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Welfare and Child Support Measures in Fragile Families Data(baseline and 1-year surveys)
Child Support • Formal Child Support – 3 steps • Paternity Establishment • Obtaining an Order • Getting a Payment • Informal Child Support • Between mom and dad
Formal Child Support Measures • Paternity establishment • In or out of hospital • Formal Agreement (order) • When and where agreement made • Amount ordered • Whether visitation is included • Formal Payment • How much • Arrears • How much
Informal Child Support Measures • Informal Agreement • When made • How much agreed to • Informal Payment • How much • In-Kind Contributions from Father • How often dad buys: toys, clothes, medicine, child care items (diapers), food/formula, other things
Other CS Measures • Does mom receive child support from other fathers? • How much • Dad’s obligations to children from other mothers: • Does he have order • Make payments (how much) • Have arrears (how much)
Limitations of CS Measures • Informal support only for those w/o orders (in 18 cities) • Resident parents (in 2 cities) not asked about formal support • Cannot construct month by month child support history • Not sure if moms on welfare are reporting actual amount received or amount father is paying (to state)
Child Support Outcomes for Mothers w/ Nonmarital births not Cohabiting w/Father (1-year)
Welfare Receipt Measures • Baseline • Public assistance/welfare/food stamp receipt in past 12 months (combined question) • 1-Year Survey – TANF • Current receipt • Receipt in past 12 months • # of months • Amount received last month • Ever receipt (when and for how long)
Other TANF Questions • Baseline: knowledge about TANF questions • Required to do anything for benefits? • Benefits cut off or reduced? • Ever think you were eligible? • Ever apply? • Result of application?
Other Types of Public Assistance • Baseline Survey • How paid for birth (Medicaid/private/no ins.) • 1-Year Survey • Food Stamps (# of months, amount) • Medicaid • Other help (unemployment, workers comp) • SSI • Public Housing • Child Care assistance • WIC • Apply for EITC?
Limitations of TANF Measures • Baseline TANF question combined w/food stamps, so can’t tell when started receiving • Very difficult to construct month by month history of TANF reliance • Have to assume that they received the same amount each month
Types of Questions We Can Answer • The effect of Child Support/Welfare Receipt on: • Mom/dad’s labor supply • Father/child contact • Parents’ relationship • Mom’s welfare participation • Child well-being • Economic hardship • Family formation/marriage • The determinants of Child Support/Welfare Receipt • Explaining variation in Child Support/Welfare Receipt
Proportion of Mothers w/ Order by City (nonmarital births, not residing with father)
Use FF Measures to Construct City-Level Measures Example 1: Paternity Establishment • Construct city-level aggregate measures • Purge of city compositional differences Example 2: Welfare generosity • Construct city-level sanction measures • Use lagged measures