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HMRC internal manual

Capital Gains Manual

Land: understanding the principles of land law

The CGT consequences of certain transactions in land can sometimes be difficult to determine. One particular area of difficulty can be in establishing the precise interest in the land owned by the person making the disposal. In such cases, it will often be necessary to examine the relevant documents, for example the sale agreement or lease etc. The interpretation of such documents can be difficult, but an understanding of the main principles of general land law often allows a seemingly complex document to be understood.

The following guidance at CG70205+ gives a brief introduction to the main principles of land law in England and Wales which are relevant for CGT purposes. The position in Scotland and Northern Ireland is somewhat different, but many of the general principles still apply in those countries.