Riddell vs. United States Casts Legal Light on Tariff Engineering
Should football jerseys, pants, and girdles be considered clothing or sporting goods for import tariff purposes? Recently, Riddell challenged the Court of International Trade’s (“CIT”) classification of the importation of such items as articles of apparel (Riddell, Inc. v. United States, 2014). Riddell contended the items should be classified as sports equipment, which creates a lower import tariff for Riddell. In deciding the case, the U.S. Court of Appeals rejected Riddell’s argument for the reclassification of the football jerseys and pants but it allowed a different apparel classification for football girdles.