Ms. Heather Laverty
The Camelot Company
9865 W. Leland Avenue
Schiller Park, IL 60176
RE: The tariff classification of magnetic floor sweeper from China
Dear Ms. Laverty:
In your letter dated December 28, 2018 you requested a tariff classification ruling on behalf of your client, Charles Amash Imports Inc., dba GRIP On Tools. A sample was provided and is being returned to you.
The product in question is referred to as the 17" Mini Magnetic Floor Sweeper, item number GRIP 53417. The floor sweeper consists of a ceramic(iron oxide material) magnetic bar that is attached to a steel bar with a rubber grip. Two rubber wheels are attached to the outer sections of the magnetic bar and as the user pushes the steel bar, the floor sweeper rolls over the ground and this allows the magnet, which imparts the essential character, to retrieve metal articles, such as screws and nails.
Classification of merchandise under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRIs). GRI 1 provides that classification is determined first in accordance with the terms of the headings of the tariff and any relative section or chapter notes. Although not dispositive, the Explanatory Notes (ENs) to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System represent the official interpretation of the tariff at the international level and facilitate classification under the HTSUS by offering guidance in understanding the scope of the headings and the GRIs.
Consideration was given to classifying the magnetic floor sweeper in heading 8716, HTSUS, which provides for non-mechanically propelled vehicles, as you suggested. The ENs describe these goods as non-mechanically propelled vehicles equipped with one or more wheels and constructed for the transport of goods or persons. The main function of the sweeper is not to transport the goods, but rather to remove items from a surface (floor).
Furthermore, the ENs state that "the classification of units consisting of vehicles with permanently built-on machines or appliances is determined according to the essential character of the whole. The heading therefore covers such units which derive their essential character from the vehicle itself. On the other hand, units deriving their essential character from the machine or appliance they incorporate are excluded." In this instance, the sweeper incorporates a magnet, which imparts the essential character of the sweeper. As a result, classification of the magnetic floor sweeper in heading 8716, HTSUS, is precluded.
In your letter, you also suggest that the 17" Mini Magnetic Floor Sweeper be classified in subheading 8505.11.0030, HTSUS, which provides for permanent magnets and articles intended to become permanent magnets after magnetization: of metal: ceramic. While we agree that the article is classified within heading 8505, we disagree at the subheading level.
The 17" Mini Magnetic Floor Sweeper is a composite good that consists of a handle, rollers and a non-flexible magnet that imparts the essential character. Composite goods in which a magnet is used to retrieve metal articles have previously been classified in subheading 8505.19.3000. See NYR N061775 dated May 28, 2009. This office notes that in your letter, you mention that the magnetic floor sweeper is similar to the magnets classified in NYR N289369 and NYR N290319, which classified ceramic magnets in subheading 8505.11.0030. However, this office does not find any of aformentioned rulings relevant, as the subject floor sweeper is a composite good.
As such, the applicable subheading for the 17" Mini Magnetic Floor Sweeper, item number GRIP 53417, will be 8505.19.3000, HTSUS, which provides for Permanent magnets and articles intended to become permanent magnets after magnetization: Other: Other. The rate of duty will be 4.9 percent ad valorem.
Effective July 6, 2018, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) imposed an additional tariff on certain products of China classified in the subheadings enumerated in Section XXII, Chapter 99, Subchapter III U.S. Note 20(b), HTSUS. The USTR imposed additional tariffs, effective August 23, 2018, on products classified under the subheadings enumerated in Section XXII, Chapter 99, Subchapter III U.S. Note 20(d), HTSUS. Subsequently, the USTR imposed further tariffs, effective September 24, 2018, on products classified under the subheadings enumerated in Section XXII, Chapter 99, Subchapter III U.S. Note 20(f) and U.S. Note 20(g), HTSUS. For additional information, please see the relevant Federal Register notices dated June 20, 2018 (83 F.R. 28710), August 16, 2018 (83 F.R. 40823), and September 21, 2018 (83 F.R. 47974). Products of China that are provided for in subheading 9903.88.01, 9903.88.02, 9903.88.03, or 9903.88.04 and classified in one of the subheadings enumerated in U.S. Note 20(b), U.S. Note 20(d), U.S. Note 20(f) or U.S. Note 20(g) to subchapter III shall continue to be subject to antidumping, countervailing, or other duties, fees and charges that apply to such products, as well as to those imposed by the aforementioned Chapter 99 subheadings.
Products of China classified under subheading 8505.19.3000, HTSUS, unless specifically excluded, are subject to the additional 10 percent ad valorem rate of duty. At the time of importation, you must report the Chapter 99 subheading, i.e., 9903.88.03, in addition to subheading 8505.19.3000, HTSUS, listed above.
The tariff is subject to periodic amendment so you should exercise reasonable care in monitoring the status of goods covered by the Notice cited above and the applicable Chapter 99 subheading.
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 the World Wide Web at https://hts.usitc.gov/current.
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 Sandra Martinez at Sandra.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steven A. Mack
National Commodity Specialist Division