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HQ 555483

April 11, 1990

CLA-2 CO:R:C 555483 RA


TARIFF NO.: 9810.00.35

District Director of Customs
2nd and Chestnut Streets
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106

RE: Internal Advice Request No. 49/89; applicability of subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS, to educational materials stocked in advance of orders from nonprofit institutions

Dear Sir:

This is in response to your memorandum of August 25, 1989, forwarding a request for internal advice from E. J. Arnold, Inc. concerning the applicability of the free entry provision in subheading 9810.00.35, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), to educational materials imported in advance of orders from qualified nonprofit institutions.


Various educational materials are imported from England by E. J. Arnold, Inc. for sale to school systems in the U.S. In order to provide the speed and efficiency of service which the market demands, the importer states that it is essential to stock these items in advance of orders being confirmed by the qualified institutions.


Will the application of the free entry provision in subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS, be precluded if the orders for the merchandise are not in existence at the time of importation?


Subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS, provides for the free entry of specified articles which are fabricated to specification and designed for the classroom instruction of children if imported for the use of any public or nonprofit institution established for educational, scientific, literary, or
philosophical purposes or for the encouragement of the fine arts. Educational articles which are not specifically designated would not be covered by this provision.

It was the consistent practice under item 851.15, Tariff Schedules of the United States, the predecessor provision to subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS, to require that the articles involved must be imported directly by the qualified nonprofit institution or by an agent acting in its behalf. Absent such a requirement, there would be no assurance that the imported items would in fact be used as the law intended. See Headquarters ruling dated August 13, 1968 (SP 534.2). The requirement that the importation must be made pursuant to a bonafide, pre-existing order from a nonprofit institution and not by a dealer for the purpose of securing a purchaser after importation is one of long standing and has been uniformly applied in all cases. See C.I.E. 1035/67 dated December 6, 1967.

In the instant case, the educational materials were not imported by a qualified institution or its agent pursuant to a pre-existing order for the merchandise. Therefore, the materials subject to this internal advice request are not entitled to duty-free treatment under subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS.


For the reasons set forth above, the subject educational materials are not entitled to classification under the duty- free provision of subheading 9810.00.35, HTSUS.


John Durant, Director

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