The Impact of Children’s Disabilities on Families

Snaebjorn Gunnsteinsson, Herdis Steingrimsdottir

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the impact of having a child with a severe disability on parents’ trajectory of earnings, employment, marital dissolutions and subsequent fertility. We construct a database of the universe of births in Denmark in 1992-2005 that links together several administrative registers including detailed health records and data from tax authorities and employers. To estimate the causal effect we focus on serious conditions (based on US Social Security rules) that appear relatively randomly in the population and apply an event study framework using both regression and matching methods. We find that the earnings trajectories for affected and unaffected families begin to diverge about 4-5 years after the birth of their child, leading to a significant long term impact on both mothers’ and fathers’ earnings. By 11-15 years after the birth of the child, affected mothers earn 8-9% less, and affected fathers 5-6%, compared to unaffected parents. Having a child with disability furthermore decreases the number of subsequent births by 11-14%. For further insight, we isolate the impact of having a child with cerebral palsy, a relatively common disability that is not part of our main definition, and find comparable results.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2018
Number of pages29
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventThe 33rd Annual Congress of the European Economic Association (EEA) - The 71st European Meeting of the Econometric Society (ESEM) 2018 - Cologne, Germany
Duration: 27 Aug 201831 Aug 2018
Conference number: 33 / 71
https://editorialexpress.com/cgi-bin/conference/conference.cgi?action=login&db_name=EEAESEM2018

Conference

ConferenceThe 33rd Annual Congress of the European Economic Association (EEA) - The 71st European Meeting of the Econometric Society (ESEM) 2018
Number33 / 71
CountryGermany
CityCologne
Period27/08/201831/08/2018
Internet address

Keywords

  • Disability
  • Children
  • Child
  • Insurance
  • Earnings
  • Income
  • Labor force participation

Cite this

Gunnsteinsson, S., & Steingrimsdottir, H. (2018). The Impact of Children’s Disabilities on Families. Paper presented at The 33rd Annual Congress of the European Economic Association (EEA) - The 71st European Meeting of the Econometric Society (ESEM) 2018, Cologne, Germany. https://editorialexpress.com/cgi-bin/conference/download.cgi?db_name=EEAESEM2018&paper_id=1920