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HQ 951830

June 16, 1993

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 951830 CC


TARIFF NO.: 6204.13.2010

Sandra Liss Friedman
Barnes, Richardson & Colburn
475 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10016

RE: Classification of a women's jacket and skirt; classifiable as a suit

Dear Ms. Friedman:

This letter is in response to your inquiry, on behalf of Junior Gallery, requesting the tariff classification of a women's jacket and skirt. Samples were submitted for examination and will be returned under separate cover.


The submitted merchandise, designated by you as style 8522, consists of a women's sized jacket and skirt manufactured from an identical 65 percent polyester and 35 percent gabardine woven fabric outer shell, with a 100 percent woven nylon lining. The jacket features a full front opening without means of closure, long sleeves without cuffs, slant pockets below the waist, pleated shoulder inserts, stand-up collar and flared bottom. Both the front and rear of the jacket contain four panels: two shoulder and two body panels (the rear ones sewn together lengthwise). Although you state that the jacket does not extend below mid-thigh, a report from our New York office indicates that it extends below. The skirt features a rear zipper, partially elasticized waistband and side seam pockets.


Whether the merchandise at issue is classifiable as a suit in Heading 6204 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA)?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUSA is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes.

Note 3 to Chapter 62, HTSUSA, states that for purposes of headings 6203 and 6204 the following:

(a) The term "suit" means a set of garments composed of two or three pieces made up in identical fabric and comprising:

- one garment designed to cover the lower part of the body and consisting of trousers, breeches or shorts (other than swimwear), a skirt or a divided skirt, having neither braces nor bibs, and

- one suit coat or jacket the outer shell of which, exclusive of sleeves, consists of four or more panels, designed to cover the upper part of the body, possibly with a tailored waistcoat in addition.

All of the components of a suit must be of the same fabric construction, style, color and composition; they must also be of corresponding or compatible size. If several separate components to cover the lower part of the body are entered together (e.g., trousers and shorts, or a skirt or divided skirt and trousers), the constituent lower part shall be the trousers, or, in the case of women's or girls' suits, the skirt or divided skirt, the other garments being considered separately.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, Explanatory Notes, the official interpretation of the HTSUSA at the international level, states at page 852 for Heading 6204 that the Explanatory Notes to Heading 6104 are applicable. The Explanatory Notes to Heading 6104, Paragraph (A), at page 836, state that the term "women's or girls' suit" means a set of garments composed of two or three pieces made up in identical fabric and comprising:


- one suit coat or suit jacket the outer shell of which, (exclusive of sleeves, and facings or collar, if any) consists of at least four panels (two in front and two at the back) sewn together lengthwise, designed to cover the upper part of the body, with a full front opening without a closure or with a closure other than a slide fastener (zipper). It does not extend below the mid-thigh area and is not for wear over another coat, jacket or blazer. A tailored waistcoat may also be included.

You state that the subject merchandise is classifiable as a suit. This merchandise consists of a jacket and skirt that are made up of identical fabric and are compatible in size. The jacket consists of two front panels and two back panels sewn together lengthwise. The jacket is fully lined and tailored. The jacket also has a full front opening without a closure and is not for wear over another coat, jacket or blazer. The subject merchandise, therefore, meets all the requirements for classification as a suit except possibly for one: the jacket may fall below mid-thigh, which would contradict the Explanatory Note that states that for classification as suits, the jacket does not extend below the mid-thigh area.

In an effort to resolve this question, we arranged for two persons of approximately the same height to try on the sample jacket. In one instance the garment fell below mid-thigh, while in the other instance it did not. We therefore cannot state conclusively that the jacket extends below the mid-thigh of the wearer.

According to your submissions, the subject merchandise will be invoiced and retailed as a suit: the jacket and skirt will be displayed on one hanger and will be sold together. This merchandise is in commercial reality a suit. The question is whether it should be excluded from classification as a suit, in application of the Explanatory Notes.

We have stated the following concerning the length of a garment and how it affects its classification the following in HRL 088077 of October 25, 1990:

In addition, the length of a garment in relation to the wearer is dependent on the individual's measurements (dimensions). Accordingly, where it is necessary because of the nature of the garment to determine whether that garment reaches to, or below, the midthigh area, some degree of consideration should be given to reasonable variations in the measurements of an intended wearer.

Therefore, we do not believe that the subject merchandise should be excluded from classification as a suit. Consequently,
the subject merchandise is classifiable as a suit in Heading 6204.


The merchandise at issue is classified under subheading 6204.13.2010, HTSUSA, which provides for women's or girls' suits, ensembles, suit-type jackets, blazers, dresses, skirts, divided skirts, trousers, bib and brace overalls, breeches and shorts (other than swimwear), suits, of synthetic fibers, other, women's. The rate of duty is 37.5 cents per kilogram plus 27.5 percent ad valorem, and the textile category is 644.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories applicable to textile merchandise, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

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 renegotiations 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 internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which is available for inspection at your local Customs office.


John Durant, Director

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