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Maternity Leave and the Responsiveness of Female Labor Supply to a Household Shock

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  • Emma Tominey

    (University of York)

Abstract

Female labor supply can insure households against shocks to paternal employment. The paper estimates whether the female labor supply response to a paternal employment shock differs by eligibility to maternity employment protection. We exploit time-state variation in the implementation of unpaid maternity leave through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) in the US which increased employment protection from 0 to 12 weeks. We find that mothers eligible for FMLA speed up their return to work in response to a paternal shock, with a conditional probability of being in work 53% higher than in households with no paternal shock. In contrast, there was a negligible insurance response for mothers with no employment protection.

Suggested Citation

  • Emma Tominey, 2013. "Maternity Leave and the Responsiveness of Female Labor Supply to a Household Shock," Working Papers 2013-016, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:hka:wpaper:2013-016
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    female labor supply; insurance; maternity leave;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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