Shoshana Grossbard

  • Current position:
    Professor of Economics, San Diego University, USA
  • Research interest:
    Sex ratios, household production, labor supply, and marriage markets
  • Website:
  • Affiliations:
    San Diego University, USA
  • Qualifications:
    PhD Economics, University of Chicago, 1978
  • Personal statement about IZA World of Labor:
    I’m excited to be a part of this innovative project. Policymakers and academics are increasingly finding World of Labor a useful way to quickly learn the latest state of research on a wide range of issues related to labor and demographic economics
  • Selected publications:
    • The Marriage Motive: A Price Theory of Marriage. How Marriage Markets Affect Employment, Consumption and Savings. New York: Springer-Verlag, 2015.
    • “Common law marriage and male/female convergence in labor supply and time use.” Research in Labor Economics 41:1 (2015): 143–175 (with V. Vernon).
    • “Sex ratios, polygyny, and the value of women in marriage—A Beckerian approach.” Journal of Demographic Economics 81:1 (2015): 13–25.
    • “Racial intermarriage and household production.” Review of Behavioral Economics 1:4 (2014): 295–347 (with J. I. Gimenez and J. A. Molina).
  • Articles

Should common law marriage be abolished?

The availability of common law marriage may affect couple formation, labor supply, and the decision to have children

May 2016

10.15185/izawol.256 256

by Shoshana Grossbard Grossbard, S

In addition to regular marriage, Australia, Brazil, and 11 US states recognize common law (or de facto) marriage, which allows one or both cohabiting partners to claim, under certain conditions, that an informal union is a marriage. France and some other countries also have several types of marriage and civil union contracts. The policy issue is whether to abolish common law marriage, as it appears to discourage couple formation and female labor supply. A single conceptual framework can explain how outcomes are affected by the choice between regular and common law marriage, and between various marriage and civil union contracts.