Examining the Relationship between Caregiving and Work

Published: 2016
Project ID: UM16-07


There has been much concern over the provision of long-term care and the stresses it imposes on the family members who provide that care. In this study, we draw on 20 years of data from the Health and Retirement Study to investigate the effect of caregiving on the labor market behavior of women, focusing not just on labor-force participation and earnings, but on the potential loss of job-related benefits such as health insurance and pension coverage. We take a dynamic approach to the analysis, following women over time from before their spouse/parent needs care, to examine the evolution of caregiving and the contemporaneous labor-market behavior. We continue our examination beyond the onset of caregiving to assess whether behavior evolves over time and how labor supply changes once again when the need to provide care has ended.