Martina Devlin: UK found way to cut child benefit for high earners – why can't we?
There we were, gossiping over coffee at the kitchen table, a news review programme murmuring in the background. The weekend was unfolding in a leisurely fashion – until all at once my sister leapt up and increased the volume on the radio.
The BBC presenter was announcing the impending deadline for opting out of child benefit for those with one household salary above £60,000.
Panicked, my sister – a mother-of-two who lives in the northwest of England – sprinted to the staircase and called to her husband to get out of bed. Minutes later, still in his pyjamas, he was logging on to the HM Revenue and Customs website.