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March 26, 1999

CLA-2-64:RR:NC:TA:347 D89249


TARIFF NO.: 9811.00.60

Mr. Irwin A. Seltzer
H.Z. Bernstein Co., Inc.
2975 Kennedy Blvd.
Jersey City, NJ 07306

RE: The tariff classification of samples from China

Dear Mr. Seltzer:

In your letter dated March 12, 1999, on behalf of your client EJ Footwear Corp., you requested a tariff classification ruling for a footwear sample which you state will be manufactured in China. In addition, you are asking whether or not the labeling used on this sample boot will be considered acceptable marking.

You state that your client plans to import this waterproof boot sample for use in soliciting orders and the readily acceptable method of drilling a hole into the sole of a shoe to render it unfit for resale after importation would in this case, “negate the validity of testing to demonstrate the waterproof condition” of the item. He has opted instead, to mark the item “SAMPLE NOT FOR RESALE” in 3/8-inch tall, highly visible white capital letters on the inside top portion of the boot’s tongue, using what we perceive is an indelible paint, not easily removed.

Subheading 9811.00.60, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), provides for the free entry of samples which are either valued at less than $1 each or are treated to make them unsuitable for any use other than as samples for taking orders for foreign merchandise. In HRL 555552, dated August 10, 1990, it was ruled that nonquota footwear samples may be treated by drilling a 1/4-inch hole in the sole or marked with an indelible stamp “Sample Not For Resale” in a readily visible place, provided that the marking method used is of a sufficiently permanent treatment so as to limit their use only for samples.

Therefore, we are of the opinion that this boot, having been marked with an indelible stamp in a manner and location that is sufficient to render it suitable only as a sample for soliciting orders, may qualify for free entry under the provisions of subheading 9811.00.60, HTS.

We are returning the sample boot as you requested.

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 Richard Foley at 212-637-7089.


Robert B. Swierupski

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