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Rational Poverty or Poor Rationality? The Take-Up Study of Social Assistance Benefits

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  • Riphahn, Regina T

Abstract

In several countries social assistance dependence has been increasing since the 1980s. After surveying the theoretical and empirical take-up literature, this study presents estimates of recent rates of non take-up of social assistance benefits. Once methodological shortcomings of prior estimations are corrected, the results show that take-up has fallen recently and thus cannot explain the rising welfare receipt. Following theoretical predictions, the probability that a rational individual takes up social assistance increases with the expected benefit amount and duration, and falls with application cost and stigma. More than half of all households eligible for transfers under the German social assistance program did not claim their benefits. Copyright 2001 by The International Association for Research in Income and Wealth.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by International Association for Research in Income and Wealth in its journal Review of Income & Wealth.

Volume (Year): 47 (2001)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 379-98

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Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:47:y:2001:i:3:p:379-98

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Cited by:
  1. Ewoudou, Jacques & Tsimpo, Clarence & Wodon, Quentin, 2009. "Stigma and the take-up of social programs," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4962, The World Bank.
  2. Terracol, Antoine, 2009. "Guaranteed minimum income and unemployment duration in France," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 171-182, April.
  3. Lea, Stephen E.G. & Webley, Paul, 2005. "In search of the economic self," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 585-604, October.
  4. Sonja C. Kassenboehmer & John P. Haisken-DeNew, 2009. "Social Jealousy and Stigma: Negative Externalities of Social Assistance Payments in Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 0117, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  5. Hinte, Holger & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2014. "Does the Calculation Hold? The Fiscal Balance of Migration to Denmark and Germany," IZA Policy Papers 87, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Becker, Irene & Hauser, Richard, 2012. "Kindergrundsicherung, Kindergeld und Kinderzuschlag: Eine vergleichende Analyse aktueller Reformvorschläge," WSI Discussion Papers 180, Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaftliches Institut (WSI), Hans-Böckler-Stiftung.
  7. Olivier Bargain & Herwig Immervoll & Heikki Viitamäki, 2009. "No Claim, No Pain - Measuring the Non-Take-up of Social Assistance using Register Data," Working Papers 200931, School Of Economics, University College Dublin.
  8. Wunder, Christoph & Riphahn, Regina, 2013. "Welfare transitions before and after reforms of the German welfare system," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79715, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  9. repec:ese:emodwp:em4-07 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Kerstin Bruckmeier & Jürgen Wiemers, 2012. "A new targeting: a new take-up?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 43(2), pages 565-580, October.

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