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HQ 951247

June 24, 1992

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 951247 HP


TARIFF NO.: 6109.90.1090

Ms. Sara Y. Okaya
Mast Industries, Inc.
P.O. Box 9020
100 Old River Road
Andover, MA 01810

RE: NYRL 844661 modified. camisole; underwear

Dear Ms. Okaya:

This is further to your letter of August 21, 1989, in which you requested a binding classification ruling of a woman's camisole.


The merchandise at issue consists of Style 2103, a woman's camisole made of 65% polyester and 35% cotton. The garment is designed with an open work insert in the front and is trimmed with decorative edging.

In NYRL 844661 of September 18, 1989, we classified this garment under subheading 6108.92.0015, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), as other women's underwear. We have had occasion to review that decision and have determined that the ruling is in error.


Whether the original classification of this garment was correct?


Heading 6108, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, women's or girls' slips, petticoats, briefs, panties and similar articles. The General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs) to the HTSUSA govern the classification of goods in the tariff schedule. GRI 1 states, in pertinent part, that "... classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes ...." Goods which cannot be classified in accordance with GRI 1 are to be classified in accordance with subsequent GRIs, taken in order.

Heading 6108, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, women's or girls' slips, petticoats, briefs, and panties. The Explanatory Notes to this heading merely names these articles "un derclothing." Heading 6108, therefore, prima facie provides for underwear at the international level. Heading 6109, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, women's or girls' t-shirts, singlets, tank tops, and similar garments. The EN to this latter heading includes for classification therein singlets and other vests. Webster's New World Dictionary (1988) defines singlets as a "man's undershirt esp. a sleeveless one," and vests as "girls undershirts." See also Funk & Wagnalls New Standard Dictionary of the English Language (1939), defining singlets as "underwear," and vests as "an undershirt, especially one for women's wear." Underwear-type shirts are therefore prima facie provided for at the international level in heading 6109. This, in addition to the fact that there is no provision in heading 6108, HTSUSA, for upper body undergarments, causes us to conclude that classification in heading 6109, HTSUSA, is correct. NYRL 844661 is modified accordingly.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under subheading 6109.90.1090, HTSUSA, textile category 639, as t-shirts, singlets, tank tops and similar garments, knitted or crocheted, of other textile materials, of man-made fibers, women's or girls', other. The applicable rate of duty is 34 percent ad valorem.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent negotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest that you check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report On Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is updated weekly and is available at your local Customs office.

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 importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

In order to insure uniformity in Customs classification of this merchandise and eliminate uncertainty, we are modifying NYRL 844661 of September 18, 1989, pursuant to 19 C.F.R. 177.9(d)(1) (1989), to reflect the above classification effective with the date of this letter. This letter is not to be applied retroactively to NYRL 844661 (19 C.F.R. 177.9(d)(2) (1989)) and will not, therefore, affect the transaction for the importation of your merchandise under that ruling. However, for the purposes of future transactions in merchandise of this type, including that for which the present classification is requested, NYRL 844661 will not be valid precedent. We recognize that pending transactions may be adversely affected by this modification, in that current contracts for importations arriving at a port subsequent to the release of HRL 951247 will be classified under the new ruling. If such a situation arises, you may, at your discretion, notify this office and apply for relief from the binding effects of the new ruling as may be dictated by the circumstances. However, please be advised that in some instances involving import restraints, such relief may require separate approvals from other government agencies.

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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