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Career Breaks after Childbirth: The Impact of Family Leave Reforms in the Czech Republic


  • Bicakova, Alena

    () (CERGE-EI)

  • Kaliskova, Klara

    () (CERGE-EI)


The Czech Republic is a country with a strong attachment of women to the labor market, but with one of the longest paid family leaves, which is often followed by a spell of unemployment. Using a difference-in-differences methodology, we study the impact of two reforms of the duration of the parental allowance on the labor market status of mothers 2-7 years after childbirth. While the 1995 reform prolonged the allowance from 3 to 4 years, the 2008 reform allowed some parents to shorten the duration of the allowance to only 2 or 3 years with an equivalent total monetary amount. We find that in response to the 1995 reform, 36% of mothers extended their family leave beyond the 3-year job protection period. The 2008 reform partially reversed this effect. Both reforms also had a considerable impact on post-leave unemployment and inactivity of mothers.

Suggested Citation

  • Bicakova, Alena & Kaliskova, Klara, 2016. "Career Breaks after Childbirth: The Impact of Family Leave Reforms in the Czech Republic," IZA Discussion Papers 10149, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10149

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Alzbeta Mullerova, 2017. "Family policy and maternal employment in the Czech transition: a natural experiment," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(4), pages 1185-1210, October.

    More about this item


    unemployment; female labor supply; family leave; policy evaluation;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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