Guidance

Mobile phone cases (Tariff notice 10)

Check the tariff classification of a case, with or without a closing mechanism, covering the back, sides and front of a mobile phone.

A new explanatory note to the Combined Nomenclature of the European Union dated 13 March 2018 has been published in 2018/C95/05.

Explanatory Notes to the Combined Nomenclature of the European Union (2018/C95/05)

Pursuant to Article 9(1)(a) of Council Regulation (EEC) No 2658/87(1), the Explanatory Notes to the Combined Nomenclature of the European Union(2) are hereby amended as follows:

On page 198:

4202 31 00 to 4202 39 00 Articles of a kind normally carried in the pocket or in the handbag

The following text is inserted after the existing text:

‘Mobile phone cases of these subheadings are covered by the first part of the heading text and, consequently, may be made of any material. They may be designed to fit a specific mobile phone or different models of mobile phones having the same measurements. They may or may not have a closing mechanism. They encase the mobile phone by covering the back, the sides and the front side of the mobile phone in order to protect it. Simple cases covering only the back and the sides of the mobile phone are however excluded, as they do not have the characteristics of cases of heading 4202 and are classified according to their constituent material. However, these subheadings do not include cases, whether or not with stands, for tablet Computers, mini-tablet Computers or e-books, because, due to their size, they are not considered as being articles normally carried in the pocket or in the handbag (classification under subheadings 4202 91 80 to 4202 99 00, according to the constituent material). These cases are covered by the first part of the heading text and may consist of any material.’

On page 327 the following text shall be inserted:

‘8473 30 80 Other parts and accessories of the machines of heading 8471

This subheading does not include cases, whether or not with stands, for tablet Computers (tablet) or mini-tablet Computers (mini-tablet) (heading 4202 or, if they do not have a front cover, according to their constituent material). Such cases are principally designed to protect the back, the sides and the front of a tablet or a mini-tablet and are, therefore, not considered an accessory of the machines of heading 8471 because they do not increase the range of operations of a tablet or a mini-tablet nor do they perform a particular service relative to the main function of the machine.’

Contact details

Tariff Classification
Customs Directorate
10th Floor South East
Alexander House
21 Victoria Avenue
Southend-on-Sea
Essex
SS99 1AA

Email: tariff.classification@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

This is considered a change in UK practice.

This tariff notice is published for information purposes only.

Published 22 March 2018