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HQ 957982

August 3, 1995

CLA-2 R:C:M 957982 MMC


TARIFF NO.: 7013.90.35

Mr. Bruce Melillo
Riverside Sales Company
600 Columbus Avenue Rm 7M
New York, New York 10024

RE: Glass candle holders; HRLs 088742, 950245 and 950426; CIE 322/64 , T.D. 56111 (75).

Dear Mr. Melillo:

This is in response to your letters dated April 6, and 22, 1995, requesting a binding ruling, for glass candle holders under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Samples were submitted.


The articles are cylindrical glass vessels made from low quality clear glass. Your estimated cost of each vessel is between 15 and 20›. They are imported into the U.S. empty and then filled with a wick and candle wax. Both styles have a fired lip, mold seams and knurling on the bottom. One style is approximately 8" tall and 2" in diameter. The second style measures approximately 4" tall with a 2«" diameter. It has a beveled diamond pattern half way up its exterior. After importation, a "Yahrzeit Memorial Lamp" label, written in both English and Hebrew, is added.

You state that in their finished condition both articles are sold to be burned in a house of worship or a home for religious or memorial purposes, such as the memory of a deceased family member.


What is the proper classification of the glass vessels?


Classification of merchandise under the HTSUS is in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's). GRI 1, HTSUS, 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.

Subheading 7013.99.35, HTSUS, provides for glassware of a kind used for table, kitchen, toilet, office, indoor decoration or similar purposes (other than that of heading 7010 or 7018)...other glassware...other...other...votive-candle holders. Subheading 7013.99.35, HTSUS, is considered a use provision. In other words, an article's principal use at the time of importation determines whether it is classifiable within a particular class or kind.

In Headquarters Ruling Letter(HRL) 088742 dated April 22, 1991, and HRL 950245 dated December 10, 1991, Customs explained that a glass votive candle holder is chiefly used in houses of worship or in the home for devotional or memorial purposes. Additionally, Customs has held that votive candle holders are generally of two types, large vessels which contain candles that burn for about a week and smaller vessels which hold candles that burn for a few hours. The large glasses are also known as "sanctuary lamps" and are sold with candles molded into them See, CIE 322/64 dated February 20, 1964, T.D. 56111 (75), 99 Treas. Dec. 108 (1964).

The principal use of the subject glass vessels is as candle holders for devotional purposes. According to the importer, the subject articles will be combined with candle wax and a wick and used as a religious or memorial candle. They will be sold to houses of worship and in retail stores to be burned for the purposes of prayer or in memory of a deceased family member.

The physical form of the 8" vessel indicates that it is the type of candle holder commonly known as a sanctuary lamp which is uniquely suited for devotional purposes. In Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 950426 dated June 19,1992, Customs held that 8" candle holders described as "Novena Candles" were sanctuary lamps. "Novena" is defined as "a devotion consisting of prayers or services on nine consecutive days" in the Roman Catholic Church. The Random House Dictionary of the English Language (1983). The 8" sample in this case is identical to those classified in HRL 950426.

Furthermore, we believe the described dedicated use of the 4" candle, together with the after importation label pasted on the vessel, indicate that it belongs to the class of smaller devotional candle holders referred to above.


The subject candle holders are votive for tariff purposes and therefore, are classifiable under subheading 7013.99.35, HTSUS, with a column one rate of duty of 6.6% ad valorem.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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