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HQ 089813

October 17, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:M 089813 AJS



District Director
U.S. Customs Service
511 N.W. Broadway Federal Bldg
Suite 198
Portland, OR 97209

RE: Protest number 91-2904-000057; point of sale terminal kits; peripheral equipment kits; Subheading 8470.50.00; 19 U.S.C. 1514 (c)(1); 19 CFR 174.13; GRI 2(a); GRI 2(a), ENs (VII); H. Conf. Rep. No. 576.

Dear District Director:

Protest for further review number 91-2904-000057 dated 4/18/91, was filed against the tariff classification of point of sale terminal kits and peripheral equipment kits under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


The merchandise under protest consists of components for a point of sale (POS) terminal that are imported unassembled in a kit format. Also imported are components that appear to be accessories for the POS units, such as keyboards, hard disk drives, displays, printers, and the parts for such accessories.


Whether the unassembled POS terminal kits are classifiable as cash registers within subheading 8470.50.00, HTSUSA.

Whether unassembled peripheral equipment kits are classifiable as an "entirety" with the POS terminals or separately.


Protests against decisions of the appropriate Customs officers must be in conformity with applicable statutory and regulatory requirements. Under 19 U.S.C. 1514(c)(1), a protest of a decision under subsection (a) of section 1514 must set forth distinctly and specifically each decision as to which protest is made. United States v. Parksmith Corp., 514 F. 2d 1052, 62 CCPA 76 (1975); American Commerce Co. v. United States, 173 F. Supp. 812 (Cust. Ct. 1959); United States v. E.H. Bailey & Co., 32 CCPA 89, C.A.D. 291 (1945). In addition, the Customs Regulations require that a protest provide a specific description of the merchandise as to which protest is made, and set forth the nature of, and justification for the objection distinctly and specifically with respect to each decision. 19 CFR

The scope of review in a protest filed under 19 U.S.C. 1514 is limited to the administrative record. Customs will consider all relevant allegations that are supported by competent evidence. In acting on a protest, however, Customs lacks the legal authority to assume facts and arguments that are not presented and, therefore, not in the official record.

The protestant claims that the subject POS terminal kits are classifiable as an "entirety" under subheading 8470.50.00, HTSUSA. The term "entirety" is a concept from the Tariff Schedules of the United States (TSUS). It is not a term used under the HTSUSA. The subject kits could possibly be a functional unit, composite good or set under the HTSUSA. However, the protestant has failed to set forth distinctly and specifically the nature and justification for these claims. Therefore, we are unable to properly address this issue.

Heading 8470, HTSUSA, provides for cash registers. It is claimed that the subject POS terminals satisfy the terms of this heading and are presented as unassembled kits. General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 2(a) states that any reference to an article shall be taken to include a reference to that article presented unassembled or disassembled. The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) to GRI 2(a) state that the term "'articles presented unassembled or disassembled' means articles the components of which are to be assembled either by means of simple fixing devices (screws, nuts, bolts, etc.) or by riveting or welding, for example, provided only simple assembly operations are involved." ENs (VII). While the ENs are not dispositive, they provide a commentary on
the scope of each heading and the GRIs, and offer guidance for interpretation of the HTSUSA. H. Conf. Rep. No. 576, 100th Cong., 2d Sess., p. 549, reprinted in 1988 U.S. CODE CONG. & ADMIN. NEWS p. 1582. Neither a specific description of the POS terminal kits nor their assembly process have been provided which would enable us to make a determination regarding the above issues. Consequently, we cannot agree or disagree with the classification of the subject POS terminal kits within subheading 8470.50.00, HTSUSA, as unassembled cash registers.

Unassembled components of an article which are in excess of the number required for that article when complete are to be classified separately. GRI 2(a), ENs (VII). It is claimed that the peripheral kits under protest consist of articles made up into peripheral or auxiliary devices (e.g., keyboards, hard disk memory units and displays) that are used with the POS kits. However, the number of these items does not equal the number of POS kits presented. In addition, the user of the POS kits may select different options among these various items. Lastly, one entry does not cover kits at all, but bulk parts for POS systems. Thus, it would appear that the peripheral kits are in excess of the number required for a complete POS system. Accordingly, it appears that the subject peripheral kits would be classified separately.

Based on the limited information provided, we are unable to determine the separate classification of the peripheral kits. No details are provided which would allow us to determine if these peripheral devices are in fact dedicated POS devices or automatic data processing type units. As stated on the Customs Form 6445A in block 29, "the issue at protest is completely unclear". We agree and, consequently, are unable to make a determination as to the proper classification of the peripheral kits.


Based on the protestant's failure to comply with the requirements of 19 CFR 174.13 (a)(5) & (6), this protest should be denied. A copy of this decision should be attached to the Customs Form 19 and mailed to the protestant as part of the notice of action on the protest.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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