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NY F89011

July 11, 2000

LA-2-90:RR:NC:MM:105 F89011


TARIFF NO.: 9021.19.8500

Mr. Bernard Adrien
Fritz Starber Inc.
410, St-Nicolas
Bureau 300
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H2Y 2P5

RE: The tariff classification of joint support devices from Italy

Dear Mr. Adrien:

In your letter, dated June 26, 2000, for M.I.H. International Inc., you requested a tariff classification ruling.

You submitted four samples. Two, the articles 50 and 60, are in their retail package. The other two, the 70 and 37, are not.

The packages for the 50 and 60 describe each in large print as “Multi-centered Rei (n) forced Knee Bandage,” which in smaller print are “preshaped anatomical right and left brace.” The 50 is “Free”, while the 60 is “Graduated.”

The 50’s package states, “Made up of a rigid structure, reinforced with multi-centered splints...” The 60’s package states, “Made up of a rigid structure with graduated multi-centered splints which can be adjusted in flexion and extension.”

Both the 50 and 60 are about 13 inches long. Both are the right knee version. The large metal hinges on both sides of the user’s knee are adjustable on the 60, but not on the 50. In either case, they appear to be capable of immobilizing ligaments in the knee while walking. There is no indication that a healthy person would use them as a preventative item. The selling price shown for the 50 is $57 Can and for the 60 is $74.50 Can.

The 37 is a thumb-wrist splint for the right hand. It is about nine inches long. It has an anatomically shaped, full-length, non-removable, rigid, metal splint which effectively immobilizes the thumb and wrist. It also has an anatomically-shaped, 7 inch long, removable, rigid, metal splint which, when in place, will effectively immobilize the wrist by itself.

The 70 is an “All sport multi-centric hinged knee brace.” It gives considerably less support than either the 50 or 60. Also, the “All sport” implies that it is more likely worn for protection by people who meet normal definitions of healthy, but seek additional support when they chose to engage in sports which put unusual stresses on the knee. Regarding the 70, you must supply the retail packaging and detailed information concerning the several largest purchasers at wholesale from the importer. Specifically, if it is true, provide evidence that this item is “mostly sold to hospitals and specialized orthopedic retailers.”

In addition, you must correct your procedural errors and bring any new request into compliance with the below. Give an explanation if the information is not “known”.


Ruling requests must be in writing, must be filed in triplicate and must contain a complete statement of all relevant facts relating to the transaction including:

* The names, addresses, and other identifying information of all interested parties (if known); the manufacturer ID code (if known); * The name(s) of the port(s) in which the merchandise will be entered (if known); * A description of the transaction; for example, a prospective importation (merchandise) from (country); * A statement that there are, to the importer’s knowledge, no issues on the commodity pending before the Customs Service or any court; and * A statement as to whether classification (HTS or TSUS) advice had been sought from a Customs officer; and if so, from whom, and what advice was rendered, if any.

When this information is available, you may wish to consider resubmission of your request regarding the 70. If you decide to resubmit your request, please include all of the material that we have returned to you that do not apply exclusively to the other articles and mail your request to U.S. Customs, Customs Information Exchange, Room 437, 6 World Trade Center, New York, NY 10048, attn: Binding Rulings Section. If you have any questions regarding the above, contact National Import Specialist James Sheridan at 212-637-7037.

The applicable subheading for 50, 60 and 37 will be 9021.19.8500, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “other” orthopedic and fracture appliances. The general 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 James Sheridan at 212-637-7037.


Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity

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