International Compliance Specialist
39400 Taylor Parkway
North Ridgeville, OH 44039
RE: The tariff classification of motors from China and Taiwan
Dear Ms. Underwood:
In your letter dated June 4, 2013, you requested a tariff classification ruling.
The merchandise in question are motors/actuators (LA27 model #s: 1115291, 1115291, 11137337, and 1137338, model # 1115285, Hi-Lo model #1165376, Head Actuator model #1167646, and Foot Actuator model #1167647). The LA27 actuators contain switches mounted on a printed circuit board assembly. A printed circuit board positioned on the motor allows a cable connection to be made between the actuator and the control box. The control box contains a toroidal transformer which provides a range of voltage dependent on the current being drawn by the motors/actuators. The actuators are DC brushed single phase motors that have a maximum power output of 104 watts. Model # 1115285 differs from the LA27 actuators in that it contains a thermal fuse to stop the motor when it becomes hot, rather than a switch. Model Hi-Lo #1165376 differs from the LA27 actuators in that it has a maximum power output of 156 Watts. Models Head Actuator #1167646 and Foot Actuator #1167647 differ from the LA27 actuators in that they have a maximum power output of 60 Watts. None of the motors/actuators contain any processor chip or memory module.
The motors/actuators (LA27 model #s: 1115291, 1115291, 11137337, and 1137338, model # 1115285, Hi-Lo model #1165376, Head Actuator model #1167646, and Foot Actuator model #1167647) are designed to operate Invacare Homecare/Long Term Care Electric Beds providing motorized poisoning of the upper body and knees, and bed frame height.
You specifically ask about a possible (secondary) classification of these items under 9817.00.96, HTSUS, as articles for the handicapped.
You distinguish the type of beds that you plan to use these motors in from other Hospital Beds in that they are designed to split into halves, primarily to facilitate their movement. This feature is more useful in home use (including getting it into and out of the home) than in the typical hospital room, whether for acute or nursing home care, since they are usually constructed with extra wide doors, etc. However, intermediate length recovery and hospice care are two very common situations in which a Hospital Bed with motorized foot and head lift capabilities are used outside a hospital room, e.g., in the home. Many firms specialize in the rental and/or leasing of Hospital Beds for home, which is typically recommended over purchase when the usage will be of a limited duration. Hospice organizations often provide a similar Hospital Bed in the home or in some other non-hospital setting as a part of their relatively short term service.
You have not established that the beds that you plan to use these electric motors in were designed for those with a permanent or chronic incapacity, as opposed to an acute or transient disability, e.g., healing from surgery or from breaks in major bones, hospice care, etc, which might also result in needing a relatively transportable bed which has a motorized lift capability at the head and feet. See HTSUS, Chapter 98, Subchapter 17, U.S. Note 4-b-i. Therefore, whether or not these electric motors were specially designed or adapted for use as parts of those beds, they are not eligible for a secondary classification in 9817.00.96, HTSUS.
The applicable subheading for the motors/actuators (LA27 model #s: 1115291, 1115291, 11137337, 1137338, model # 1115285, and Hi-Lo model #1165376) will be 8501.31.4000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for "Electric motors…: Other DC motors…: Of an output not exceeding 750W: Motors: Exceeding 74.6 W but not exceeding 735 W." The rate of duty will be 4%.
The applicable subheading for the motors/actuators (Head Actuator model #1167646, and Foot Actuator model #1167647) will be 8501.31.20.00, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Electric motors…: Other DC motors; DC generators: Of an output not exceeding 750 W: Motors: Exceeding 37.5 W but not exceeding 74.6 W”. The rate of duty will be 2.8%.
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 specifically regarding the 9817.00.96 status of the items, contact National Import Specialist J. Sheridan at 646-733-3012. For any other questions regarding this request, contact National Import Specialist Josephine Heaning at (646) 733-3015.
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).
Thomas J. Russo
National Commodity Specialist Division