Couples Cope Better with Disability and Health Shocks
Author: University of British Columbia
Published: 2009-12-28 : (Rev. 2013-06-22)
Synopsis and Key Points:
How individuals cope economically with disability and health shocks.
Main DigestMarital status plays a significant role in how individuals cope economically with disability and health shocks, according to a working paper by University of British Columbia economists Giovanni Gallipoli and Laura Turner.
In their study, titled Household Responses to Individual Shocks: Disability and Labor Supply, the researchers examined data from the Canadian Survey of Labor and Income Dynamics (SLID) and found that in marriages, "main-earners" (typically husbands) tend to transfer income and compensate "second-earners" (typically wives). The second-earners, in turn, provide conditional time and care in periods of need (such as illness and disability of main-earner).
The insurance the second-earner provides to the main-earner in the marital contract serves as an important mechanism to help smooth out household income in periods of health and disability shocks to the main-earner; and as a way to support the future earning potential of the main-earner, according to Gallipoli, a UBC economics professor and Turner, now an assistant professor at the University of Toronto. Both Gallipoli and Turner are members of the Canadian Labor Market and Skills Researcher Network.
The researchers also find that the relative value of marriage changes in different ways for men and women as they age.
Men who receive bad shocks early in life may lose the insurance offered by marriage by being sorted out of possible matches in the early stages, according to the study. Marriages become more stable the longer the couple is together, and uncertainty is resolved. The long-term costs associated to health shocks are particularly high for main-earners in the early stages of their working life, because they imply a permanent loss of human capital and earning potential.
Other findings include:
"Low-risk" marriages, where the main-earner is in a low-risk health state, are more stable and encounter less renegotiation and termination of marital contracts at every stage of the life-cycle.
Men who are at high risk of receiving health and disability shocks value marriage early in life, when they are poor in both assets and work experience. As these husbands age, their gains from marriage decrease as "buffer stocks" of human capital and assets are accumulated and they become more likely to trigger a renegotiation of the marital contract. These later renegotiations are referred to by the authors as a "midlife crisis."
All men value marriage at the late stages of their working life as they approach retirement, and the end of their main-earner status, as well as during periods of high health risk.
Tips for the Newly Disabled
Coping with Illness or Disability
- 1 - NCPD ID Cards for Persons with Disabilities and Disability App : Matt Maura : Bahamas Information Services (2020/09/24)
- 2 - Disability ID Cards: How and Where to Obtain One : Disabled World (2019/05/21)
- 3 - How Our Ancestors Turned Disability into Advantage : University of York (2015/08/05)
- 4 - Aphantasia: The Inability to Visualize Images : University of Exeter (2015/09/11)
- 5 - Obesity, Smoking, Physical Labor May Explain Disability Disparities : The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) (2020/09/01)
- 6 - Towards a Disability-Smart World: Strategies for Global Disability Inclusion : Business Disability Forum (2020/07/08)
- 7 - Conquer Paralysis Now Challenge : $20M in Grants and Prizes : Conquer Paralysis Now (CPN) (2014/12/05)
• Disabled World is strictly a news and information website provided for general informational purpose only and does not constitute medical advice. Materials presented are in no way meant to be a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Any 3rd party offering or advertising on disabled-world.com does not constitute endorsement by Disabled World.