~ A Series of Reduction of Duty Paid by
U.S. Importers of Automotive Parts and Vehicles from Japan ~


There are a number of ways that vehicle and automotive parts companies can lower the duty that they pay for items imported into the United States. While these strategies have been in existence for many years, the use of these strategies has grown tremendously in recent years given the increase in taxes imposed on various goods imported into the United States (especially those manufactured in China).


U.S. Importers of Automotive Parts and Vehicles from Japan and Elsewhere Save Major Duties and Taxes using Tariff Engineering

「Tariff Engineering」(関税分類の再検討)による、自動車部品・車両の米国輸入関税の大幅な節減

Tariff Classification and Engineering


Vehicle and automotive parts companies importing goods into the United States may be able to lower the duty that they pay for articles imported into the United States by changing the tariff classification that is used to enter these items. This can be done lawfully when the tariff classification being used is found to be incorrect or when slight changes are made to the design and manufacture of the articles at issue.


For example, in a ruling issued by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) in December of 2020, an importer successfully argued that its two-post vehicle lifts were classifiable as “Other lifting, handling, loading or unloading machinery” in heading 8528 of the tariff schedule as opposed to “Jacks [or] hoists of a kind used for raising vehicles” in heading 8525. CBP had previously ruled that the company’s lifts were classifiable as “jacks [or] hoists” but overturned its decision after finding that the articles did not “pull a vehicle up using a hook and chain or a rope” (which was the function of a hoist) and that they “raise[d] vehicles more than a short distance” (whereas a jack was designed to lift loads over short distances only).

<事例1> 例えば、2020年12月に米国税関・国境警備局(以下、CBP)が回答したルーリングによると、ある輸入者が、同社の2柱式車両リフトは、関税率表の8425項の「車両を引き上げるために使用される種類のジャッキ(または)ホイスト」ではなく、8428項の「その他の持上げ用、荷扱用、積込み用または荷卸し用の機械」に分類できると主張し、その主張が認められた。CBPは以前、同社のリフトを「ジャッキ(または)ホイスト」に分類できると判断していたものの、当該製品は「フックとチェーンまたはロープを使って車両を引き上げる」(ホイストの機能)ものではなく、また「車両をある程度の距離引き上げる」(ジャッキは短い距離のみ荷物を持ち上げるように設計されている)ものであると判断し、当初の決定を覆すに至った。

Additionally, in a ruling issued by CBP in May of 2017, an importer successfully argued that an oil cooler core (which cooled automatic transmission fluid in semi-trucks equipped with an Allision transmission) was classifiable as a “part of [a] heat exchange unit” in heading 8419 rather than as a “part of a motor vehicle” in heading 8708. CBP looked to the section notes of the tariff schedule before finding that the importer was correct in its assessment that the oil cooler cores were classifiable as parts of heat exchange units. This change in tariff classification resulted in a 2.5% duty savings for the importer.

<事例2> また、2017年5月にCBPが公表したルーリングでは、輸入者が、オイル冷却コア(セミトラックに装着するAllison社製トランスミッションの液冷却コア)を、8708項の「自動車の部分品」ではなく、8419項の「熱交換装置の部分品」に分類できると主張し、この主張が認められた。CBPは、部注を参照し、オイル冷却コアが熱交換装置の部分品として分類できるという輸入者の評価が正しいと判断した。この関税分類の変更により、輸入者は2.5%の関税節減の効果をもたらした。

Our Services


To help importers who may not have the bandwidth or know-how to fully engage in the classification process, Sandler Travis & Rosenberg, P.A. (“ST&R”) has professionals with extensive knowledge of the classification opportunities that exist for automotive parts and vehicles. ST&R works with importers by reviewing their current classifications to ensure their correctness and by suggesting design changes to current products that may result in substantial duty savings.

Sandler Travis & Rosenberg法律事務所(以下、ST&R)では、関税分類に係るノウハウに精通していない輸入者の方々をご支援すべく、自動車部品や車両に係る関税分類について幅広い知識を有する専門家を擁しております。ST&Rでは、輸入者の方々とともに、現行の分類が正しいかどうかを確認し、大幅な関税節減につながる現行製品の設計変更をご提案できるように努めます。

Companies requiring expert assistance in identifying potential alternative classifications for the products that they import should contact Tokyo Kyodo Accounting Office (TKAO) at epa.info@tktc.co.jp or ST&R (Charles “Chuck” Crowley can be reached at (914) 433-6178 or ccrowley@strtrade.com and Mika M. McLafferty can be reached at (212) 549-0165 or mmclafferty@strtrade.com).




Sandler Travis & Rosenberg, P.A. (ST&R)
Charles “Chuck” Crowley
Tel: (914) 433-6178
Email: ccrowley@strtrade.com
Mika M. McLafferty
Tel: (212) 549-0165
Email: mmclafferty@strtrade.com

東京共同会計事務所 (TKAO)
所在地:〒100-0005 東京都千代田区丸の内3-1-1 国際ビル 9階
会社HP: https://www.tkao.com/index.html
Email: epa.info@tktc.co.jp

© 2021, Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A. Originally published in the Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report, a daily e-newsletter covering the international trade agreements and global laws, regulations, policies and procedures that affect imports and exports worldwide. Reprinted by permission. Click here for a free subscription.

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