Following Chancellor Gordon Brown’s Sipp bombshell in December 2005, life and pension offices must be wondering what other surprises the Treasury has up its sleeve this year.Standard Life is optimistically lobbying the Government to reverse its decision by allowing buy-to-let property in Sipps. Scottish Equitable is asking the Treasury to allay fears of a postponement to pension simplification by issuing a formal statement confirming that A-Day is still in the diary for April 6. The Government will release its White Paper on the Pensions Commission proposals in the spring, when the industry will find out whether or not Adair Turner’s proposals have been kicked into touch. Providers have been challenged to come up with an answer by February to Turner’s idea of a National Pension Savings Scheme, with a 0.3 per cent annual management charge. However, the industry will not be able to see how the European Union’s age discrimination legislation fits into the new pension regime until it comes into force next October. The Treasury, through the Paymaster General, is set to issue a written ministerial statement on inheritance tax and simplification in March. It is expected that new contracting-out rebates will also be announced in the spring while the Parliamentary Ombudsman will issue its delayed report on whether the Government should pay compensation to workers who lost their pensions when their employers went bust before April 2005. Standard Life’s demutualisation should go ahead in the summer but whether the Sipp U-turn will affect its flotation price remains to be seen. Many commentators believe that A-Day will not increase significantly the volume of pension business next year, with growth remaining broadly similar to 2005 levels. There will undoubtedly be fallout from clients who were advised to set up Sipps in anticipation of holding residential property, particularly those who switched out of regulated personal pensions. A-Day will also provide a real test for providers’ systems. There will inevitably be problems and it will be down to IFAs to highlight these, so expect another year of upheaval.