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Survivor Benefits and the Gender Tax Gap in Public Pension Schemes: Observations from Germany

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  • Martin Werding

Abstract

Since its inception, the traditional form of providing survivor benefits within public pension schemes has lost much of its legitimacy. As a result of fundamental changes in marriage behaviour and the typical division of labour between married spouses, offering non-contributory benefits of this kind could be seen as inequitable. Since these benefits usually substitute for non-derived pension entitlements based on the surviving spouse’s own contributions, they can also lead to incentive effects, especially for married women with some degree of labour-force attachment, that appear to be far from optimal. The present paper highlights this problem referring to institutional details and empirical results related to Germany and shows how it could be resolved by jointly annuitizing a given couple’s pension entitlements.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1596.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1596

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Keywords: public pensions; survivor benefits; female labour supply; optimal taxation;

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  17. Martin Werding, 2006. "Kinderrente und Vorsorgepflicht - der ifo-Vorschlag zur Lösung der demographischen Krise des Rentensystems," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 59(07), pages 44-53, 04.
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  22. Martin Werding & Anita Kaltschütz, 2005. "Modellrechnungen zur langfristigen Tragfähigkeit der öffentlichen Finanzen," ifo Beiträge zur Wirtschaftsforschung, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 17.
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