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NY D89477

April 7, 1999

CLA-2-98:RR:NC:3:353 D89477


TARIFF NO: 9817.00.96

Mr. John A. Edmondson
MSI Med Systems International
2362 James Drive
Pittsburgh, PA 15237

RE: The tariff classification of adult bibs from Pakistan.

Dear Mr. Edmondson:

In your letter dated March 14, 1999 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The submitted sample is an adult bib consisting of woven 100% cotton fabric. The bib measures approximately 24 1/2 inches by 19 inches and has a hook and loop closure at the back. Some adult bibs will consist of woven 85% cotton/15% polyester fabric, and some may have a tie, snap or tab closure.

In ruling NY D85546, dated December 30, 1998, Customs classified the woven 100% cotton fabric adult bib under subheading 6217.10.9510. You have now provided Customs with additional information that this item and the other items are primarily sold to nursing homes and some hospitals who have long-term care units.

Subheading 9817.00.96, HTSUSA, provides for articles specially designed or adapted for the use or benefit of the blind or other physically or mentally handicapped persons. Note 4 to Subchapter XVII, Chapter 98, provides the following:

(a) For purposes of subheadings 9817.00.92, 9817.00.94, and 9817.00.96, the term "blind or other physically or mentally handicapped persons" includes any person suffering from a permanent or chronic physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities, such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, or working.

(b) Subheadings 9817.00.92, 9817.00.94, and 9817.00.96 do not cover 

(i) articles for acute or transient disability; (ii) spectacles, dentures, and cosmetic articles for individuals not substantially disabled;

(iii) therapeutic and diagnostic articles; or

(iv) medicine or drugs.

Thus, according to Note 4, articles classifiable in the above subheading must meet the following requirements: (1) they must be designed for the benefit of persons suffering from a physical or mental impairment; (2) this impairment must substantially limit one or more major life activities; and, (3) this impairment must be permanent or chronic.

The bibs are designed to be used by individuals who are residents of chronic care facilities. These individuals suffer from any number of physical or mental impairments which substantially or completely limit their ability to feed and care for themselves.

The applicable subheading for the adult bibs will be 9817.00.96, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Articles specially designed or adapted for the use or benefit of the blind or other physically or mentally handicapped persons; parts and accessories (except parts and accessories of braces and artificial limb prosthetics) that are specially designed or adapted for use in the foregoing articles: Other.” The rate of duty will be Free.

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 Kenneth Reidlinger at 212-637-7084.


Robert B. Swierupski

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