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NY 873529

May 4, 1992

CLA-2-:71:S:N:N3G:344 873529


TARIFF NO.: 7117.19.5000

Ms. Lyn Quayle
Kai Tak Australia Pty. Ltd.
P.O. Box 1867
Yelm, WA 98597

RE: The tariff classification of base metal ear clips from Germany.

Dear Ms. Quayle:

In your letter of April 8, 1992, you requested a tariff classification ruling on base metal ear clips.

The submitted samples are base metal ear clips. A ferrite/ceramic magnet is encased in the ear clip. You have indicated in your letter that you intend to market these ear clips as therapeutic products to be worn on particular acupuncture points of the outer ear to aid in the relief of various types of pain and tension.

You indicate in your letter that U. S. Customs in Seattle had advised that this article would possibly be classified under one of three headings listed below:

1. Ceramics: Other Household Articles 6912.00.5000 2. Imitation Jewelry: 7117.19.5000
3. Other Medical Apparatus: 9018.90.9000

The classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) if governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1, HTSUSA, states in part that "for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes..."

Heading 6912 provides for "Ceramic tableware, kitchenware, toilet articles, and other household articles."

Heading 9018 provides for "Instruments and appliances used in medical, surgical, dental or veterinary sciences..."

Heading 7117 provides for "Imitation jewelry..." Chapter 71, Note 8. (a) defines imitation jewelry as: "Any small objects of personal adornment (gem-set or not) (for example, rings, bracelets, necklaces, brooches, earrings...)"

Although the base metal ear clips could be considered as not being ornamental, they are earrings and are meant to be worn on the ears.

In keeping with GRI 1, this office does not believe that the base metal ear clips would be classified under either of the two aforementioned headings, but more properly classified under heading 7117 which provides for imitation jewelry.

Accordingly, the applicable subheading for the base metal ear clips will be 7117.19.5000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for imitation jewelry: of base metal, whether or not plated with precious metal: other: other. The rate of duty will be 11% ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

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.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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