Did California’s Paid Family Leave Law Affect Mothers’ Time Spent on Work and Childcare?

Julia M. Goodman, University of California, Berkeley

As the first state to mandate paid family leave (PFL), California provides a natural experiment for examining the relationship between increased paid leave and time use among parents of very young children. Using data from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), I used difference-in-difference-in difference analysis to examine time use of adult women with a child under age 1 in California relative to women in other states before and after PFL and to mothers of older children (N=4586). PFL was associated with an increase of over 3.5 hours in time spent on childcare, with stronger results among women with less than a college education. This was driven by changes in time spent on secondary, but not primary, childcare. PFL was not significantly associated with time spent on work.

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Presented in Session 133: Parental Time Use and Parenting