Court rules Snuggies are blankets, not clothes or priestly robes

  • 18/02/2017

It's a win-win situation for Snuggie fans and the fashion police.

A US Court of International Trade has ruled Snuggies are not clothing, nor are they robes or priestly vestments.

The ruling came over a decade long dispute between Snuggie-maker Allstar Marketing Group and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and US Customs and Border Protection on how Snuggies should be classified for tariff purposes.

The DOJ argued Snuggies are clothing - which would make them subject to a higher tax rate of 14.9 percent, as opposed to 8.5 percent for blankets.

The Snuggie resembled "clerical or ecclesiastical garments and vestments" or "professional or scholastic gowns and robes", because of both have "have wide-armed sleeves and flow loosely around the body", the DOJ told the court.

However, in a 32-page ruling Judge Mark Barnett told the DOJ that sleeves do not make the Snuggie clothing.

"The undisputed facts show that the Snuggie 'preserve[s]' the 'essential characteristic[s]' of a blanket - a large piece of fabric providing a warm covering," he wrote.

"The sleeves support, rather than detract from, the Snuggie's 'primary design and use' as a blanket because they ostensibly enable the Snuggie to remain in place and keep the user warm while allowing the user to engage in certain activities requiring the use of their hands."