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 > 2007 NY Rulings > NY N007028 - NY N007093 > NY N007042

Previous Ruling Next Ruling
NY N007042

March 9, 2007



TARIFF NO.: 4016.10.0000

Mr. Gordon C. Anderson
C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc.
14800 Charlson Road, Suite 400
Eden Prairie, MN 55347-5048

RE: The tariff classification of the “T-Flex Support System” from China.

Dear Mr. Anderson:

In your letter dated February 13, 2007, on behalf of Tempur-Pedic, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Photographs and descriptive literature of the “T-Flex Support System” were included with your letter. In addition, a sample of the “Cylindrical Flex Supporter,” a key component of the support system, was provided. The cylindrical flex supporters are composed of 85 percent natural latex rubber and 15 percent synthetic rubber. They are cellular in construction. The cylindrical supporter functions instead of a spring. Each supporter measures 4 inches in outside diameter and 6 inches in length. A hole measuring 1 inch in diameter goes through the entire cylinder. The T-Flex Support System itself is a matrix of the individual cylindrical flex supporters held together by nylon straps. After importation the flex support system will be further manufactured to form a mattress by being inserted inside a hollow foam base and topped with an additional two layers of foam. The imported article does not include the two top layers or the hollow base. The flex support systems will be imported in various sizes to accommodate different size mattresses.

As you requested, the sample will be returned.

You suggest classification as a mattress support in subheading 9404.10.0000 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). However, mattress supports are items such as box springs that are designed to be placed under a mattress for support. The T-Flex Support System is not a mattress support but is instead a part used in the manufacture of a mattress. You also suggest classification in subheading 4016.99.3500, HTSUS, as an article of natural rubber. However, the T-Flex Support System is composed of cellular rubber, and articles of cellular rubber are more specifically provided for in an earlier subheading in chapter 40.

The applicable subheading for the “T-Flex Support System” matrix of cylindrical flex supporters will be 4016.10.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for other articles of vulcanized rubber other than hard rubber: of cellular rubber. The rate of duty will be free.

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/.

You have inquired about country of origin marking requirements. 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. 19 CFR 134.1(d)(1) states that if an imported article will be used in manufacture, the manufacturer may be the ultimate purchaser if he subjects the imported article to a process which results in a substantial transformation of the article. The case of U.S. v. Gibson-Thomsen Co., Inc., 27 C.C.P.A. 267 (C.A.D. 98) (1940), provides that an article used in manufacture which results in an article having a name, character or use differing from that of the constituent article will be considered substantially transformed and that the manufacturer or processor will be considered the ultimate purchaser of the constituent materials. In such circumstances, the imported article is excepted from marking and only the outermost container is required to be marked. See 19 CFR 134.35.

In this case, the imported T-Flex Support System is substantially transformed as a result of the U.S. processing, and therefore the U.S. manufacturer is the ultimate purchaser of the imported T-Flex Support System and under 19 CFR 134.35 only the containers which reach the ultimate purchaser are required to be marked with the country of origin.

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 Joan Mazzola at 646-733-3023.


Robert B. Swierupski

Previous Ruling Next Ruling

See also: