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HQ 961848

November 19, 2001

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 961848 RH


TARIFF NO.: 4418.90.4090

Port Director
U.S. Customs Service
2nd and Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

RE: Protest number 1101-96-100564; Wood flooring; Wood products worked or shaped on edges, faces and ends; Application of amendments to Explanatory Notes; Headings 4409 and 4418, HTSUS

Dear Port Director:

The purpose of this correspondence is to address the Application for Further Review of Protest number 1101-96-100564, which you forwarded to our office for review.

Donohue and Donohue, on behalf of International Hardwood Flooring, Inc., timely filed the AFR on August 8, 1996. The AFR challenges the liquidation of four entries of tongued and grooved hardwood flooring under subheading 4418 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), as other builder’s joinery and carpentry of wood.

The protestant contends that “the tongued and grooved ends are not the equivalent of mortise and tenon or dovetail” and that the flooring is properly classified under subheading 4409.10.2000, HTSUS, as coniferous wood flooring.


The commercial invoice in the entry describes the merchandise in question as “Australian Hard Cypress, tongue[d] and grooved, end matched, kiln dried, select grade flooring in sizes of ¾” x 2 ¼” to ¾” x 5 ¼”.


What is the correct classification of the tongued and grooved hardwood flooring?


Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 965083, dated June 22, 2001 (copy enclosed), states Customs position on the classification of solid wood flooring which is worked on the edges or the face but not on the ends, like the tongued and grooved flooring in this case. Therefore, we incorporate the LAW AND ANALYSIS portion of that ruling in this decision, as it is dispositive of the issue raised by the protestant.


The protest should be DENIED in full. Customs correctly liquidated the tongued and grooved hardwood flooring under subheading 4418.90.4090, HTSUS, as other builder’s joinery and carpentry of wood.

In accordance with Section 3A(11)(b) of Customs Directive 099 3550-065, 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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