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The Effects of California's Paid Family Leave Program on Mothers’ Leave‐Taking and Subsequent Labor Market Outcomes

  • Maya Rossin‐Slater
  • Christopher J. Ruhm
  • Jane Waldfogel

This analysis uses March Current Population Survey data from 1999-2010 and a differences-in-differences approach to examine how California's first in the nation paid family leave (PFL) program affected leave-taking by mothers following childbirth, as well as subsequent labor market outcomes. We obtain robust evidence that the California program more than doubled the overall use of maternity leave, increasing it from around three to six or seven weeks for the typical new mother – with particularly large growth for less advantaged groups. We also provide suggestive evidence that PFL increased the usual weekly work hours of employed mothers of one-to-three year-old children by 6 to 9% and that their wage incomes may have risen by a similar amount.

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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

Volume (Year): 32 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (03)
Pages: 224-245

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Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:32:y:2013:i:2:p:224-245
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

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  1. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
  2. Florence Jaumotte, 2003. "Labour Force Participation of Women: Empirical Evidence on The Role of Policy and Other Determinants in OECD Countries," OECD Economic Studies, OECD Publishing, vol. 2003(2), pages 51-108.
  3. 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.
  4. Liu, Qian & Nordström Skans, Oskar, 2009. "The Duration of Paid Parental Leave and Children's Scholastic Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 4244, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Paul Gregg & Maria Gutierrez-Domenech & Jane Waldfogel, 2003. "The Employment of Married Mothers in Great Britain: 1974-2000," CEP Discussion Papers dp0596, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  6. Baker, Michael & Milligan, Kevin, 2008. "Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 871-887, July.
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