Families throughout Britain are to receive letters detailing changes in child benefit, which will come in to force in January 2013.
Many parents will be asked to fill in a self-assessment tax form, in order for the UK tax authority to decide whether to reduce child benefit or cease payments altogether.
Under the new system, families where at least one person earns more than £50,000 a year will be affected.
Currently child benefit is paid to the sum of £20.30 for the first child, and £13.40 for each child after that.
Once the changes come into affect, a family who have two children and one parent earning over £60,000 could stand to lose £1752.40.
Accountants have predicted the letters will lead to a flurry of phone calls from parents confused by the new system, or looking to avoid losing their payments.
A spokesperson from the Treasury has defended the changes, saying, “In a period when the government is having to reduce welfare spending, it is very difficult to justify continuing to pay for the child benefit of the wealthiest 15% of families in society.”
The Conservative party have also released a poll of 2,066 British adults showing that 82% of the public support plans to cut child benefit for higher income families.