The gift in March 2010 either occurred or it did not; assuming it was effected in the manner which I suspect you intended then beneficial interest would have, in part, been transferred at that time from H to W. The eventual sale was then by both H and W and not just H.
A married couple can only have one residence which qualifies for PPR relief for any particular period of time. However, for an election to be valid there has to be two residences for the same period of time in respect of which an election in favour of one of them can then be made. It appears that at no point in the 2 years prior to sale was the flat a residence; hence no election possible.
Whilst not wishing to get dragged in to the exchange between you and “incredulum” if one holds oneself out as knowledgeable in a particular profession then one is exposed to “attack” if suspect advice is given. The following is an extract regarding your expertise (assuming of course I have got the right Maggie Fleming):
“Maggie Fleming is an associate of the Chartered Institute of Taxation and is an associate of the Personal Finance Society (APFS). She is a fully qualified STEP (Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners) practitioner and is an experienced and highly-qualified Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). At Isis Financial Planners she specialises in providing tax and trusts advice to our clients.
After 11 years as a specialist at Arthur Andersen ……
She is a well-known figure in Brighton and writes for the Daily Telegraph, as well as various professional journals and has also spoken many times on local radio, as well as on Radio 4's MoneyBox Live….
In mid-2005, Maggie was appointed to the highly prestigious Personal Taxes Sub-Committee of the Technical Committee of the Chartered Institute of Taxation. She currently serves on the CGT & Investment Income sub-committee.
In 2005, she took part in a CIOT-sponsored debate on taxation alongside Vince Cable”.
I attempted in my initial response to proffer helpful advice (and hopefully accurate advice) but within 17 minutes you resolutely disagreed without, if I may say, taking any serious time to re-read the legislation in the light of a comment which was made which was different from your own view.
I would add, however, that I believe many tax practitioners and financial advisors are not aware of what I believe is a subtle point and to this extent I do not think (if i may say) you have made some major faux pas or deserve pilloring; unfortunately, however, very few clients have sympathy with professionals who try their best but get it wrong (qua Conrad Murray).
For my part, I always think there by the grace of God go I.