United States International Trade Commision Rulings And Harmonized Tariff Schedule
faqs.org  Rulings By Number  Rulings By Category  Tariff Numbers
faqs.org > Rulings and Tariffs Home > Rulings By Number > 2005 NY Rulings > NY L86994 - NY L87041 > NY L87001

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
NY L87001

August 23, 2005

MAR-2 RR:NC:SP:233 L87001


Mr. C.J. Erickson
Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman, P.C.
1133 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036-6799


Dear Mr. Erickson:

This is in response to your letter dated August 11, 2005, on behalf of Stephan & Co. Your request concerns whether it is acceptable to mark the container in which imported jewelry is repackaged in the U.S. with the country of origin in lieu of marking the article itself. Digital photos of representative cartons were submitted with your letter for review.

Stephan & Co. imports commercial quantities of costume jewelry. The merchandise consists of numerous styles of low value imitation jewelry including earrings, necklaces, bangles and bracelets constructed of various materials including metal, plastic and glass, from unrelated suppliers located in China, Korea, India, Hong Kong and the Philippines. The outer shipping cartons of all boxes are permanently, legibly and conspicuously marked with the country of origin of the imported items.

Typically, the merchandise arrives on either cardboard backing cards or in poly bags, packaged in cardboard outer shipping cartons. Subsequent to importation, the goods are sent to domestic contractors who individually mark each product with the country of origin, pricing and other information to accommodate the demands of U.S. wholesale customer. To facilitate this repacking, Stephan & Co. requests authorization to import the individual articles under the marking exemption set forth in 19 CFR Part 134.32(d).

Stephan & Co. proposes to repack the imported merchandise with attached tags that will indicate the English name of the country of origin of the jewelry permanently, legibly and conspicuously. The marking tags will also include description, style number, pricing and bar code information. The country of origin marking will be “Made in Country of Origin.” In addition, Stephan & Co. will furnish with the entry a certification of repacking for all goods which will be repacked at its third party repacker’s facilities.

The marking statute, section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304), provides that, unless excepted, every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the U.S. shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently as the nature of the article (or its container) will permit, in such a manner as to indicate to the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. the English name of the country of origin of the article.

Part 134, Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 134), implements the country of origin marking requirements and exceptions of 19 U.S.C. 1304. Section 134.41(b), Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.41(b)), mandates that the ultimate purchaser in the U.S. must be able to find the marking easily and read it without strain. Section 134.1(d), defines the ultimate purchaser as generally the last person in the U.S. who will receive the article in the form in which it was imported. If an imported article is to be sold at retail in its imported form, the purchaser at retail is the ultimate purchaser. In this case, the ultimate purchaser of the jewelry is the consumer who purchases the product at retail.

An article is excepted from marking under 19 U.S.C. 1304 (a)(3)(D) and section 134.32(d), Customs regulations (19 CFR 134.32(d)), if the marking of a container of such article will reasonably indicate the origin of such article. However, since the jewelry items are not imported in their marked retail container, whether the subject articles are excepted from individual marking under 19 CFR 134.32(d) is for the port director to decide. In this regard section 134.34, Customs Regulations (19 CFR 134.34), provides that an exception may be authorized at the discretion of the port director under 19 CFR 134.32(d) for imported articles which are to be repacked after release from Customs custody under the following conditions: (1) The containers in which the articles are repacked will indicate the origin of the articles to an ultimate purchaser in the U.S.; (2) The importer arranges for supervision of the marking of the containers by Customs officers at the importer's expense or secures such verification, as may be necessary, by certification and the submission of a sample or otherwise, of the marking prior to the liquidation of the entry.

In this case, assuming that the port director is satisfied that the imported jewelry will be repacked in the manner described above, and that the other conditions set forth in 19 CFR 134.34 are met, the port director may authorize an exception under 19 CFR 134.32(d), in which case marking of the imported jewelry will not be required.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR Part 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 Lawrence Mushinske at 646-733-3036.


Robert B. Swierupski

Previous Ruling Next Ruling