Tariff Classification of LED lamps

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Case law

On 10 May 2012, the Netherlands Customs Court of First Instance decided on the tariff classification of LED lamps. The importer had customs cleared the LED lamps under 85414010, at 0% duty, whilst Customs was of the opinion that heading 8541 is for single Light Emitting Diodes only. The Court agreed with Customs and stated that the LED lamps had an own function that was not specified elsewhere in chapter 85, as a result of which the lamps should be declared under 8543. It came to my knowledge that Customs sometimes also accepts heading 9504.4099 at 2.7% duty for certain the LED lamps, which seems to be more in line with US CPB tariff rulings on the classification of LED lamps.

In a Court decision, that was released on 6 December 2013, a UK Tax Tribunal ruled about the tariff classification of  LED bulbs. The bulbs have an external shape similar to that of small halogen bulbs, but their light source comes, not from a glowing tungsten filament, but from a light emitting diode (a LED). The Court finds that LED bulbs are properly classified as falling within 8543 70 90.

For more information on the tariff classification of LED lamps and LED modules, please feel free to contact us.

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