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HQ 961106

April 24, 1998

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 961106 RH


TARIFF NO.: 6110.20.2035

Ms. Kathy Redey
Customs Compliance Supervisor
Eddie Bauer
P.O. Box 97000
Redmond, Washington 98073-9700

RE: Classification of a women's knit garment; subheading 6110.2035; vest; subheading 6110.20.2020; sweater

Dear Ms. Redey:

This is in reply to your undated letter received in our office on September 3, 1997, requesting a ruling on the classification of women's knit garments, styles 010-1562 (regular), 010-1563 (petite) and 010-1564 (tall). The garments will be manufactured in Hong Kong and imported through the Ports of Seattle, Columbus and/or Chicago.

You also submitted a letter dated September 17, 1997, requesting reconsideration of New York Ruling Letter (NY) B87696, dated August 12, 1997, concerning the classification of women's knit garments which have the same style numbers as the garments in question. That request was based on the fact that the construction of the garments in NY B87696 is different from the construction of the instant garments.

Regulations governing the issuance of ruling letters are set forth in Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. Part 177). A request for a ruling letter must contain a full and complete description of the article. 19 C.F.R. ?177.2(b)(2)(ii). Furthermore, Customs ruling letters are issued based on the information set forth in the ruling request and on the assumption that all of the information furnished in connection with the ruling request is accurate and complete in every material respect. If the transaction described in the ruling letter and the actual transaction are the same, the ruling will be applied to the transaction. 19 C.F.R. ?177.9(b).

Moreover, ruling letters will be applied only with respect to transactions involving articles identical to the article whose description is set forth in the ruling letter. 19 C.F.R.

We reviewed NY B87696 and determined that the holding issued in that case was correct based on the facts described in the ruling. Accordingly, as the ruling is not in error, it will not be revoked or modified. Since you have manufactured differently constructed garments with the same style numbers, however, a copy of this ruling as well as NY B97696 should be attached to each entry of garments with those style numbers in order to avoid confusion at the ports.


The articles under consideration are 100 percent cotton knit textured women's garments. They have a full frontal opening with a 5-button closure, a V-neck and a ribbed bottom. The garments are sleeveless and have oversized armholes. They are made from 2/20 9 gauge knit, which has a stitch count of 10 stitches per 2 centimeters (cm) horizontally and 23 stitches per 2 cm vertically.

You contend that the garments are classifiable as vests under subheading 6110.20.2035 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA).


Are the garments at issue classifiable as vests under subheading 6110.20.2035, HTSUSA, or as sweaters in subheading 6110.20.2020, HTSUSA?


The classification of goods under the HTSUSA is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's), taken in order. GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRI's may be applied, taken in order.

Heading 6110, HTSUSA, provides for "[s]weaters, pullovers, sweatshirts, waistcoats (vests) and similar articles, knitted or crocheted." Statistical Note 3 to Chapter 61, Section XI, HTSUSA, provides that:

For the purposes of this chapter, statistical provisions for sweaters include garments, whether or not known as pullovers, vests or cardigans, the outer surfaces of which are constructed essentially with 9 or fewer stitches per 2 centimeters measured in the direction the stitches were formed, and garments, known as sweaters, where, due to their construction, the stitches on the outer surface cannot be counted in the direction the stitches were formed.

A Customs National Import Specialist examined a sample of one of the garments and determined that it has a stitch count of more than nine stitches per two centimeters measured in the horizontal direction. Therefore, it does not meet the terms of Statistical Note 3, Chapter 61, for classification as a sweater. Accordingly, the four styles of garments under consideration in this ruling are classifiable as vests under subheading 6110.20.2035, HTSUSA.


Styles 010-1562 (regular), 010-1563 (petite) and 010-1564 (tall) are classifiable as vests under subheading 6110.20.2035, HTSUSA. They are dutiable at the general one column rate at 19 percent ad valorem, and the textile category is 359.

The designated textile and apparel categories may be subdivided into parts. If so, the 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 renegotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available we suggest the importer check, close to the time of shipment, the Status Report on current Import Quotas (Restraint Levels), an internal issuance of the U.S. Customs Service which is updated weekly and is available for inspection at your local Customs office.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact your local Customs office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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