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HQ 954864

October 20, 1993

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 954864 HP


TARIFF NO.: 9404.90.2000

Ms. Teresa A. Otruba
Baker & McKenzie
815 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20006-4078

RE: Stadium seat cushion with heat-retaining chemical pouch is similar to an article of bedding.

Dear Ms. Otruba:

This is in reply to your letter of August 18, 1993. That letter concerned the tariff classification, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), of a stadium seat cushion, produced in an unspecified country. Please reference your client R.G. Barry Corporation.


The merchandise at issue consists of the "Heat and Go," a stadium seat cushion designed with a heat-retaining bladder. The entire cushion is heated in a microwave oven, and the bladder/pouch will retain heat for several hours. The cushion is composed of plastic foam, a textile cover and a 11" x 14" plastic pouch containing water, a wax-type substance, and a heating chemical. The pouch is inserted into a slit in a 11/2" thick 13" x 18" piece of polyurethane foam, encased in a woven nylon shell. The shell has two handles at opposite ends, and a strap with hook and loop fasteners. The cushion may be folded in half for carrying.

We note that the port of Laredo, Texas, has received an importation of this merchandise under Entry Summary No. R42- 00004391. The cushion was entered under subheading 6307.90, HTSUSA, as an other made up article of textiles. The entry remained unliquidated as of September 21, 1993, and should be liquidated in accordance with the results of this letter.


Whether the stadium seat cushion is classifiable under the HTSUSA as pillows, cushions and similar furnishings?


Heading 9404, HTSUSA, provides for, inter alia, articles of bedding and similar furnishings, internally fitted with any material. The Explanatory Notes (EN) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (Harmonized System) constitute the official interpretation of the scope and content of the tariff at the international level. They represent the considered views of classification experts of the Harmonized System Committee. Totes, Inc. v. United States, No. 91-09-00714, slip op. 92-153, 14 Int'l Trade Rep. (BNA) 1916, 1992 Ct. Intl. Trade LEXIS 158 (Ct. Int'l Trade 1992). While not treated as dispositive, the EN are to be given considerable weight in Customs' interpretation of the HTSUSA. Boast, Inc. v. United States, No. 91-11-00793, slip op. 93-20, 1993 Ct. Intl. Trade LEXIS 19 (Ct. Int'l Trade 1993). It has therefore been the practice of the Customs Service to follow, whenever possible, the terms of the Explanatory Notes when interpreting the HTSUSA.

The EN to this heading states that "articles remain classified in this heading whether or not they incorporate electric heating elements." It is our opinion that no sound reason exists to differentiate seat cushions with electric heating elements from seat cushions with electrically (via microwave) heatable elements. Accordingly, we agree with your arguments that the Heat and Go is classifiable within heading 9404, HTSUSA.


As a result of the foregoing, the instant merchandise is classified under subheading 9404.90.2000, HTSUSA, as articles of bedding and similar furnishings, internally fitted with any material, other that of cotton. The applicable rate of duty is 6 percent ad valorem.

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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