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Elder & Co. v. United States
United States Customs Court
61 Cust. Ct. 50, C.D. 3525 (1968)
An importer (defendant) commissioned two mosaicists to make a mosaic panel inspired by an oil painting and sent the mosaicists, who had never seen the painting, a transparency of the painting. When the importer brought the mosaic panel into the United States, a customs collector assessed a 20 percent ad valorem duty. The Tariff Act of 1930 provided that original works of art could enter the United States duty-free, and that other works of art were subject to a 20 percent ad valorem duty. The customs collector reasoned that the mosaic panel was not an original work of art, because it was inspired by the oil painting. The importer appealed the customs collector’s assessment, arguing that the mosaic panel was an original mosaic.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Richardson, J.)
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