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HQ 968242

August 30, 2006



TARIFF NO.: 6109.90.1065

Kevin W. Leonard, Esq.
Grunfeld, Desiderio, Lebowitz, Silverman & Klestadt LLP. 399 Park Avenue, 25th Floor
New York, NY 10022-4877

RE:     Classification of “cami-style” upper body garment (style #3310)

Dear Mr. Leonard:

This is in reply to your letter, dated April 21, 2006, to the National Commodity Specialist Division in which you requested a binding classification determination under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) of a certain body-supporting garment (style 3310) on behalf of your client, Warnaco Inc. Your request was forwarded to this office for our reply.


The subject garment, which is made of 81 percent nylon and 19 percent elastane is described by you as a “‘shaped to fit’ cami-styled upper body garment that is designed to provide support for the bust and stomach.” Its features consist of non-adjustable straps and have fabric in the cups that do not provide firm support for the bust line and it also does not have any hook and eye closures or stays.

You indicate that the garment is marketed and advertised as a “moderately shaping camisole”, a “body-smoothing top that is shaped to fit” and “an accent under a shirt or jacket for a great look.”

Your client’s website describes the subject merchandise, entitled “What a Lift!”™ Camisole” as a camisole which provides “moderate control” that “creates a smooth shape.” On another website, your client’s garment is described as follows:

The Nancy Ganz Body Shaping Seamless Cup Camisole, from the Nancy Ganz shapewear collection, creates a slim smooth shape with moderate control with stretch fabric that flattens and smoothes your waist and stomach. This Nancy Ganz body shaper can be worn with or without a bra—the seamless cups have a mesh lining for breathable comfort against your skin [emphasis added]. The slight flare from waist to hip helps the shaper work with your body and also prevents roll-up. The Nancy Ganz Body Shaping Seamless Cup Camisole can be worn alone or under your favorite clothing for a slimmer, new you.

Nancy Ganz Body Shaping Seamless Cup Camisole:

Nylon/spandex fabric for a trim, smooth look

Can be worn with or without a bra

Seamless cups with mesh lining for breathability

Flared waist works with your body and prevents roll-up


  What is the classification of the subject garment, identified as style 3310?


  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 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. The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (EN) constitute the official interpretation at the international level. While neither legally binding nor dispositive, the EN provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUSA and are generally indicative of the proper interpretation of the headings.

Heading 6212, HTSUSA, provides for, "Brassieres, girdles, corsets, braces, suspenders, garters and similar articles and parts thereof, whether or not knitted or crocheted." The EN to heading 6212, HTSUSA, states, in pertinent part:

This heading covers articles of a kind designed for wear as body-supporting garments or as supports for certain other articles of apparel, and parts thereof. These articles may be made of any textile material including knitted or crocheted fabrics (whether or not elastic).

The heading includes, inter alia:

(1) Brassieres of all kinds.

The subject article is sleeveless with non-adjustable straps. Although it provides some support to the bust line, it is not a brassiere. We refer to the Fashion Dictionary by Mary Brooks, which defines “brassiere” as a “close-fitting undergarment shaped to support the bust.” Similarly, Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary (1977) defines "brassiere" as "a women's close-fitting undergarment with cups for bust support. We refer to Headquarters Ruling Letter 952266, dated November 5, 1992, which states:

The basic prerequisites for classification as a brassiere have not changed: brassieres must be designed to be body-supporting garments. That is the purpose for which they exist. The articles at issue are bra-like in appearance, but do not possess any support features that would render them classifiable as brassieres. The straps are non-adjustable, the fabric used in the cups is too loose to be supportive, and there are none of the traditional characteristics of brassieres present such as underwires, hook and eye closures, stays, etc... The cups do not hold the bust firmly in place, nor are they molded or fitted except to the extent that there is shirring underneath each cup. As these garments do not provide body support, classification under heading 6212, HTSUSA, is precluded.

We find the same analysis applies in this case. Although the subject garment has pre-formed bust shaping and some support in the torso area, this is not sufficient to warrant classification as a brassiere of heading 6212, HTSUSA. Moreover, the subject garment does not provide sufficient support to the bust line nor to the remainder of the torso and stomach area to warrant classification as a “similar garment” of heading 6212. In fact, we note that the two-ply fabric that makes up the front of the garment provides only light shaping and a snug fit for the stomach area, but not support akin to the eo nomine articles or any “similar garments” of heading 6212, HTSUSA. See HQ 964224, dated June 13, 2001. We note that the website states the garment has moderate support, has a flared waist that prevents rollup and that it can be worn with or without a bra. Although these features are functional, this is not evidence to support classification within heading 6212.

Rather, since the subject garment lacks the critical support in the bust line and the torso/stomach area, the subject garment is not classifiable as a body supporting garment of heading 6212, HTSUSA. See HQ 950741, dated April 24, 1992, which stated that the addition of some body-supporting features to a teddy does not transform the garment into a body-supporting garment of heading 6212; Id., citing, in pertinent part, the Guidelines for the Reporting of Imported Products in Various Textile and Apparel Categories, C.I.E. 13/88, November 23, 1988 (Textile Guidelines) at 22, which state, “body-supporting garments do not include garments containing Lycra spandex[with] the primary purpose of which is to cause the garment to fit snugly under outer garments.”

Heading 6109, HTSUSA, provides for "T-shirts, singlets, tank tops and similar garments, knitted or crocheted." The EN 61.09 defines "T-shirts" as lightweight knitted or crocheted garments of the vest type with long or short sleeves. This EN also states that heading 6109 includes singlets and other vests that are classified in the heading without distinction between male and female wear.

In this case, it is our view that the subject garment is more appropriately classified in heading 6109 because it is similar to tank tops of heading 6109 as it can be worn as under or outerwear.


The subject garment, identified as style #3310, is classifiable in heading 6109.90.1065, HTSUSA, which provides for "T-shirts, singlets, tank tops and similar garments, knitted or crocheted: Of other textile materials: Of man-made fibersWomen’s or girls’: Tank tops and singlets: Women’s." The general column one duty rate is 32.0 percent ad valorem and the merchandise is falls within textile category 639.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUSA and the accompanying duty rates are provided on the world wide web at www.usitc.gov.

With the exception of certain products of China, quota/visa requirements are no longer applicable for merchandise which is the product of World Trade Organization (WTO) member countries. The textile category number above applies to merchandise produced in non-WTO member-countries. Quota and visa requirements are the result of international agreements that are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes. To obtain the most current information on quota and visa requirements applicable to this merchandise, we suggest you check, close to the time of shipment, the “Textile Status Report for Absolute Quotas” which is available on our web site at www.cbp.gov. For current information regarding possible textile safeguard actions on goods from China and related issues, we refer you to the web site of the Office of Textiles and Apparel of the Department of Commerce at otexa.ita.doc.gov.

Due to the changeable nature of the statistical annotation (the ninth and tenth digits of the classification) and the restraint (quota/visa) categories, you should contact the local CPB office prior to importation of this merchandise to determine the current status of any import restraints or requirements.

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is entered. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the CBP officer handling the transaction


Gail A. Hamill, Chief
Tariff Classification and Marking Branch

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