The Economic Impact of Cohabitation Dissolution versus Marital Dissolution in Fragile Families
Claire M. Kamp Dush, Cornell University
Elizabeth Peters, Cornell University
The large literature on the consequences of divorce for families and children has largely found negative effects of divorce. Yet, there has been little research on the economic consequences of cohabitation dissolution as compared with marital dissolution, particularly in low-income populations. We use the Fragile Families and Child Well-being study to compare the consequences of cohabitation dissolution and marital dissolution. By year 3 of the Fragile Families and Child Well-being study, 41% of mothers who ever cohabited with their child’s father and 9% of mothers who were ever married to their child’s father have dissolved their union. This study compares changes in employment and earnings across the transition to cohabitation dissolution as compared with marital dissolution. We also examine whether there are differences by type of union dissolution in a variety of child support outcomes.
Presented in Session 160: Cohabitation and Union Dissolution