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HQ 962925

April 4, 2000

CLA-2 RR:CR:GC 962925 HMC


TARIFF NO.: 7014.00.20

Port Director of Customs
4735 Oakland Street
Denver, CO 80239

RE: Protest 3307-99-100039; Glass Filters; Optical Elements of Glass, HQ 960896

Dear Port Director:

This is our decision on Protest 3307-99-100039, filed against your classification, under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States ("HTSUS"), of various glass filters. The entries under protest were liquidated on February 19, 1999, February 26, 1999, March 19, 1999 and March 26, 1999, and this protest timely filed on May 13, 1999.


The merchandise under protest consists of glass filters already determined to be optical elements of glass by Customs in Headquarters Ruling ("HQ") 960896, dated November 25, 1998. The protestant questions Customs determination in HQ 960896 that the glass filters perform any additional task of providing some optical effect as required by heading 7014, HTSUS. Protestant claims that the merchandise is instead described by heading 7004, HTSUS. To support its claim, the protestant states as follows:

The importer wishes to clarify that the glass filters in question do not perform the requisite additional task, i.e., by providing some other optical effect other than that which is created by absorbing, reflecting, or not reflecting light. The glass filters in question simply absorb, reflect or transmit light. (emphasis added by protestant)

The protestant also notes that the filters are sometimes referred in HQ 960896 as glass lenses and that the filters in question are not lenses. The entries were liquidated under 7014.00.20, HTSUS, as optical elements of glass.


Whether the glass filters are classifiable as optical elements of glass, not optically worked, under subheading 7014.00.20, HTSUS.


Merchandise is classifiable under the HTSUS in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 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, and provided the headings or notes do not require otherwise, according to GRIs 2 through 6.

In HQ 960896, we determined that the merchandise, identical to the subject filters,
utilize light to create different colors by reflecting, dividing or absorbing different wavelengths for the visible spectrum. Furthermore, the merchandise is like the exemplars the ENs provide. The subject lenses are optical elements for the light and photography industry, used with spotlight bulbs and optical equipment like projectors and photocopiers.

We found that the filters were more specifically described by heading 7014 than 7004, HTSUS. We cited EN 70.04, at page 1013 and EN 70.14, at page 1022, and concluded that the filters were more appropriately classified under subheading 7014.00.20, HTSUS. Protestant claims that the filters are not described by heading 7014 because they do not perform any additional task besides simply absorbing, reflecting or transmitting light.

We disagree with the contention that the filters do not perform any additional task and adhere to our decision in HQ 960896. The evidence presented shows that the filters will be used as optical elements for the light and photography industry. The filters block, reflect or absorb specific wavelengths of light. From the information provided, we note that the merchandise is especially designed to customer's specification. The filters are imported as finished products in different shapes and sizes to meet standards of the photography and light industries. In light of the filters' use in the photography and light industry (e.g., projection, color printers, photocopying machines and signal lighting), it is Customs view that the subject merchandise is optical elements of glass that produce a required optical effect. Since we find that the filters are described by 7014, HTSUS, they must be classified under subheading 7014.00.20, HTSUS, by virtue of GRI 3(a). See HQ 960896, for a more detailed analysis.


The glass filters are classifiable under subheading 7014.20.00, HTSUS, as other optical elements of glass.

This protest should be DENIED. In accordance with Section 3A(11)(b) of Customs Directive 099 3550065, dated August 4, 1993, Subject: Revised Protest Directive, you are to mail this decision, together with the Customs Form 19, to the Protestant no later than 60 days from the date of this letter. Any reliquidation of the entry or entries in accordance with the decision must be accomplished prior to mailing the decision.

Sixty days from the date of the decision, the Office of Regulations and Rulings will make the decision available to Customs personnel, and to the public on the Customs Home Page on the World Wide Web at www.customs.ustreas.gov, by means of the Freedom of Information Act, and other methods of public distribution.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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