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NY H85752

December 26, 2001

CLA-2-39:RR:NC:SP:221 H85752


TARIFF NO.: 3923.90.0080

Ms. Mollie R. Coyne
Neville Peterson LLP
80 Broad Street, 34th Floor
New York, NY 10004

RE: The tariff classification of plastic hangers.

Dear Ms. Coyne:

In your letter dated October 30, 2001, which was received in this office on November 28, 2001, on behalf of Target Corporation, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Samples of various plastic hangers were submitted with your letter. You indicate that the plastic is impregnated with anti-static and ultraviolet stabilizing ingredients to prolong hanger life while maintaining hanger condition. Styles 120-78T, 140-78T, 170-78T, 170NS-78T, 190-78T, and 190NS-78T are top hangers. Styles 108-78C, 110-78C, 110P-78C, 112-78C, 112P-78C, 112PG-78C, 114-78C, 310-78C and 312-78C are bottom (skirts, slacks) hangers with metal clips. Style 210-78C is a bottom hanger with metal clips for hanging skirts or slacks. Instead of a top hook for hanging on a garment rod, it incorporates a molded plastic extension that allows it to be hung from a top hanger. All of these hangers are of substantial construction, with a molded plastic ridge measuring 5/16 inch in thickness. Except for style 210-78C, these hangers feature a plastic top hook for hanging over a garment rod. The top hook also measures 5/16 inch in thickness along the ridge. The top hook is molded to incorporate a clip for “Top of the Hook” colored size caps. The caps are non-removable at store level, but mechanically removable at the Re-Use Center.

You have also submitted two hangers, composed entirely of plastics, that are not as substantially constructed as the hangers described above. Style 100-78T is a small top hanger with a top hook incorporating a clip for a colored size cap. Style C2108 is of one-piece construction molded to incorporate clips to hold a skirt or slacks. It has a top hook that can be hung on a garment rod, and an additional molded clip at the top of the hook that allows it to be attached to a top hanger for hanging two-piece garments. Both of these hangers measure approximately 3/16 inch at the ridge.

You state that Target uses a closed loop system for recycling reusable hangers and redistributing them to where the garments are manufactured. The clothes hangers are designed to hold imported wearing apparel. All of the imported wearing apparel that Target displays on a hanger is imported already hanging on the hanger. When Target sells a particular garment to a customer, the sales clerk removes the clothes hanger from the garment before giving the customer the garment. Then Target ships the hanger back to its hanger supplier, who cleans the hangers and may commingle them with newly manufactured hangers. The hanger supplier resells the hangers to apparel vendors in the United States and abroad. The hangers are then reused for international and domestic shipment of other apparel articles. Target recycles and reuses the hangers for as long as they remain in good and presentable condition. You have attached recycling information indicating that Target hangers, on average, have four uses.

You indicate in your letter that the hangers will be imported from various countries. All are countries with which the United States has Normal Trade Relations.

The applicable subheading for all of the hangers will be 3923.90.0080, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for articles for the conveyance or packing of goods, of plasticsother. The rate of duty will be 3 percent ad valorem.

You also ask whether the hangers, when imported holding apparel, are separately classifiable from the apparel. General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 5(b) of the HTS provides that, subject to the provisions of GRI 5(a), packing materials and packing containers entered with the goods therein shall be classified with the goods if they are of a kind normally used for packing such goods. However, this provision is not binding when such materials or packing containers are clearly suitable for repetitive use. Styles 120-78T, 140-78T, 170-78T, 170NS-78T, 190-78T, 190NS-78T, 108-78C, 110-78C, 110P-78C, 112-78C, 112P-78C, 112PG-78C, 114-78C, 310-78C, 312-78C and 210-78C are substantially similar to the hangers that were the subject of HQ 964963, 964964 and 964948, all dated June 19, 2001. Those hangers, which were used in hanger recovery systems similar to the one described in your submission, were ruled to be of sufficiently substantial construction to be suitable for repetitive use for the conveyance of goods. Thus, these styles may be classified separately in subheading 3923.90.0080, HTS, even when imported with garments.

Hanger styles 100-78T and C2108 are not constructed as substantially as the hangers in HQ 964963, 964964 and 964948. Though you have submitted information indicating that the hangers described in this ruling are used an average of four times, you have not submitted information substantiating commercial reuse of these particular styles. If you wish a ruling as to whether these two hanger styles may be classified separately from the garments with which they are imported, please submit information on these specific style hangers demonstrating commercial reuse, and indicating the number of times each of these is reused.

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 Joan Mazzola at (646) 733-3023.


Robert B. Swierupski

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