United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 2001 HQ Rulings > HQ 963221 - HQ 963685 > HQ 963528

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
HQ 963528

July 27, 2000

963528 AML

Mr. Kenneth P. Robie
Paul Drews Associates, Inc.
65 Koch Road
Suite K
Corte Madera, CA 94925-1242

RE: Clarification of NY A83777, classification of automotive dust/dirt boots.

Dear Mr. Robie:

This is in reference to New York Ruling Letter (NY) A 83777, issued to you by the National Commodity Specialist Division, New York, in reply to your letter of May 8, 1996, which concerned the classification of dust/dirt boots for automotive use under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). We received an inquiry from an unrelated importer requesting clarification of what was perceived to be a conflict between NY A83777 and NY D88139 another ruling concerning the classification of dust/dirt boots.

In NY A83777, dated June 11, 1996, the dust boot was described as a “cone-shaped, accordianed piece of soft, black rubber with holes in both ends . . .” and was classified under subheading 8708.39.50, HTSUS, which provides for parts and accessories of motor vehicles[,] brakes[,] and parts thereof. In NY D88139, dated March 12, 1999, a product described as a constant velocity (“CV”) joint boot kit was determined to be a set with the essential character imparted by the rubber boot, and was classified under subheading 4016.99.60, HTSUS, which provides for other articles of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber, other, other.

By virtue of Note 2(a) to Section XVII, HTSUS, articles of rubber are precluded from classification in heading 8708, HTSUS. Therefore, the holding in NY D88139 is correct. The unrelated importer suggested however, that the holding in NY A83777 is incorrect because the “rubber” article should have been classified in heading 4016, HTSUS, again in reliance upon Note 2(a) to Section XVII.

We have reexamined NY A83777 and determined that the article in question is composed of silicone, a form of plastic, and not rubber. Note 4(a) to Chapter 40, HTSUS, requires that synthetic rubbers be unsaturated synthetic substances that can be irreversibly transformed by vulcanization with sulfur into non-thermoplastic substances that meet certain tests for elongation and recovery. Silicone is not an
unsaturated substance that can be vulcanized with sulfur, and thus it is not considered to be rubber for classification purposes. Instead, it is considered to be a plastic material. Thus, the dust boot that is the subject of NY A83777, being made of plastics, is not precluded from classification in Section XVII, and was correctly classified in subheading 8708.39.50, HTSUS. However, the description of the boot as rubber is inaccurate. NY A83777 should have described the boot as silicone (plastic). We regret any confusion caused by this error. We have advised the unrelated importer of the clarification in that ruling.

We hope you find this information helpful. If you have further questions or concerns, please contact myself or Andrew Langreich of my staff at 202.927.2318.


Marvin M. Amernick, Chief

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: