CLA-2 CO:R:C:G 086775 KWM
Mr. Michael J. Spain
Sonnenberg, Anderson, O'Donnell & Rodriguez
200 West Adams Street
Chicago, Illinois 60606
RE: Jewelry boxes
Dear Mr. Spain:
We are in receipt of your letter dated March 14, 1990,
requesting a binding ruling classification for items described as
"jewelry boxes." Your letter and the samples provided have been
forwarded to this office for classification.
Three samples accompanied your ruling request. All three are
referred to as "jewelry boxes." Each is described below:
Item no. 6161 - The smallest sample provided, this item
measures 3 3/4 inches in length, 3 inches in width and 1 1/2
inches in height. Your letter describes this item as "of a
size convenient for carrying in purse or handbag." The
interior is divided by two rows of fittings, presumably for
holding earrings. The frame of the box is plastic, and the
exterior is covered mainly with "flocked paper." This item
will be imported from England.
Item no. 6269 - This item measures 8 inches in length, 5 1/2
inches in width and 2 1/2 inches in height. The interior of
the box is fitted for holding several items of jewelry. The
lid has four hooks, presumably for necklaces, and a pocket for
undetermined articles. The lower portion has a long slot for
holding rings, and three smaller, open compartments for loose
jewelry. Your letter indicates that the frame of the box is
wood. The interior and exterior are entirely covered with
"flocked paper." This item will be imported from Sweden.
Item no. 6307 - This item measures 8 1/4 inches in length, 5
1/2 inches in width and 3 1/2 inches in height. It is similar
in design to item no. 6269 in that is specially fitted for
holding jewelry. The lid has six hooks, and a pocket. similar
to that in item no. 6269. The lower portion contains a tray
which is fitted to hold rings, earrings, and other loose
items. Beneath the tray is a large open compartment. The
frame is plastic, and both interior and exterior are covered
in "flocked paper." This item will be imported from England.
All three items have a flower design printed or embossed on the
lid. The lids of all three are attached to their respective lower
portion by a hinge along the back edge. A weight and cost
breakdown of component materials was not provided.
How are these items classified under the Harmonized Tariff
Schedule of the United States Annotated?
LAW AND ANALYSIS:
Classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the
United States Annotated (HTSUSA) is made in accordance with the
General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's). The systematic detail of
the harmonized system is such that virtually all goods are
classified by application of GRI 1, that is, according to the terms
of the headings of the tariff schedule and any relevant Section or
Chapter Notes. Then, if GRI 1 fails to classify the goods, and if
the headings and legal notes do not otherwise require, the
remaining GRIs may be applied, taken in order.
After examining the nomenclature, we are of the opinion that
the samples submitted are classified under subheading 4202.90.9050,
HTSUSA, as jewelry boxes with outer surface of textile material.
Our analysis follows.
Jewelry boxes are provided for eo nomine by the terms of
heading 4202, HTSUSA, which reads in pertinent part:
Trunks, suitcases, vanity cases . . . and similar containers;
traveling bags, toiletry bags . . . bottle cases, jewelry
boxes, powder cases . . . of textile materials . . or wholly
or mainly covered with such materials:
(emphasis added). The term "jewelry boxes" is discussed in the
Explanatory Notes to heading 4202, HTSUSA. The Explanatory Notes
indicate that two factors which help determine whether an item is
considered a jewelry box are that it be "specially shaped or
fitted" and that it be suitable for long term use. An examination
of these goods reveals that the internal compartments and divisions
are specially shaped or fitted to hold jewelry. In addition, the
substantial construction of each item, including the smaller box,
indicates that the goods are suitable for long term, repeated use.
We find that these are items within the scope of the heading 4202,
HTSUSA, term "jewelry boxes."
Subheading 4202.92, HTSUSA, provides for "other" goods with
an outer surface of textile materials. The "outer surface" is that
which is both visible and tactile. In addition, the heading
specifically provides for "textile materials" rather than a textile
fabric. Therefore, it will properly include textile flock such as
used here. You have suggested that the material used on the
exterior of these boxes is a paper of chapter 48, HTSUSA, and is
therefore not properly classifiable under heading 4202, HTSUSA.
We do not agree. The dutiable status of the material used to cover
the frame of the sample goods is not dispositive of the
classification question for the completed boxes. Regardless of the
material to which the flock may be adhered, it is the textile which
forms the outer surface of the jewelry boxes. It is both visible
and tactile. In fact, neither we nor the purchaser would be aware
of the presence of a paper product were it not for your disclosure
or destruction of the goods.
Your submission does not indicate what type of textile
material is present on the outer surface of these goods. However,
we believe that it is a man-made fiber, and that these goods are
therefore classified under subheading 4202.92.9020, HTSUSA, as
jewelry boxes having an outer surface of man-made fibers.
Lastly, your letter indicates that item number 6307 is
"convenient for carrying in a purse or handbag." We have
considered this use, and have determined that such would not
normally be the case as required by the terms of the subheading
which provides for goods "normally carried in the pocket or
handbag." Instead, we believe that while such use is possible, it
is merely incidental to a primary use in the home or other fixed
The jewelry boxes submitted in this case are classified in
subheading 4202.92.9020, HTSUSA, as jewelry boxes, with outer
surface of textile materials, of man-made fibers. The applicable
rate of duty is 20 percent ad valorem. The textile category is
The designated textile and apparel category may be subdivided
into parts. If so, the visa and quota category requirements
applicable to the subject merchandise may be affected. Since part
categories are the result of international bilateral agreements
which are subject to frequent renegotiations and changes, to obtain
the most current information available, we suggest you check, close
to the time of shipment, the Status Report on Current Import Quotas
(Restraint Levels), an issuance of the U.S. Customs Service, which
is updated weekly and is available at your local Customs office.
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 your local
Customs office prior to the importation of this merchandise to
determine the current status of any import restraints or
John A. Durant
Commercial Rulings Division