In ruling N326692 (June 30, 2022), Customs and Border Protection (CBP) discussed the tariff classification of a plastic Apple AirPods case cover from China. The product, identified as an “AirPods Silicone Case-Black,” is made wholly from silicone plastic and is intended to be a protective cover for the Apple AirPods charging case. The cover is specifically designed to cover the Apple AirPods 3 charging case and is not meant to be removed when in use. It’s split approximately 70/30 with a silicone hinge connecting the two parts. The cover has a flap on the bottom, which can be opened to allow a cable to be inserted into the case for charging. The cover also has a hole in the front that allows users to see the charging status of the AirPods charging case. Lastly, the silicone cover has a protrusion on the side with a hole in it, which can be used to attach a provided aluminum carabiner. Once attached, the carabiner can then be used to attach the case to a purse or backpack.
Considering that the AirPods Silicone Case-Black is an article of plastic and is not more specifically provided for anywhere else, CBP determined that the applicable tariff classification would be 3926.90.9985, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “[o]ther articles of plastics and articles of other materials of headings 3901 to 3914: [o]ther: [o]ther: [o]ther.” The column one, general rate of duty is 5.3% ad valorem.
Additionally, pursuant to U.S. Note 20 to Subchapter III, Chapter 99, HTSUS, Chinese products under subheadings 3926.90.9985, HTSUS, unless specifically excluded, are subject to an additional 7.5% ad valorem duty rate. As such, the chapter subheading 9903.88.15 must be reported in addition to subheading 3926.90.9985, HTSUS.