The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain refrigerator water filtration devices and components thereof. The products at issue in the investigation are described in the Commission’s notice of investigation.
The investigation is based on a complaint filed by LG Electronics Inc. of Seoul, Republic of Korea, and LG Electronics Alabama, Inc. of Huntsville, AL, on December 15, 2021. The complaint alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States and sale of certain refrigerator water filtration devices and components thereof that infringe patents asserted by the complainants. The complainants request that the USITC issue a general exclusion order and cease and desist orders.
The USITC has identified the following as the respondents this investigation:
ClearWater Filters, of Lakewood, NJ;
Express Parts LLC d/b/a Express Parts !!!, of Keyport, NJ;
FRESHLAB LLC, of Gainesville, FL;
Zhang Ping d/b/a ICE Water Filter, of Dongyang, Zhejiang, China;
Jiangsu Angkua Environmental Technical Co., Ltd., of Nantong, Jiangsu, China;
Liu Qi d/b/a LQQY, of Lishi, Shanxi Province, China;
lvliangshilishiquhuiliwujinbaihuoshan Ghang d/b/a LYLYMX, of Lishi District, Shanxi Province, China;
Ninbo Haishu Bichun Technology Co., Ltd. d/b/a Ninbo Hai Shu Bi Chun Ke Ji You Xian Gong Si d/b/a Pureza Filters, of Elmhurst, IL;
Ninbo Haishu Keze Replacement Equipment Co., Ltd. d/b/a Ningboshihaishukezejinghuashebeiyou Xiangongsi d/b/a Kozero Filter, of Zhejiant, Ningboshi, China;
Ningbo Bichun Technology Co., Ltd., of Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province, China;
Ningbo Haishu Shun’anjie Water Purification Equipment LLC, of Ningbo, Zhejiang, China;
Pursafet Water Filter (Wuhan) Inc., of Wuhan, Hubei, China;
Shenzen Hangling E-Commerce Co., Ltd. d/b/a Shenzhenshilinghangdianzhishangwuyouxiangongshi d/b/a Best Belvita, of Elmhurst, IL;
Shenzhen Yu Tian Qi Technology Co., Ltd. d/b/a Shen Zhen Shi Yu Tian Qi Ke Ji You Xian Gong Si d/b/a Glacierfresh, of Shenzhen, Guangdong, China;
Aicuiying b/d/a Belvita Water of Shenzhen, of Guangdong Province, China;
ISave Strategic Marketing Group LLC b/d/a ISave, of New York, NY;
Qinghaishunzexiaofangjianceyouxiangongsi b/d/a EZEEY, of Chengxi District, Qinghai Province, China;
ZhenPingXianJiaXuanYaZhuBaoFuZhuangGongYiPinYouXia d/b/a JiaXuanYaZhuBaoFuZhuang, of Wuhanshi, Hubeisheng, China;
All FILTERS LLC d/b/a AllFilters, of Salt Lake City, UT;
GT SOURCING INC. d/b/a GT Sourcing, of Monsey, NY;
JJ Imports LLC d/b/a PRIME FILTERS, of Elmwood Park, NJ;
Tianjin Tianchuang Best Pure Environmental Science and Technology Co. Ltd. d/b/a TIANJIN TIANGCHUANG BESTPURE HUANBAO KEJI CO. LTD d/b/a Healthy Home, of Tianjin, China;
Top Pure (USA) Inc. d/b/a TOPPURE d/b/a ICEPURE, of Pico Rivera, CA;
W&L Trading LLC d/b/a Aqualink, of Frisco, TX;
Yunda H&H Tech (Tianjin) Co., Ltd. d/b/a Tianjin Yuanda Gongmao Youxian Gongsi d/b/a PUREPLUS, of Tianjinshi, China;
Refresh Filters LLC b/d/a Refresh My Water, of New York, NY;
Qingdao Ecopure Filter Co., Ltd d/b/a WaterdropDirect, of Qingdao, Shandong, China;
Qingdao Maxwell Commercial and Trading Company Ltd d/b/a Water Purity Expert, of Chengyang, Shandong, China; and
Qingdao Uniwell Trading Co., Ltd. d/b/a Qingdao Youniwei Shang Mao You Xian Gong Si d/b/a Uniwell Filter, of Qingdao, Shandong, China.
By instituting this investigation (337-TA-1290), the USITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The USITC’s Chief Administrative Law Judge will assign the case to one of the USITC’s administrative law judges (ALJ), who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. The ALJ will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.
The USITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the USITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. USITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.