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Annuity reform bill wins through in Commons

The Conservatives have inflicted another defeat on the Government over annuity reform as Tory MP Edward Garnier&#39s Bill which is aimed at changing the present annuity regime passed a second reading in the House of Commons last week.

With voting tactics reminiscent of last year&#39s private member&#39s bill sponsored by Tory MP David Curry when the Government was defeated three times, Tory and LibDem MPs flooded the Commons last week to win the vote 127-26.

Garnier&#39s bill is essentially the same as Curry&#39s effort, which was eventually defeated when it ran out of Parliamentary time at the end of the session last July.

It calls for everyone to be compelled to purchase an annuity sufficient to keep them off state benefits by the age of 65 and then have freedom to use the rest of their pension pot as they wish.

Retirement Income Reform Campaign director Oonagh McDonald says: “This is fantastic news for millions of pensioners who are desperate to see reform. Surely the Government must take note of the scale of this vote and take on board the need for reform.”

A Treasury spokesman says: “We have put forward our own annuity reform plans which we are consulting on. We believe they are the right way forward, not those proposed by Edward Garnier.”

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