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HQ W968373





November 15, 2006

CLA-2 RR:CTF:TCM 968373 tmf

CATEGORY: CLASSIFICATION

TARIFF NO.: 6212.90.0030

Darla J. Perry
Product Development/Sourcing Manager
Pony Express Creations, Inc.
9350 Trade Place, Suite C
San Diego, California 92126

RE:¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†Classification of ‚ÄúGangsta Lady‚ÄĚ costume bustier with permanently attached garters

Dear Ms. Perry:

This is in reply to your letter, dated June 13, 2006, to the National Commodity Specialist Division in which you requested a binding tariff classification determination under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) of a ‚ÄúGangsta Lady‚ÄĚ costume, style #400201. A sample of the subject merchandise, which you requested returned to you, was submitted together with this request for our review.

The costume set consists of a skirt, cuffs, collar with tie, hat, thigh high stocking and a bustier with attached garters. With the exception of the instant article, a bustier with permanently attached garters, all the other merchandise was classified pursuant to New York Ruling Letter M84453, which was issued to you. As indicated in that ruling, the instant bustier is separately classified as provided by Note 13 to Section XI, which provides that textile garments that are classifiable in different headings must be separately classified. This is the basis for this determination. The bustier was referred to this office for a classification determination.

FACTS:

The subject bustier is constructed of 100 percent polyester knit velour fabric with four plastic vertical stays, two located in the front and two at the back. The front of the garment is decorated with five rhinestone buttons. The garment requires that the wearer put the garment on over the head to be worn. It features a zipper on the side for closure (which does not run the entire length of the seam), removable rubber/plastic adjustable shoulder straps, and four permanently attached garters at the bottom for attachment of thigh high stockings which are included with the costume.

The garment is worn as an outerwear top as a part of the Gangsta Lady costume. You indicate that the subject garment is imported from China, Hong Kong and Vietnam.

ISSUE:

What is the classification of the subject garment?

LAW AND ANALYSIS:

Merchandise is classifiable under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA) in accordance with the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 provides that classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative Section or Chapter Notes. When goods cannot be classified solely on the basis of GRI 1 and if the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes do not require otherwise, the remaining GRIs 2 through 6 may be applied.

Additionally, the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) are the official interpretation of the Harmonized System at the international level. While neither legally binding nor dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the HTSUS. See T.D. 89-80, 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (August 23, 1989).

Heading 6212, HTSUSA, provides for "Brassieres, girdles, corsets, braces, suspenders, garters and similar articles and parts thereof, whether or not knitted or crocheted". Within this heading are four subheadings which provide for the following types of garments: brassieres at subheading 6212.10, HTSUSA; girdles and panty-girdles at subheading 6212.20, HTSUSA; corsets at subheading 6212.30, HTSUSA; and other body supporting garments at subheading 6212.90, HTSUSA. The Explanatory Notes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level, state in pertinent part in regard to heading 6212:

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.

(2) Girdles and panty-girdles.

(3) Corselettes (combinations of girdles or panty-girdles and brassieres).

(4) Corsets and corset-belts. These are usually reinforced with flexible metallic or plastic stays, and are generally fastened by lacing or by hooks.

All of the above articles may be furnished with trimmings of various kinds (ribbons, lace, etc.), and may incorporate fittings and accessories or non-textile materials (e.g., metal, rubber, plastics or leather).

The subject outerwear bustier’s design features four plastic flexible, vertical stays, and detachable and adjustable, clear brassiere straps. Its tricot mesh fabric lining provides form-fitting shape and contour throughout the garment. Sewn permanently to the bottom of the garment are four attached garters, which provide support to thigh high stockings.

The subject bustier is worn as outerwear as a part of a costume ensemble. The bustier provides minimal support to the bust and the attached garters serve as supports for stockings. Based on its features and because it provides the requisite support intended by EN 62.12, the subject garment is classifiable as a similar article of heading 6212, HTSUSA. See Headquarters Ruling Letter (HQ) 954488, dated October 6, 1993, in which CBP determined that a decorated brasserie worn as outerwear was classified in heading 6212 because of its traditional design features and support.

HOLDING:

The subject garment is classifiable in subheading 6212.90.0030, HTSUSA, which provides for, inter alia, "Brassieres, girdles, corsets, braces, suspenders, garters and similar articles and parts thereof, whether or not knitted or crocheted: Other, Of man-made fibers or man-made fibers and rubber or plastics." The general column one rate of duty is 6.6 percent ad valorem and the quota category is 659.

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 ‚ÄúTextile Status Report for Absolute Quotas‚ÄĚ 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 CBP 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.

Sincerely,

Gail A. Hamill, Chief
Tariff Classification and Marking Branch

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