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NY M81275

March 29, 2006

CLA-2-96:RR:NC:SP:233 M81275


TARIFF NO.: 9603.29.8090

Mr. Troy D. Crago
Atico International USA, Inc.
501 South Andrews Avenue
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301

RE: The tariff classification of a Foot Scrubber & Massager from China.

Dear Mr. Crago:

In your letter dated March 14, 2006, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The submitted sample is identified as a Foot Scrubber & Massager, Item Number W008DA08195. The item is a foot-shaped combination foot scrubber and massager made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), measuring 11 ½” x 10 ½”. It features bristles on the top surface that are designed for cleansing and massaging of the feet. Suction cups on the bottom are designed to hold the item in place on the floor or in the shower. The item is valued at $2.20.

Your sample is being returned as requested.

The Foot Scrubber & Massager is a combination article. It can be used in two disparate activities that are prima facie classifiable under two separate headings of the tariff. When used as a massager the article meets the definition of massage apparatus described in heading 9019 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS); as a foot scrubber, the article is provided for in heading 9603, HTSUS. Since no single heading sufficiently describes the whole product in issue, classification cannot be determined by reference to GRI 1, HTSUS. GRI 3 applies when multifunctional goods are put up for sale collectively but are prima facie classifiable under two or more headings of the tariff. GRI 3(b) covers composite goods or goods put up in sets for retail sale and provides that composite goods made up of different components shall be classified as if they consisted of the component which gives them their essential character. In general, “essential character” has been construed to mean the attribute that strongly marks or serves to distinguish the article.

In this case, the essential character of the Foot Scrubber & Massager is not readily apparent. It is our belief that the essential character of the product is not distinguished by either the scrubber component or by the massager feature; the two activities play a more or less equal role in relation to the concept and use of the combination article.

When the component which gives the product its essential character cannot be determined, classification is determined by way of GRI 3(c) which directs that when goods cannot be classified by reference to GRI 3(b), they shall be classified under the heading which occurs last in numerical order among those which equally merit consideration.

The heading which occurs last in numerical order of the two competing headings is 9603, HTSUS. Accordingly, the Foot Scrubber & Massager is classifiable in subheading 9603.29.8090, HTSUS, which provides for “other toilet brushes for use on the person Valued over 40 cents each, Other.” The rate of duty will be 0.3 cents each plus 3.6% ad valorem.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at http://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/.

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

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