # 9918, are classified under subheading 6114.30.3070, HTSUSA, and fall within textile category 659. The applicable rate of duty is 16.1 percent ad valorem. Garments and clothing accessories entered as components of sets require separate visas and separate statistical reporting for quota purposes, pursuant to the directive of December 23, 1988, from the Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements. The textile category for the cave man headband and the convict hat, from subheading 6505.90.6060, HTSUSA, is 659.

The items in the pirate costume, Item # 9920, are classified separately: the pants, under subheading 6104.63.2010, HTSUSA, rate of duty, 30 percent ad valorem, textile category 648; the vest under subheading 6211.43.0080, HTSUSA, rate of duty, 17 percent ad valorem, textile category 659; and, the headpiece under subheading 6505.90.6060, HTSUSA, rate of duty, 39.7 cents per kilogram plus 14.1 percent ad valorem, textile category 659.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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