Prevalence and Predictors of Union Dissolution and Union Formation Among Biological Parents of Young Children in Chile

Laura Cuesta , Rutgers University
Sarah A. Reynolds, University of California, Berkeley

We examine the prevalence and predictors of union dissolution and union formation of children’s biological parents in Chile. Using the Chilean Early Childhood Longitudinal Survey, we identify families who were intact or had a separated father. For both of these types of families, we ask: (1) what is the prevalence of father absence/presence among previously intact/separated parents of young children in Chile?; (2) which characteristics of families, parents, and children are predictors of union dissolution/formation with the biological father among these families?; (3) do these associations differ by geography, socioeconomic status, and gender of the child? We find evidence that preparedness for marriage (e.g., father’s age) and marital investment (e.g., having a mortgage versus renting) reduce the risk of union dissolution and increase the probability of establishing stable unions. Some differences by geography and gender of the child are observed.

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 Presented in Session 4. Marriage, Family, Households, & Unions