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HQ 086691

April 20, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 086691 CRS


TARIFF NO.: 9810.00.4500

Mr. Arnold S. Alperin
Prince George's County Police
Pipe Band, Inc.
1906 Althea Lane
Bowie, Maryland 20716

RE: Band Regalia

Dear Mr. Alperin:

This is in reply to your letter dated March 1, 1990, on behalf of the Prince George's County Police Pipe Band, Inc., in which you requested a tariff classification ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) on the importation of band regalia from Scotland and Ireland.


The merchandise in question consists of various articles of attire and regalia to be worn by Band members. The merchandise includes the following articles of uniform regalia:

1) Hats, commonly referred to as Glengarys or Balmorals, with trim in red and white banding, with a tassel at the rear;

2) Kilts, in recognized tartan patterns, approximately 16 ounces in weight;

3) Coats, tunics and vests in styles suitable for wear with kilts and designed to resemble garments worn in the 18th century;

4) Sporans and other articles of uniform regalia, such as feather bonnets, hackles, quarter ribbons, spats, waist and cross belts, woven tartan hosiery, plaids, tunics and ceremonial maces.

The regalia will not be owned by Band members personally but will be worn in public ceremonies as part of Band presentations. The Band qualifies as a tax exempt organization under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 501(c)(4)).


Subheading 9810.00.4500, HTSUSA, covers regalia imported for the use of any public library, any other public institution or any nonprofit institution established for educational, scientific, literary or philosophical purposes, or for the encouragement of the fine arts.

U.S. Note 1, Subchapter X, Chapter 98, HTSUSA, provides that:

[t]he term "regalia," as used in this subchapter, (subheadings 9810.00.15 and 9810.00.45) embraces only such insignia of rank or office, emblems or other articles as may be worn upon the person or borne in the hand during public exercises of the institution, and does not include articles of furniture or fixtures, nor regular wearing apparel, nor personal property of individuals.

Traditional kilts (as opposed to kilts/pleated skirts of heading 6104, HTSUSA) sporans and other highland accoutrements are not regular wearing apparel, either in the United States or their native land. Since the articles in question will be the property of the Band itself and not the personal property of Band members, and will be worn or carried by Band members only during public performances, the articles in question are all within the term regalia as defined by U.S. Note 2, Subchapter X, Chapter 98, HTSUSA.

However, pursuant to U.S. Note 1, Subchapter X, Chapter 98, HTSUSA, the articles covered by Subchapter X must be reserved exclusively for the use of the institutions involved, and may not be distributed, sold or used for other commercial use within five years after being entered.

You have stated that the pipe Band was organized to promote the advancement of American piping in the Celtic tradition. In addition, the Band has tax exempt status under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 501(c)(4)). Since the regalia will be used by a nonprofit organization for the purpose of encouraging the fine arts (i.e., a certain form of music), the requirements of U.S. Note 1, Subchapter X, Chapter 98, HTSUSA, are satisfied, and the articles in question are classifiable in subheading 9810.00.4500, HTSUSA.

Pipes and drums, however, would not be considered regalia. Bagpipes are classifiable in subheading 9205.90.2000, HTSUSA, under the provision for other wind musical instruments, other, woodwind instruments, bagpipes, and are duty-free. Drums are classifiable in subheading 9206.00.2000, HTSUSA, under the provision for percussion musical instruments, drums, and are subject to duty at a rate of 4.8 percent ad valorem.


The articles in question are classifiable in subheading 9810.00.4500, HTSUSA, under the provision for articles imported for the use of..., regalia. Articles in this subheading are eligible for duty-free treatment.

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.


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