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HQ 956338

June 20, 1994

CLA-2 CO:R:C:T 956338 jb


TARIFF NO.: 6202.93.4500

Susan Kearney
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
702 S.W. 8th Street
Bentonville, AR 72716-8023

RE: Classification of garment as water resistant; Additional U.S. Note 2 to Chapter 62,HTSUSA; NY 847287; detachable hood is not an integral part of the garment

Dear Ms. Kearney:

This is in response to your letter, dated March 22, 1994, regarding the classification of a woman's garment as water resistant. A sample was provided to this office for examination and will be returned under separate cover.


The garment in question, referenced style number JH-03, is a woman's hip-length garment with a woven shell composed of 60 percent acrylic/30 percent wool/10 percent other fiber blended fabric. The garment also features a full front zipper opening with a flap and metal clasps, double-entry pockets with flaps at the waist, an elasticized waistband and cuffs, and a non-water resistant detachable hood, secured by metal snaps, with drawstring closing. For the purpose of this ruling request, you request it be assumed that the outer shell is lined with a woven nylon fabric which meets the water resistance test of Chapter 62, Additional U.S. Note 2.


Whether the submitted garment is classifiable as a water resistant garment?


Classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI), taken in order. GRI 1 requires that classification be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes, taken in order. Where goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, the remaining GRI will be applied, in the order of their appearance.

GRI 3(b) states:

Mixtures, composite goods consisting of different materials or made up of different components, and goods put up in sets for retail sale, which cannot be classified by reference to 3(a), shall be classified as if they consisted of the material or component which gives them their essential character, insofar as this criterion is applicable.

The Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (EN) to GRI 3(b) provide the interpretation of the term "composite good". EN IX to GRI 3(b) states:

For the purposes of this Rule, composite goods made up of different components shall be taken to mean not only those in which the components are attached to each other to form a practically inseparable whole but those with separable components, provided these components are adapted one to the other and are mutually complementary and that together they form a whole which would not normally be offered for sale in separate parts. (Emphasis added)

In the instant case, the jacket and hood combined, make up a composite good. The jacket and hood are mutually complementary and adapted to one another. It is clear that though the jacket component could easily be sold separately, without the hood, the hood could not be similarly sold. This being so, the non-water resistant hood is considered more akin to an accessory to the garment than an integral component of the article. (See also, Headquarter Ruling (HQ) 954939, dated January 6, 1994; HQ 954707, dated October 14, 1993 and HQ 954427, dated October 13, 1993).

The fact that the hood is merely an accessory to the garment is evidenced by the metal snaps which allow the hood to be attached to and detached from the garment, and the non-water resistant construction of the hood. The wearer of the garment has the option to attach or detach the hood accessory to the jacket as is desired. As a composite good consisting of a garment with an accessory article, the essential character of the composite good is imparted by the water resistant jacket and not the accompanying detachable hood.

Chapter 62, HTSUSA, provides for articles of apparel and clothing accessories not knitted or crocheted. Additional U.S. Note 2 to Chapter 62, HTSUSA, states:

For the purposes of subheadings 6201.92.15, 6201.93.30, 6202.92.15, 6202.93.45, 6203.43.15, 6203.43.35, 6204.63.12, 6204.63.30 and 6211.20.15, the term "water resistant" means that garments classifiable in those subheadings must have a water resistance (see ASTM designations D 3600-81 and D 3781-79) such that, under a head pressure of 600 millimeters, not more than 1.0 gram of water penetrates after two minutes when tested in accordance with AATCC Test Method 35-1985. This water resistance must be the result of a rubber or plastics application to the outershell, lining or inner lining. (Emphasis added) Additional U.S. Note 2 to Chapter 62, HTSUSA, mandates a water resistant requirement for garments. As we have already determined that the detachable hood in the subject sample is an accessory to the garment and not an integral part thereof, it need not be water resistant.

In NY 847287, dated November 27, 1989, a water resistant woven jacket with a non-water resistant detachable hood was determined to be a water resistant garment. That decision was based on the fact that the hood was not considered an essential or integral part of the garment, but merely an optional accessory. Similarly, in the instant case the metal snaps which secure the hood to the rest of the garment clearly show that the wearer has the option to keep the hood on the garment or remove it entirely. It is our opinion that as the hood is an optional accessory to the garment, the lack of water resistance in the hood does not preclude the composite garment and hood, from classification as a water resistant garment.


The subject woman's garment, referenced style number JH-03, is classified in subheading 6202.93.4500, HTSUSA, which provides for, inter alia, women's anoraks, windbreakers and similar garments, of man-made fibers, other, water resistant. The applicable rate of duty is 7.6 percent ad valorem and the quota category is 635.

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 negotiations and changes, we suggest that your client check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service which is updated weekly and is available at the local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) categories, your client should contact the local Customs office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints and requirements.


John Durant, Director

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