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HQ 966831

December 22, 2004

CLA-2 RR:CR:TE 966831 TMF


TARIFF NO.: 6201.92.2031

Mr. John B. Pellegrini, Esquire
McGuire Woods, LLP
65 East 55th Street
New York, NY 10022-3219

RE: Reconsideration of New York Ruling Letter (NY) D89498; classification of men’s cotton denim woven shirt

Dear Mr. Pellegrini

Pursuant to your request dated March 18, 1999 for a binding tariff classification ruling of certain men’s cotton denim woven shirts on behalf of your client, Berkley Shirt Company, Inc., Customs and Border Protection (formerly U. S. Customs Service) issued New York Ruling Letter (NY) D89498, dated March 30, 1999. This ruling classified the merchandise in subheading 6205.20.2050, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), which provides for men's or boys' shirts: of cotton: other, other: other: with two or more colors in the warp and/or filling: other: men's.

Upon review, the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has determined that the merchandise was erroneously classified. This ruling letter, therefore, revokes NY D89498 and sets forth the correct classification determination.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930, 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 D89498 was published on May 12, 2004, in Vol. 38, No. 20 of the CUSTOMS BULLETIN. One comment, from you, was received in response to the notice.

You requested that CBP delay the effective date of the revocation because of the hardship that your client would face in fulfilling customer orders due to your client’s inability to obtain the necessary quota. CBP referred the matter to the Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements for consideration and the delayed effective date for the revocation was subsequently allowed.


The description of the men’s cotton denim woven shirt in New York Ruling Letter (NY) D89498, dated March 30, 1999, reads as follows:

[S]tyle 210166AB, is a man's 100% cotton denim woven shirt. The garment features long sleeves with a one button cuff, a one button side sleeve vent, a collar, a full frontal opening secured with a seven button closure, a polyester fleece lining, two buttoned flapped breast pockets and a curved hemmed bottom.

Although a sample garment is not available, Berkley Shirt Company, the manufacturer of the merchandise above, provided to our office a sample that they state is identical to merchandise of NY D89498.


Whether the subject garment is classifiable as a jacket under Heading 6201, HTSUSA, or as a shirt under Heading 6205, HTSUSA.


Classification of goods under the HTSUSA is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation ("GRI"). GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the heading 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. The Explanatory Notes ("EN") to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, which represent the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level, facilitate classification under the HTSUSA by offering guidance in understanding the scope of the headings and GRI.

The issue in the instant case is whether the submitted sample is properly classifiable as a men's shirt or as a jacket. A physical examination of the garment reveals that it possesses features traditionally associated with both jackets and shirts and therefore potentially lends itself to classification as either a coat or jacket under heading 6201, HTSUSA, or as a shirt under heading 6205, HTSUSA.

The garment at issue is considered to be a hybrid garment since it possesses characteristics found on both shirts and jackets. In circumstances such as these, where the identity of a garment is ambiguous for classification purposes, reference to The Guidelines for the Reporting of Imported Products in Various Textile and Apparel Categories, CIE 13/88 ("Guidelines"), is appropriate. The Guidelines were developed and revised in accordance with the HTSUSA to ensure uniformity, to facilitate statistical classification, and to assist in the determination of the appropriate textile categories established for the administration of the Arrangement Regarding International Trade in Textiles. The Guidelines offer the following with regard to the classification of shirt-jackets:

Shirt-jackets have full or partial front openings and sleeves, and at the least cover the upper body from the neck area to the waistThe following criteria may be used in determining whether a shirt-jacket is designed for use over another garment, the presence of which is sufficient for its wearer to be considered modestly and conventionally dressed for appearance in public, either indoors or outdoors or both:

Fabric weight equal to or exceeding 10 ounces per square yard A full or partial lining.
Pockets at or below the waist.
Back vents or pleats. Also side vents in combination with back seams. Eisenhower styling.
A belt or simulated belt or elasticized waist on hip length or longer shirt-jackets. Large jacket/coat style buttons, toggles or snaps, a heavy-duty zipper or other heavy-duty closure, or buttons fastened with reinforcing thread for heavy-duty use. Lapels.
Long sleeves without cuffs.
Elasticized or rib-knit cuffs.
Drawstring, elastic or rib-knit waistband.

Garments having features of both jackets and shirts will be categorized as coats if they possess at least three of the above-listed features and if the result is not unreasonable . . .Garments not possessing at least three of the listed features will be considered on an individual basis. See Guidelines, supra.

CBP recognizes that the garment at issue is a hybrid garment, possessing features of both shirts and jackets. A physical examination of the garment at issue reveals that it possesses three of the Guidelines' jacket criteria:
fabric weight equal to or exceeding 10 ounces per square yard; a full lining; buttons fastened with reinforcing thread for heavy-duty use.

The garment’s cotton denim outer shell and interior fleece lining separately have an average fabric weight of 8 ounces per square yard. The garment’s body portion has a combined fabric weight of 16 ounces per square yard, which is an indication of the garments’ use for outerwear purposes. Further, the combination of the garment’s quilted sleeve lining, full fleece lining, and oversize cut are features characteristic of outerwear garments.

Based on the factors outlined in the Guidelines, we find this heavy construction woven denim garment is intended to be worn over other clothing for added warmth and protection from the elements. Therefore, as the garment sufficiently satisfies the above-discussed jacket criteria and gives the overall impression of a jacket, it is not unreasonable to reclassify the garment in heading 6201, HTSUSA, as a jacket. For some of the rulings issued by CBP which classifies substantially similar upper body garments as men’s jackets of heading 6201, HTSUSA, see Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 966159, dated April 14, 2003, classifying a men’s denim jacket with fleece and quilted polyfill lining in heading 6201, HTSUSA; HQ 960522, dated January 26, 1998, classifying men’s denim stadium jackets with fleece lining in heading 6201, HTSUSA; NY H87763, dated February 26, 2002, classifying men’s cotton denim overshirt with a fleece lining in heading 6201, HTSUSA.


NY D89498, dated March 30, 1999, 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.

Style number 210166AB, is classified in subheading 6201.92.2031, HTSUSA, which provides for "Anoraks (including ski jackets), windbreakers and similar articles (including padded, sleeveless jackets): Of cotton: Other: Other, Other: Blue Denim: Men’s." The general column one rate of duty is 9.4 percent ad valorem, quota category number 334.

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, 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 CPB office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.


Myles B. Harmon, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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