OK - consider this sentence:
If I'd have had the money I would have bought it.

Here in the UK, that would be a perfectly reasonable sentence, and so far as I know, grammatically correct. "I'd" is short for "I had", so "I'd have had" expands to "I had have had". I've been hearing, using, and reading, this construction for decades, and no-one's questioned it until now.

Now an American tells me that "had have had" is wrong. If I had to guess, I'd guess that they were looking for "If I'd had" instead of "If I'd have had".

Google certainly confirms that I'm not alone in my use of "had have had". The question is, can this usage be backed up in any formal reference? Or is my American friend right, and I've been getting it wrong for nearly half a century?
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Comments  (Page 6) 
As far as the American version of how much verb is too much, less is more! The correct grammar would've been "If I had had the money...". "Had Have Had" is probably an English quirk and I haven't seen it in American English grammar books. The verb after "Had" should be in past tense hence the second "Had". Separating two "Had's" with a "Have" is odd. Keep it simple!
"If I'd had the money" is the hypothetical equivalent of "I had money", whereas
"If I'd have had the money" is the hypothetical equivalent of "I have had money"

Actually, the first one is equivalent to "If I had had the money"
In the second case, it is equivalent to "if I would have had the money"
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David Shedlock"If I'd have had the money" is the hypothetical equivalent of "I have had money"
Although this form is not uncommonly heard, it is still considered to be incorrect. Here are the acceptable forms:

Reality ('if' is similar in meaning to when(ever):

If I have the money, I buy it.
If I have had the money, I have bought it.
If I had the money, I bought it.


If I have the money, I will buy it.

Less real/unreal possibility:

If I had the money, I would buy it.


If I had had the money, I would have bought it.

There are various ways to decipher how those sentences can be interpreted. Though I too am unsure which would technically be correct under academic scrutiny. A few notes of mention include:

  • "I'd" represents: "I had", "I would", "I could", and possible "I should".(Not sure about that last one, but I think it fits. )
  • The word that follows generally helps identify the context the word should conform to.
  • American's are known to mispronounce, "I'd have had" as "I'd had had" (Guilty of this myself)
  • Another way to write," I'd have had", is:
  1. "I would have had"
  2. "I would've had"
  3. "I could've had"
  4. "I could have had"
  5. "I should've had"
  6. "I should have had"

Looking at those all typed out. It occurs to me that all these words give the air of past tense in this context. So it is quite plausible to use. "I'd have had" , as a suitable replacement for various circumstances. Though, it feels more in line with casual conversation.

***I looked it up. Apparently it's a "perfect conditional". Googling that term will tell you more than I could.