‘In Sickness and in Health’: Partners’ Mutual Receipt of Sickness Allowance and Disability Pension in Present-Day Finland

Jan M. Saarela , Åbo Akademi University
Maria Stanfors, Lund University
Mikael Rostila, Stockholm University

We study married and cohabiting partners’ mutual receipt of sickness allowance and disability pension among people aged 40-65 years in Finland in 1987-2011. Discrete-time hazard models are estimated on population-register based data that include several sociodemographic control variables. We find strong interrelations, irrespective of gender. The risk of receiving sickness allowance is approximately 50 per cent higher in the first five years after the partner’s receipt of the same benefit, while the risk of receiving disability pension is approximately 100 per cent higher in the first five years after the partner had become a disability pensioner. There are also strong dependencies across the two benefit types. Women’s risk of receiving either benefit tends to be stronger related to the male partner’s receipt than vice versa. This pattern signals that there is a caregiving effect also in the Nordic context, governed by women’s higher responsibilities for the household and the family.

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 Presented in Session 223. Flash Session: Families and Health