نقش بیمه سلامت در تصمیم گیری های تامین نیروی کار زنان طلاق گرفته
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|25303||2010||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||8144 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Volume 50, Issue 2, May 2010, Pages 121–131
Labor economics literature provides evidence that marital dissolution induces an increase in labor supply of females. This paper explores an explanation for this finding: Marital separation might place wives at risk of losing health insurance or increase the need for expanded health coverage. Thus, wives must increase their labor supply in order to qualify for health benefits. Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, results confirm that marital dissolution is associated with increased female labor supply. However, this effect is mostly concentrated among women who were not previously enrolled in their husbands’ health insurance plans. For wives who were dependent on their husbands for coverage, continuing coverage laws appear to mitigate the effect of marital dissolution on female labor supply.
Labor economics literature provides evidence that impending marital dissolution induces an increase in labor supply of females (Austen, 2004 and Johnson and Skinner, 1986). The usual explanation is that wives increase their work activity to protect themselves from potential income loss associated with marital separation. This paper explores an additional explanation not discussed in the literature: Impending separation might place wives at risk of losing health insurance or increase the need for expanded health coverage, leading to an increase in labor supply. A separate strand of health economics research finds that, in general, female labor supply depends on spousal insurance arrangements (Bradley et al., 2005, Buchmueller and Valetta, 1999 and Olson, 1998). However, absent from the literature is a study of how marital dissolution and spousal insurance arrangements interact to affect female labor supply. The principal hypothesis tested in this paper is that wives who do not want or need insurance might have smaller, or nonexistent, labor supply responses in the event of marital separation. Consequently, health insurance might play an important role in employment decisions of divorced females. This topic has important policy implications, particularly given the close tie between employment and health coverage in the United States. If marital dissolution and spousal insurance patterns affect labor supply, then policy makers might adjust unemployment insurance and income redistribution programs for separating spouses according to their insurance status (Mueller, 2005). Indeed, the Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA) was enacted, in part, because of concerns that marital separation puts females at risk of losing insurance. In addition, family courts might consider labor supply effects and insurance arrangements when deciding divorce settlements, and employers might offer flexible working arrangements and insurance benefits to recently divorced employees. Estimating the combined effects of marital dissolution and spousal insurance arrangements on female labor supply is complicated by the presence of unobserved heterogeneity that affects both marital stability and female labor supply. Moreover, the direction of causality might be reversed, as female employment activity might affect marital stability (Johnson & Skinner, 1986). To resolve these complications, this paper employs several different estimation procedures using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Results are consistent with Johnson and Skinner (1986) and Austen (2004) in suggesting that marital dissolution is associated with increased female labor supply. However, results also indicate that this effect is concentrated among women who were not previously enrolled in their husbands’ health insurance plans. For women who were dependent on their husbands for coverage, continuing coverage laws appear to mitigate the effect of marital disruption on female labor supply. This result implies that health insurance is an important part of the link between marital dissolution and labor supply of females.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The results presented in this paper are mostly applicable to U.S. insurance markets, where the majority of privately insured individuals obtain coverage through an employer. The finding that labor supply responses are not significant among wives with spousal insurance somewhat attests to the effectiveness of COBRA at protecting separating spouses from the possibility of insurance loss. That the labor supply effects of divorce are mostly concentrated among wives without spousal insurance, and the finding that these effects begin two years prior to divorce for women with children, suggest that marital separation places additional economic strain on those women. To restore health care consumption to previous levels or to provide coverage for children, women without spousal coverage must increase labor market activity in order to acquire coverage or improve upon existing coverage. This is an issue that might be of interest to family courts when considering divorce settlements. The results do not, however, provide evidence for whether divorce affects wives’ work activity after COBRA's three-year eligibility window expires. Labor economics literature provides evidence that continuing coverage mandates, such as COBRA, help reduce “job lock” (Gruber & Madrian, 1997). If leaving one's job is associated with insurance loss, a worker who might otherwise find it optimal to leave the workforce or seek new employment might be “locked” into a suboptimal job in order to remain covered by an employer's group plan. There is also the possible existence of “marital lock” in which spouses who might be best served by terminating a marriage stay together for fear of losing health coverage. Results of this paper indicate that marital lock is most likely to occur among wives who are not enrolled in spousal insurance. Policy discussion should focus on increasing insurance portability among women who are most at risk of losing insurance.