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HQ 950172

December 20, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:F 950172 ALS


TARIFF NO.: 3926.20.20

Mr. William J. Maloney
Rode and Qualey
295 Madison Ave.
New York, New York 10017

RE: Reconsideration of PC 861910 dated April 15, 1991, as to Baseball Glove (TMN Turtles) and Baseball Glove (Marvel), PC 861910 Modified

Dear Mr. Maloney:

In the above referenced letter you were advised that, as herein pertinent, Baseball Glove (TMN Turtles) style number 18535 and Baseball Glove (Marvel) style number 18835 were classifiable under subheading 9506.99.15, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) as baseball articles and equipment, except balls, and parts and accessories thereof. We have been asked by our New York Seaport Office to reconsider the result reached in that ruling.


The articles under consideration are 2 styles of vinyl baseball gloves. Both styles have reproductions of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles~ characters on the palm side of the gloves. The two styles appear to differ from each other only in size with style number 18535 being a normal size glove and style number 18835 being a junior size glove suitable for youngsters with smaller hands. Based on pictures of the articles in the importer's catalog, it appears that the subject articles are, except for the aforementioned character reproductions, normal baseball gloves in two different sizes.


Are vinyl baseball gloves more specifically provided for in a subheading other than subheading 9506.99.15, HTSUSA?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's) taken in order. GRI 1 provides that the classification is determined first in accordance with the terms of the headings and any relative section and chapter notes. If GRI 1 fails to classify the goods, and if the heading and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI's are applied taken in order.

GRI 6 provides that "/f/or legal purposes, the classification of goods in the subheadings of a heading shall be determined according to the terms of those subheadings and any related subheading notes and, mutatis mutandis, to the above rules, on the understanding that only subheadings at the same level are comparable. For the purposes of this rule, the relative section, chapter and subchapter notes also apply, unless the context otherwise requires."

After further review and noting GRI's 1 and 6, it is our opinion that the vinyl baseball gloves were incorrectly classified in PC 861910. We note that Note 1(u) to Chapter 95, HTSUSA, specifically excludes gloves (classified according to their constituent material) from classification therein. This is confirmed by reference to the Explanatory Notes (EN's) to the Harmonized System which, while not binding, represent the opinion of the international tariff classification experts that drafted those notes. EN 95.06, in particular, states that sports gloves are excluded from classification under heading 9506.

Since EN 95.06 indicated that baseball gloves are to be generally classified in heading 42.03, we referred to that provision. While subheading 4203.21, HTSUSA, specifically provides for baseball gloves and mitts, it only covers such articles if made of leather or composition leather. Since the subject articles are made of vinyl, heading 4203 is inapplicable to them. We, however, note that subheading 3926.20.20, HTSUSA, provides for baseball and softball gloves made of plastics. We believe that that subheading specifically covers the articles under consideration.


Baseball gloves made of vinyl with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles~ characters reproduced on the palm side of the gloves are classifiable under subheading 3926.20.20, HTSUSA, and subject to a general rate of duty of 6 per cent ad valorem.

Pre-entry classification ruling (PC) 861910 is modified in accordance with the above holding pursuant to section 177.9(d), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177.9(d)).

We recognize that pending transactions may be adversely affected by this modification. If your client can establish, through appropriate documentation, that it has detrimentally relied on the ruling being hereby modified, you may, in accordance with the provisions of section 177.9(d)(3), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177.9(d)(3)), request a delay in the implementation of this ruling.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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