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Bar Zel Expediters Inc. v. United States

February 4, 1983

BAR ZEL EXPEDITERS, INC., A/C BEN CLEMENTS & SONS, INC., APPELLANT,
v.
THE UNITED STATES, APPELLEE



Markey, Chief Judge, Davis and Nichols, Circuit Judges.

Markey

MARKEY, Chief Judge.

Bar Zel Expediters, Inc. (Bar Zel) appeals from the judgment of the United States Court of International Trade (Bar Zel Expediters, Inc., A/C Ben Clements & Sons, Inc. v. The United States, 3 CIT 84, 544 F. Supp. 868 (1982)) holding that the imported plastic fasteners are properly classifiable as "sew-on fasteners", under item 745.63, Tariff Schedules of the United States (TSUS), and refusing classification as "articles not specially provided for, of rubber or plastics", under item 774.60, TSUS. We affirm.

Background

The imported merchandise consists of plastic fasteners, known as Tach-Its, used to attach identification tags to clothing and other textile articles.

In practice, a clip of Tach-Its is loaded into a fastening device or "gun" equipped with a hollow needle. The needle is inserted into the article and the fastener is propelled the length of the needle thereby penetrating the article. When the needle is thereafter withdrawn the fastener remains inserted through the article and is held in place by protrusions at either end of its body.

Customs Service officials classified the merchandise under item 745.63.*fn1 Bar Zel protested that classification and advanced a claim under item 774.60.*fn2

The Court of International Trade (Edward D. Re, Chief Judge) sustained Customs' classification, concluding that the imported merchandise comes within the common meanings of "clasp" and "sew-on fastener" and that Bar Zel had not established commercial meanings for those terms different from their common meanings.

Issue

Whether the Court of International Trade erred in holding the merchandise properly classifiable under item 745.63, TSUS.*fn3

Bar Zel says that Tach-Its are neither clasps nor sew-on fasteners because they come within neither the common nor commercial meanings of those terms. We disagree.

I. Common Meaning

A. Clasps

In United States v. Murphy & Co., 13 Ct. Cust. Appls 456, 461, T.D. 41348 (1926) and in United States v. Clarke & Co., 13 Ct. Cust. Appls 462, 465, T.D. 41349 (1926), the Court of Customs Appeals,*fn4 ...


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