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HMRC internal manual

Business Leasing Manual

Defining long funding leases: funding leases that are not long funding leases: short leases: excluded leases: requirement to lease with land

A lease of plant or machinery by itself cannot be a lease of background plant or machinery. So, for example, a lessor leasing only a lift or combined heat and power (CHP) plant to a business is not leasing background plant or machinery.

On the other hand, a property lessor that leases an office building that includes a lift and CHP plant will be leasing background plant or machinery unless the CHP plant does not contribute to the functionality of the office (or its site) as an environment within which activities can be carried on. The latter is unlikely in practice, but could happen if, for example, the CHP plant supplied power to another site.

See guidance at BLM21600 where the plant or machinery is leased with a small amount of, or minor interest in, land.