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HQ 965959

April 29, 2004

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 965959 BAS


TARIFF NO.: 6114.20.0060

Mr. Charles Merendino
Mersant International Ltd.
158-12 Rockaway Boulevard
Jamaica, NY 11434

RE: Revocation of NY 869725, dated January 8, 1992; Classification of a tennis brief; HQ 965069, dated September 18, 2002, Incorporated by Reference.

Dear Mr. Merendino:

This is in reference to New York Ruling Letter (NY) 869725, issued to you on January 8, 1992, in response to your letter of December 4, 1991, on behalf of Ellesse USA Inc., to the U.S. Customs Service, requesting a binding classification ruling under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) for a tennis brief/panty.

In NY 869725, a knit ninety-two percent cotton and eight percent spandex women’s tennis brief/panty was classified under subheading 6108.21.0010, HTSUSA, which provides for women’s or girls’ slips, petticoats, briefs, pantiesand similar articles, knitted or crocheted.

Upon review of the ruling, the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has determined that the merchandise was erroneously classified. This ruling letter revokes NY 869725 and sets forth the correct classification determination.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S. C. 1625(c)), as amended by section 623 of Title VI (Customs Modernization) of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103-182, 107 Stat. 2057, 2186 (1993), notice of the proposed revocation of NY 869725, as described below, was published in the Customs Bulletin, Volume 36, Number 50, on December 11, 2002. CBP received no comments during the notice and comment period that closed on January 10, 2003. Final publication of the notice was inadvertently overlooked.


The merchandise under consideration is women’s tennis briefs, styles A3001 (Delia) and A3000 (Diane). The style A3001 (Delia) is constructed from ninety-two percent cotton and eight percent spandex knit fabric and has elasticized waist and leg openings and a lined cotton crotch. Style A3000 (Diane) is identical to style A3001, except that it is manufactured in assorted solid colors.


Are the subject tennis briefs classifiable as similar to undergarments including briefs and panties under heading 6108, HTSUSA, or as other knitted or crocheted garments, in heading 6114, HTSUS?


Classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is made in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI). GRI 1 provides that the classification of goods shall be determined according to the terms of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relative Section or Chapter Notes. In the event that the goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1, and if the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the remaining GRIs may then be applied.

The classification of substantially similar merchandise was addressed in HQ 965069, dated September 18, 2002. The women’s garments composed of ninety-two percent knit cotton and eight percent spandex, style A3001 (Delia) and style A3000 (Diane), are substantially similar in construction and function to the women’s cheerleading brief classified in HQ 965069. While your initial letter stated that the tennis panty/brief at issue was designed to be worn as underwear by tennis players, research on the function of tennis panties indicates that they function in a substantially similar fashion to cheerleading briefs. Like cheerleading briefs, tennis briefs are most often worn under a short skirt. Unlike underwear, they are intended to be exposed to view when the wearer is dressed for appearance in public. While the description of the subject merchandise does not state that the panty has a pocket for tennis balls, most tennis panties also serve to store balls and are therefore exposed to public view when the wearer reaches for a ball.

In HQ 965069, it was determined that the cheerleading brief, composed of 100 percent nylon knit fabric, is classifiable in subheading 6114.30.3070, HTSUSA, which provides for “Other garments, knitted or crocheted: Of man-made fibers: Other: Other: Women’s or girls’.” The legal reasoning and analysis employed in HQ 965069 is attached to and made a part of this ruling letter. As the subject merchandise is substantially similar to the merchandise addressed in the aforementioned ruling, the merchandise would be classified accordingly.


NY 869725, dated January 8, 1992, is hereby revoked. In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the Customs Bulletin.

The woman's tennis brief/panty (styles A3000 and A3001) composed of ninety-two percent cotton and eight percent spandex knit fabric is properly classified in 6114.20.0060, HTSUSA, which provides for “Other garments, knitted or crocheted: Of cotton: Other: Women’s or girls’.” The general column one rate of duty is 10.8 percent ad valorem. The textile quota category applicable to this provision is 359. Headquarters Ruling Letter 965069 is attached to and made part of this ruling letter.

The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided into parts. If so, the visa and quota requirements applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part categories are the result of international bilateral agreements which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes, to obtain the most current information available, we suggest your client check, close to the time of shipment, the Textile Status Report for Absolute Quotas, previously available on the Customs Electronic Bulletin Board (CEBB) which is now available on the CBP website at www.cbp.gov.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa)
categories, your client should contact the local CBP office prior to importing the merchandise to determine the current applicability of any import restraints or requirements.


Myles B. Harmon, Director

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