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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations
Title 12: Banks and Banking
(a) Permissible activities. Subject to the limitations of this section, a Federal savings association may engage in leasing activities. These activities include becoming the legal or beneficial owner of tangible personal property or real property for the purpose of leasing such property, obtaining an assignment of a lessor's interest in a lease of such property, and incurring obligations incidental to its position as the legal or beneficial owner and lessor of the leased property.
(b) Definitions. For the purposes of this section:
(1) The term net lease means a lease under which the Federal savings association will not, directly or indirectly, provide or be obligated to provide for:
(i) The servicing, repair or maintenance of the leased property during the lease term;
(ii) The purchasing of parts and accessories for the leased property, except that improvements and additions to the leased property may be leased to the lessee upon its request in accordance with the full-payout requirements of paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section;
(iii) The loan of replacement or substitute property while the leased property is being serviced;
(iv) The purchasing of insurance for the lessee, except where the lessee has failed to discharge a contractual obligation to purchase or maintain insurance; or
(v) The renewal of any license, registration, or filing for the property unless such action by the Federal savings association is necessary to protect its interest as an owner or financier of the property.
(2) The term full-payout lease means a lease transaction in which any unguaranteed portion of the estimated residual value relied on by the association to yield the return of its full investment in the leased property, plus the estimated cost of financing the property over the term of the lease, does not exceed 25% of the original cost of the property to the lessor. In general, a lease will qualify as a full-payout lease if the scheduled payments provide at least 75% of the principal and interest payments that a lessor would receive if the finance lease were structured as a market-rate loan.
(3) The term realization of investment means that a Federal savings association that enters into a lease financing transaction must reasonably expect to realize the return of its full investment in the leased property, plus the estimated cost of financing the property over the term of the lease from:
(ii) Estimated tax benefits, if any; and
(iii) The estimated residual value of the property at the expiration of the term of the lease.
(c) Finance leasing—(1) Investment limits. A Federal savings association may exercise its authority under HOLA sections 5(c)(1)(B) (residential real estate loans), 5(c)(2)(A) (commercial, business, corporate or agricultural loans), 5(c)(2)(B) (nonresidential real estate loans), and 5(c)(2)(D) (consumer loans) by conducting leasing activities that are the functional equivalent of loans made under those HOLA sections. These activities are commonly referred to as financing leases. Such financing leases are subject to the same investment limits that apply to loans made under those sections. For example, a financing lease of tangible personal property made to a natural person for personal, family or household purposes is subject to all limitations applicable to the amount of a Federal savings association's investment in consumer loans. A financing lease made for commercial, corporate, business, or agricultural purposes is subject to all limitations applicable to the amount of a Federal savings association's investment in commercial loans. A financing lease of residential or nonresidential real property is subject to all limitations applicable to the amount of a Federal savings association's investment in these types of real estate loans.
(2) Functional equivalent of lending. To qualify as the functional equivalent of a loan:
(i) The lease must be a net, full-payout lease representing a non-cancelable obligation of the lessee, notwithstanding the possible early termination of the lease;
(ii) The portion of the estimated residual value of the property relied upon by the lessor to satisfy the requirements of a full-payout lease must be reasonable in light of the nature of the leased property and all relevant circumstances so that realization of the lessor's full investment plus the cost of financing the property depends primarily on the creditworthiness of the lessee, and not on the residual market value of the leased property; and
(iii) At the termination of a financing lease, either by expiration or default, property acquired must be liquidated or released on a net basis as soon as practicable. Any property held in anticipation of re-leasing must be reevaluated and recorded at the lower of fair market value or book value.
(d) General leasing. Pursuant to section 5(c)(2)(C) of the HOLA, a Federal savings association may invest in tangible personal property, including vehicles, manufactured homes, machinery, equipment, or furniture, for the purpose of leasing that property. In contrast to financing leases, lease investments made under this authority need not be the functional equivalent of loans.
(e) Leasing salvage powers. If, in good faith, a Federal savings association believes that there has been an unanticipated change in conditions that threatens its financial position by significantly increasing its exposure to loss, it may:
(1) As the owner and lessor, take reasonable and appropriate action to salvage or protect the value of the property or its interest arising under the lease;
(2) As the assignee of a lessor's interest in a lease, become the owner and lessor of the leased property pursuant to its contractual right, or take any reasonable and appropriate action to salvage or protect the value of the property or its interest arising under the lease; or
(3) Include any provisions in a lease, or make any additional agreements, to protect its financial position or investment in the circumstances set forth in paragraphs (e)(1) and (e)(2) of this section.