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HQ 966907

April 26, 2004

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 966907 RH


TARIFF NO.: 4202.92.9026

Mr. James C. Tuttle
Law Offices of James C. Tuttle
82 Wall Street, Suite 1105
New York, NY 10005

RE: Modification of NY G85500; Tool Caddy; Tool Organizer; Heading 4202; Rooster Products, Inc. v. United States, decided June 1, 2000, Slip. Op. 2000-60 (Ct. Int’l Trade)

Dear Mr. Tuttle:

On January 4, 2001, Customs (now Customs and Border Protection (CBP)), issued New York Ruling Letter (NY) G85500 to you on behalf of your client, Arden Companies. In that ruling, CBP classified a tool caddy (a style number was not submitted) commonly known as a bucket organizer or "bucket pockets" under heading 6307 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), as an other made up article. We also classified two other textile tool holders (style G20001 and style G40301) under heading 4202, HTSUS, and a textile belt with permanently attached holster (style G40251) under heading 6307, HTSUS.

For the reasons set forth below, we find that the tool bucket organizer is classifiable under heading 4202, HTSUS. Accordingly, NY G85500 is modified to reflect that change.

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 G40251 was published on March 10, 2004, in Vol. 38, No. 11 of the customs bulletin. CBP received no comments.


A description of the tool holder at issue in this ruling was described in NY G85500 as follows:

The tool caddy is commonly known as a bucket organizer or “bucket pockets”. It is designed to be placed over a bucket to organize tools. The exterior surface consists of a fabric backed embossed compact plastic sheeting. There are eight pockets of textile mesh material that cover the width of the organizer.


Is the tool bucket organizer classified in heading 4202, HTSUS, as a “tool bag” or “similar container”, or in heading 6307 HTSUS, as an “other made up article”?


Classification under the HTSUS 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 GRI may then be applied.

Heading 4202, HTSUS, reads in its entirety:

Trunks, suitcases, vanity cases, attache cases, briefcases, school satchels, spectacle cases, binocular cases, camera cases, musical instrument cases, gun cases, holsters and similar containers; traveling bags, toiletry bags, knapsacks and backpacks, handbags, shopping bags, wallets, purses, map cases, cigarette cases, tobacco pouches, tool bags, sports bags, bottle cases, jewelry boxes, powder cases, cutlery cases and similar containers, of leather or of composition leather, of plastic sheeting, or textile materials, of vulcanized fiber or of paperboard, or wholly or mainly covered with such materials or with paper. (Emphasis added).

Ruling on Cross Motions for Summary Judgement, the court in Rooster Products, Inc. v. United States, decided June 1, 2000, Slip. Op. 2000-60 (Ct. Int’l Trade), held that CBP properly classified a tool holder under heading 4202, as a form of a tool bag, or alternatively, as a similar container, and provided clear guidance for interpreting the term “tool bag” in heading 4202.

The tool holder in the Rooster Products case had two large flared pockets, a couple of smaller pockets, and two loops. The pockets were designed to hold smaller tools as well as nails, bolts, and similar small items. The loops were designed for larger tools to hang from, such as a hammer or a pair of pliers. When the tool holder was used in its intended manner it was worn like an apron around the individual’s waist conforming to the contours of the individual’s body.

The court rejected Plaintiff’s argument that since the tool holder was not specifically named in the heading, it was not classifiable under heading 4202, HTSUS, and pointed out that an eo nomine provision without terms of limitation includes all forms of the article in the absence of a contrary legislative intent. The court further found that the Plaintiff did not overcome the presumption that both the common and commercial meaning of a tariff term are the same. Thus, using various lexicographic sources, the court determined that the defining characteristics of a “bag” are that it must be a container of flexible material with an opening at the top, and that it does not have to close or be capable of closing.

After examining the tool holder, the court concluded that it possessed all the characteristics of a tool bag and that it was, therefore, classifiable eo nomine as a form of tool bag under heading 4202, HTSUS. Additionally, the court found that the tool holder possessed the essential characteristics or purposes uniting the listed exemplars and did not have a more specific primary purpose that was inconsistent with the listed exemplars, i.e., storage, protection, organization and carriage. The court determined that the tool holder protects and stores items while it is in use by “preventing its contents from falling to the ground” and by “holding its contents while work is performed.” Thus, the court said that even if the tool holder were not classifiable eo nomine as a form of tool bag, it was still correctly classified through the application of ejusdem generis as a similar container.

In light of the court’s rationale in Rooster Products, it is clear that the scope of heading 4202 is broad enough to encompass all forms of tool bags, including the tool bucket organizer at issue. The tool organizer’s function is to store and protect items while in use, preventing its contents from falling to the ground, and holding its contents while work is performed. Accordingly, it is correctly classified under heading 4202, HTSUS.


NY G85500 is MODIFIED. The tool bucket organizer is correctly classified under subheading 4202.92.9026, HTSUS, which provides for “Trunks, suitcases, vanity cases, attaches cases briefcases. . .holsters and similar containers; traveling bags. . . tool bags. . .and similar containers. . . :Other: With outer surface of
sheeting of plastic or of textile materials: Other: Other: With outer surface of textile materials: Other: Of man-made fibers.” It is dutiable at the general column one rate at 17.6 percent ad valorem, and the textile category is 670.

There are no applicable quota/visa requirements for members of World Trade Organization (WTO) member countries. The textile category number above applies to merchandise produced in non-WTO member-countries.

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 bi-lateral 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, 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 importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the customs bulletin.


Myles B. Harmon
Director, Commercial Rulings Division

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