Marital Splits and Income Changes
Evidence for Britain
Publication date: 60
Innocenti Occasional Papers, Economic Policy Series
No. of pages: 38
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The relationship between marital splits and personal income changes is of great relevance to social policy. The aim of this paper is to provide new longitudinal evidence for Britain about the relationship between marital splits and changes in personal economic well-being using data from the first four waves (1991-94) of the British Household Panel Survey. It finds that marital dissolution is associated with significant decreases in real income for separating wives and the children of separating couples, and that separating husbands do not fare as badly. The paper’s conclusions about the different experiences of separating husbands and separating wives and children echo those of earlier studies for the United States, Germany and Canada. This is interesting because of the diversity of labour markets and welfare states across these countries and suggests that outcomes may be linked to gender-related differences that are common across countries.