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NY K87248

July 7, 2004

CLA-2:RR:NC:1:110 K87248


TARIFF NO.: 8537.10.9070

Ms. Margaret A. Purvis
4605 Coates Drive
Fairburn, GA 30213

RE: The tariff classification of rubber silicon/elastromeric keypads from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand or Mexico.

Dear Purvis:

In your letter dated June 23, 2004 on behalf of your client Daetwyler you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The merchandise under consideration is Daetwyler I/O Devices. Samples of the devices were provided with your ruling request and will be returned to you. You describe the samples as “rubber silicon” (a compound) or “elastromeric” keypads. The samples are made of silicone, an elastomeric material, that is considered to be a plastic for tariff purposes and is not excluded from classification in Chapter 85 as per Section XVI, Note 1(a). These keypads will be integrated into finished products such as instrumentation, medical equipment, automotive, and some consumer electric equipment (i.e., radios, televisions, etc.).

The samples provided are “Conductive” and “Non-conductive” type membrane keypads. The conductive keys feature a carbon fiber silicon puck or small round disk on the bottom of the button. This carbon fiber completes an electrical circuit when depress. The non-conductive membrane keypads are of a rocker button design but do not complete a circuit electrically. They simply push down on a switch mounted on a PCB to complete the electrical circuit. The conductive type appears to meet the description in heading 8537 as a base equipped with two or more apparatus of headings 8535 or 8536 for electric control or the distribution of electricity. Since these are goods of heading 8537, they are not classified as parts (see Section XVI, Note 2(a), Harmonized Tariff Schedules of the United States (HTSUS).

The Non-conductive membrane keypads without a conductive carbon fiber puck are usually classified as parts. We are returning your request and sample for a ruling on the non-conductive membrane keys because we need additional information in order to issue a ruling. Please submit information on each keypad, which indicates if it is suitable for use solely or principally with a particular device or type of device. A ruling letter normally addresses a specific set of facts. As it appears that you might be interested in more general information, you might find it helpful to refer to Section XVI, Chapter’s 84 and 85 notes of the HTSUS, available on the International Trade Commission website at www.usitc.gov. Please limit your ruling request to a maximum of 5 items of the same class or kind.

The applicable subheading for the Conductive I/O Devices will be 8537.10.9070, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for “Boards, panels, consoles, desks, cabinets and other bases, equipped with two or more apparatus of heading 8535 or 8536 for electric control or the distribution of electricityFor a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V: Other: Other: Other.” The general rate of duty will be 2.7 percent ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

If you decide to resubmit your request, please include all of the material that we have returned to you and mail your request to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Customs Information Exchange, 10th Floor, One Penn Plaza, New York, NY 10119, attn: Binding Rulings Section. If your request was submitted electronically and the information required does not involve sending a sample, you can re-submit your request and the additional information electronically.

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 above, contact National Import Specialist Eileen S. Kaplan at 646-733-3016.


Robert B. Swierupski, Director
National Commodity Specialist Division

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