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HQ 088569

May 31, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 088569 PR


TARIFF NO.: 6211.33.0030

John M. Peterson, Esquire
Neville, Peterson & Williams
39 Broadway
New York, New York 10006

RE: Reconsideration of DDRL 858624 Concerning the Classification of a Golf/Track Suit

Dear Mr. Peterson:

This is in reply to your submission of January 29, 1991, on behalf of L.P. Henryson Division of Totes, Inc., requesting that this office reconsider the decision in DDRL 858624, dated December 26, 1990. Our ruling on the matter follows.


DDRL 858624 described the subject of that ruling as follows:

A two-piece men's track suit consisting of a jacket and trousers has been submitted. You indicate that this unlined track suit is constructed from 100% nylon woven fabric with a 450mm coating of acrylic plastics and is designed to be worn over regular clothes as a protection from the rain. The jacket portion of the track suit features a full front opening secured by a zipper, long sleeves with elastic cuffs, an elasticized waistband and two slant pockets at the waist. The jacket has an overlay of another color forming a stripe across the chest.

Tha pants are of simple construction in a solid color with an elasticized waistband, snaps at the pants cuffs for tightening and two false pocket openings. The false pockets enable the wearer to reach into the pockets of his [or her] regular pants.

Evidence has been presented in the form of a certificate from an independent laboratory that the material comprising the subject garments meets the requirements of Additional U.S. Note 2, Chapter 62, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) for water resistance.


In DDRL 858624 it was ruled that the subject merchandise is classifiable under provisions for track suits in Heading 6211, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA). It is contended that the subject garments do not constitute a track suit, that they form a rain/golf suit and are, therefore, separately classifiable under provisions for water resistant garments--the jacket, as a jacket, in subheading 6201.93.3000, HTSUSA, and the pants, as trousers, in subheading 6203.43.3500.


The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, Explanatory Notes, which are the official interpretation of the HTSUSA at the international level (for the 4 digit headings and the 6 digit subheadings) state that track suits consist of two garments, one for the upper body and a pair of trousers, which, "because of their general appearance and the nature of the fabric, are clearly meant to be worn exclusively or mainly in the pursuit of sporting activities." (at page 841)

The position has been advanced to this office that the wording "sporting activities" should be broadly interpreted to include most sports, including golf.

We do not believe that the instant garments are track suits for two reasons. First, pursuant to the Explanatory Notes, the two garments do not have the general appearance and nature clearly establishing that they are meant to be worn exclusively or mainly for sporting activities. They are lightweight garments that more appropriately fall into the category of garments used generally for protection from moisture and wind.

Secondly, we specifically reject the position that the phrase "sporting activities" is a general term referring to all types of sports. The term "track suits" was not, in our view, intended to cover rain suits used in miscellaneous sporting activities such as golf, sailing, etc. In order for a set of garments to be commonly and commercially "track suits", those garments must be associated in some manner with running or jogging.

Note 13, Section XI, HTSUSA, provides that unless "the context otherwise requres, textile garments of different headings are to be classified in their own headings even if put up in sets for retail sale."

For the purposes of certain specified subheadings, Additional U.S. Note 2, Chapter 62, provides;

[T]he term "water resistant" means that garments classifiable in those subheadings must have a water resistance (see ASTM designations D 3600-81 and D 3781-79) such that, under a head pressure of 600 millimeters, not more than 1.0 gram of water penetrates after two minutes when tested in accordance with AATCC Test Method 35-1985. This water resistance must be the result of a rubber or plastics application to the outer shell, lining or inner lining.

Imported goods are classifiable according to the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUSA). GRI 1 provides that for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings in the tariff and according to any pertinent section or chapter notes.

GRI 2(a) states that incomplete or unfinished articles are classified as though complete or finished if they possess the essential character of the complete or finished articles. GRI 2(b) provides that a reference to a material in a heading shall be taken to include mixtures or combinations of that material with other materials and that any reference to goods of a given material shall be taken to include goods partly of that material; if goods consist of more than one material, then classification will be according to GRI 3.

GRI 3(a) requires that where two or more headings describe the merchandise, the more specific will prevail; or if two or more headings each refer to part only of the materials in the goods, then classification will be by GRI 3(b). GRI 3(b) states that the material or component which imparts the essential character to the goods will determine their classification. In the event that the applicable headings are equally specific, or that no material or component imparts the essential character, then the goods are classifiable according to GRI 3(c) under the provision which occurs last in numerical order among those provisions being considered.



John Durant, Director

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