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Maternity rights and mothers' return to work

Author

Listed:
  • Burgess, Simon
  • Gregg, Paul
  • Propper, Carol
  • Washbrook, Elizabeth

Abstract

This paper uses a cohort of 12,000 births to examine the effect of maternity rights on mothers' post-birth return to employment decisions. It uses a discrete hazard model to disentangle the effects of the terms of maternity rights entitlements from other factors that influence the timing of a mother's return to work. Mothers with rights have an underlying (but unobserved) stronger attachment to the labour market that prompts earlier return than on average. We take this into account by estimating a counterfactual distribution of return times using a sample of women who failed to qualify for maternity rights but who have similar levels of labour market attachment. Even when differential attachment is taken into account there remains a substantial impact of maternity rights on behaviour.

Suggested Citation

  • Burgess, Simon & Gregg, Paul & Propper, Carol & Washbrook, Elizabeth, 2008. "Maternity rights and mothers' return to work," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 168-201, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:15:y:2008:i:2:p:168-201
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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