United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 1997 NY Rulings > NY B82646 - NY B83163 > NY B82887

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
NY B82887

March 24, 1997

CLA-2-49:RR:NC:SP:234 B82887


TARIFF NO.: 4909.00.2000

Mr. Rick Catalani
Tower Group International
821 2nd Avenue, #1400
Seattle, WA 98104-1476

RE: The tariff classification of a book of postcards, from South Korea.

Dear Mr. Catalani:

In your letter dated February 21, 1997, on behalf of your client, That Patchwork Place Inc. (Woodinville, WA), you requested a tariff classification ruling.

A sample was submitted and will be retained for reference. It is an assortment of 30 postcards which have been bound together into a paper-covered book. Each 4 3/4" x 6 1/2" card can be detached along perforations near the spine.

The face of each card is printed with a photograph of a traditional quilt made by a nationally-recognized quilter. The reverse side is mostly blank, and appears to be prepared for use as a conventional postcard, i.e., with spaces for message and addressee separated by a vertical line of print identifying your client's name and location. There are also brief credits relating to the particular quilt depicted on the opposite side.

You note that this product contains two identical copies of each of 15 different pictures. This arrangement is intended to allow the consumer to leave one copy of each in the book, and "share" the duplicate by tearing it out and mailing it to a friend.

You suggest that even after being used in this manner, the product will remain a bound book containing a complete set of photos, and that it will then be saved by the consumer. You also note that the product has a high-gloss cover, title page and ISBN number, and that it will be sold in bookstores. In light of all these factors, you propose that it be classified as a printed book in heading 4901, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS).

Based on the Explanatory Notes (EN's) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, we disagree. (While not legally binding, the EN's constitute the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level, and are generally consulted when classifying merchandise.) The EN for heading 4901 states: "This heading excludes printed matter not constituting a literary text, such as printed cards bearing personal greetings, messages or announcements (heading 4909)...". In addition, the EN for heading 4909 (which in part includes, pertinently, "picture postcards") states that such cards "may be in sheet or booklet form."

Accordingly, the applicable subheading for "Traditional Quilts: A Book of Postcards" will be 4909.00.2000, HTS, which provides for printed or illustrated postcards. The rate of duty will be 2.8%.

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

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Carl Abramowitz at 212-466-5733.


Gwenn Klein Kirschner

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: