Customs Meeting For West Coast Companies -
August 17th in Portland

FDRA Members on the West Coast:
Please join us for our Trade and Customs working group in Portland, OR for a full review and discussion on footwear trade and customs issues.
August 17th, 10:30am - 4pm (Lunch provided)
Columbia Sportswear: Portland, OR

The International Trade Commission ("ITC") has ruled the outsole layout, the iconic diamond design, of the "Chuck Taylor" sneaker is covered by a valid trademark but that mark covering the midsole design consisting of a toe bumper and toecap in combination with an upper and/or lower stripe was not valid. Both marks had been found valid by an administrative law judge.  81 Federal Register 42377 (June 29, 2016).

The ITC determined that the appropriate relief is a general exclusion order prohibiting the unlicensed entry of footwear products that infringe the trademark found valid. The ITC's recommendations are sent to the president, who has the authority to impose the exclusion. The president follows the ITC's recommendation in virtually all cases.
The United States Trade Representative ("USTR") has announced the results of its review of the petition to add certain travel goods to the list of articles eligible for duty-free treatment under the Generalized System of Preferences ("GSP"). The petition has been approved but only for lesser developed developing countries (e.g., Bangladesh, Cambodia, Bangladesh, and Haiti) and AGOA countries. The decision for the balance of the GSP-eligible countries was deferred. The travel goods covered are those classified in the following subheadings and statistical reporting numbers. 4202.11.00, 4202.12.40, 4202.21.60, 4202.21.90, 4202.22.15, 4202.22.45, 4202.31.60, 4202.32.40, 4202.32.80, 4202.92.15, 4202.92.20, 4202.92.45, 4202.99.90, 4202.12.2020, 24202.12.2050, 4202.12.8030, 4202.12.8070, 4202.22.8050, 4202.32.9550, 4202.32.9560, 4202.91.0030, 4202.91.0090, 4202.92.3020, 4202.92.3031, 4202.92.3091, 4202.92.9026, and 4202.92.9060.
The decision, which is effective July 1, 2016, appears on the USTR website and will be published in the Federal Register shortly.

This year at FTDC there will be a strong focus on trade issues and the inclusion of expert panels exploring supply chain and compliance challenges. Day three of FTDC will be dedicated to customs classifications, the famous live sample review and a review of customs hot topics including FDRA's tariff simplification and athletic footwear initiatives.
A draft agenda will be circulated soon.

Register today to get special early bird rates! 

Comments and suggestions on FDRA's submission to seeking clarification of the term "athletic" are due July 15, 2016.
The submission will be more likely to lead to a change in CBP's thinking if it includes concrete examples (pictures) of: 1) sole configurations that are not suitable for athletics; 2) features that are expected to appear in athletic footwear; 3) features that are inconsistent with athletic use; 4) casual or dress footwear advertised or marketed as light weight and flexible; and 5) rulings that classify obviously non-athletic footwear as athletic.
The current draft is available here
Those of you who have tried to find the Valuation Encyclopedia in recent months found that it is not available. We understand that it is being updated and expect that it will be available in a "relatively" short period of time.
Customs and Border Protection ("CBP") has announced that effective June 30, 2016, ports will no longer be required to send requests for liquidated damage claims relating to Importer Security Filing errors to Headquarters for review. The "three-strike" approach to these claims against will end as well.

The Customs Report is a newsletter of customs legal, administrative and other developments affecting importers of footwear prepared by McGuireWoods, LLP, 1345 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York 10105, (212) 548-7020, as a service for FDRA members and other interested parties. Matters reported on or summarized herein may not be construed as legal advice on specific situations.

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July 2016 
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