Rationalizing Child Support Decisions
The authors provide a framework within which the child-support compliance decisions of noncustodial fathers and the child-support awards set by institutional agents can be coherently interpreted. The model of child-support transfers is able to capture qualitatively the features of the monthly payment distribution. Estimated parental-decision rules are used to infer the implicit weights given by institutional agents to the postdivorce welfare of parents and children. The authors find that the weight attached to the combined welfare of the custodial mother and child is significantly less than the weight given to the father's welfare in most sample cases. Copyright 1995 by American Economic Association.
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